Reading the Mueller Report. Or how political theater is still relevant
Hollywood stars brought to the stage a live reading of the Mueller Report under the title "The Investigation: A Search for Truth in 10 Acts."
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You don't need to know who Bertolt Brecht or Erwin Piscator were to see the importance that theater has had in world politics.
Or maybe you do?
History reminds us of the transformation of speeches and scenographies during all kinds of political regimes, especially when injustices were being overlooked.
"To stand on a stage is to say to many people, 'Look at me,'" said Judith Malina, founder of the Living Theater in the United States. "How can you do that without speaking the only truth you know? There is no such thing as an uncommitted actor."
This is what Annette Bening, Kevin Kline, John Lithgow, Alfre Woodard, Justin Long, and Alyssa Milano honored when they decided to join the handful of Hollywood stars that brought the controversial Mueller report to the stage.
Through the play "The Investigation: A Search for Truth in Ten Acts," the actors interpreted in a live reading the more than 400 pages contained in the report of the special counsel Robert Mueller on the Russian interference in the 2016 elections and President Donald Trump's attempts to obstruct justice.
Written by Robert Schenkkan and broadcasted live by Law Works - an organization "dedicated to defending the non-partisan role of the Department of Justice,” according to CBS News - the work featured artists such as Ben McKenzie and Julia Luis-Dreyfus who gave voice to those who were part of one of the most critical periods in the history of American democracy.
For just over an hour, the artists shared shifts to read excerpts from the report that related to the participation of government members such as Sarah Huckabee Sanders, Hope Hicks, Jeff Sessions, Michael Flynn, and Don McGahn in disturbing interactions with President Trump.
Knowing that very few U.S. citizens would actually take the time to read, digest, interpret and understand the seriousness of the report's findings, the theater becomes once again a mechanism of contestation and direct communication with those who finally have the power to hold their political leaders accountable.
In a statement, Law Works explained its conviction that the play "shows that President Trump likely obstructed justice and that President Trump's campaign not only knew Russia wanted them to win but welcomed it."
Through theater and the voices of talented actors - the reality of the Muller investigation has been brought to life. Would that this would make the difference.