There's a transparent silliness in a British theater putting on a bunch of anti-Trump plays. But the counterculture became the culture, except that it's now the counter-counterculture. And Trump is a big enough name that he can bail out British theaters as well a lot of the US media.
Caryl Churchill and Roy Williams are to contribute to a new festival of plays about Donald Trump.
Theatre503 will host Top Trumps, a festival responding to the upcoming US president's election and inauguration. As well as Churchill and Williams, Neil LaBute and Hassan Abdulrazzak will also pen short plays as part of the festival.
Churchill's play will look at a family split by voting differences, LaBute's piece looks to the future of sexual politics, Abdulrazzak's focuses on Palestinian politics, while Williams' play will explore the black vote for Trump.
LaBute is a natural for this. He can easily phone it in. Roy Williams is a Brit, so he's got as much insight into the black vote for Trump as I do into the prospects of Manchester United. Hassan Abdulrazzak, responsible for Sderot Cinema, the sort of smirking thing that anti-Semites watch to feel justified in their anti-Semitism, will contribute the Jew-hatred. Which is supposed to be Caryl Churchill's part.
Caryl Churchill's Seven Jewish Children is the vilest condensed hatred of Jews to come out of Europe since the fall of the Third Reich. And yet you can easily see Churchill retrofitting Seven Jewish Children as an anti-Trump production. Just swap out the Jewish roles for whatever Churchill's cliched idea of Americans is and you can even keep a lot of it intact. There'll be a working class American patriarch delivering lines like, "Don't tell them that we have to kill Muslims to fuel our SUVs".
And then just cash the check.
The irony of it is that the sorts of people who put on these things like to think of themselves as tolerant folks fighting bigots like Trump. And yet they can't manage to attack Trump without throwing in a dose of nastiness toward the Jews along the way.
“So many events took our world by surprise last year, and questions have rightly been asked about how out of touch we in the theatre are,” she adds. The festival will be an attempt to “get beyond the echo chamber
Yes, nothing says getting beyond eco chamber like getting the usual suspects to put together some Trump bashing for the same old audiences.