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Spalding Gray's Last Interview

Spalding Gray's Last Interview SPALDING GRAY’S LAST INTERVIEW Theresa Smalec I O n January 9th 2004 I interviewed Spalding Gray for the purpose of my dissertation research. Roughly twenty-four hours later, he went missing. Though I find it odd to frame my intentions in this manner, my essay is, at least in part, an effort to solve a mystery: Why did Gray agree to meet and discuss the life of Ron Vawter on the day before he killed himself ? It is also an effort to grasp my relationship to the death of a stranger, a man whom I knew for little over an hour. Since Gray’s disappearance, I’ve struggled with an awkward recognition that our interview was the scene of something larger than a conversation about Vawter’s past, even though it was rooted in Gray’s memories of the personal and professional journeys they had taken together, first as members of The Performance Group, then of The Wooster Group. I use the word “scene” cautiously, at once resisting and embracing its reference to theatre. While I do not wish to claim Gray treated our interview as an orchestrated show, I now intuit that he used the occasion of remembering Vawter to address http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png PAJ: A Journal of Performance and Art MIT Press

Spalding Gray's Last Interview

PAJ: A Journal of Performance and Art , Volume 30 (1) – Jan 1, 2008

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Publisher
MIT Press
Copyright
© 2008 Theresa Smalec
Subject
Features
ISSN
1520-281X
eISSN
1537-9477
DOI
10.1162/pajj.2008.30.1.1
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

SPALDING GRAY’S LAST INTERVIEW Theresa Smalec I O n January 9th 2004 I interviewed Spalding Gray for the purpose of my dissertation research. Roughly twenty-four hours later, he went missing. Though I find it odd to frame my intentions in this manner, my essay is, at least in part, an effort to solve a mystery: Why did Gray agree to meet and discuss the life of Ron Vawter on the day before he killed himself ? It is also an effort to grasp my relationship to the death of a stranger, a man whom I knew for little over an hour. Since Gray’s disappearance, I’ve struggled with an awkward recognition that our interview was the scene of something larger than a conversation about Vawter’s past, even though it was rooted in Gray’s memories of the personal and professional journeys they had taken together, first as members of The Performance Group, then of The Wooster Group. I use the word “scene” cautiously, at once resisting and embracing its reference to theatre. While I do not wish to claim Gray treated our interview as an orchestrated show, I now intuit that he used the occasion of remembering Vawter to address

Journal

PAJ: A Journal of Performance and ArtMIT Press

Published: Jan 1, 2008

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