Letter to the Editor

By Anne Tonkovich

Editor:

I’m writing in response to, what else, but Christina Axson-Flynn’s lawsuit. First of all, I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Second of all, I am going to be declaring my major in theatre next semester at the University of Utah.

I am trying out for the Actor?s Training Program in February.

Going into this major, I already know the “hidden” requirements. I know that there are going to be words which I don’t employ in my own personal speech. But I also know that being a performer and being a representation of a character means that it’s not really me saying those words.

Theatre, in and of itself, is an art form. Obviously, you communicate to the audience using language?language of all kinds.

I have done script study. I know that (good) authors do not use swearing casually. If crass or offensive words are supported by the text, and if they make sense for that character, I personally feel that there isn’t a huge problem. I also think, especially at a college level, censoring is ludicrous.

With theatre you are trying to make a point. Sure, you can make a point without saying f***. But which sentence do you think makes a stronger impact on the audience? Keeping in mind that if it upsets you, that is an impact.

Sure, maybe I am “putting my morals aside.” But theatre is something that I love to do, and sometimes there just aren’t any other words to describe how a character is feeling. So I would rather communicate an idea to the audience through harsh language than to have people leave a performance without truly obtaining the message of the piece.

As for the situation being anti Mormon, I think more information and evidence needs to be provided.

I don’t think that refusing to change the authors script is anti anyone.

What if there was a person that didn’t belong to any religion?no religious affiliation whatsoever? but this person didn’t want to swear because she or he believed that it isn’t a good value for anyone to posses? I think the professors would act the same way toward this person.

It’s simply the principle of the fact.

You can apply this to any career out there. It’s almost like taking Vincent Van Gogh’s Starry Night and changing all of the yellow color to red; it creates a whole new picture. One simple change, and the entire meaning is altered. It’s funny because all religious persons should understand the meaning of “changing the script.” One mistake while translating a passage from the Torah, Bible, Book of Mormon, Koran or Tao can make a huge difference!

I am very proud of Christina for not putting her morals aside. Although I don’t know if legal action is the way to go.

Perhaps, she should have been a little more cautious about the career choice she made. Or at least the school. Brigham Young University?s theatre department is probably very good, and I’m sure that they censor everything.

Anne Tonkovich

Freshman, Theatre (almost)