A cultural manifesto in six points.

1. Culture, darling. 

Nothing makes you appear worldlier and trendy and understanding of things beyond Game of Thrones family politics than uttering the sentence, “I saw a show at the theatre on the weekend”.  It has much more of a ring to it than, “I went and saw a movie”. In fact, that doesn’t have a ring to it at all. It kind of has a stench, of stale popcorn and cancelled plans.

2. You’re guaranteed to pick up. 

An actor’s kryptonite is their narcissism. Work this to your advantage. Observe:

Fellas, approach one of the lead actresses and tell her she sounded “just as, if not AS, good as Idina Menzel in her rendition of Take Me Or Leave Me”.

Ladies, tell one of the lead actors that their costume did wonders to their muscle definition. Repeat after me, “I could actually see your biceps through the period-appropriate winter coat”.

3. Free candy, probably

Everyone knows that the Theatre is your Grandmother’s local hang. And what do Grandparents have infinite supplies of? Wisdom? Yes. But more so, hard candies and Fisherman’s Friends. They’ll appreciate your youthful presence so much that you’ll earn a month’s supply. Play your cards right and you might even score a customised doily. Or a comparison to a young Rosalind Russell.

4. Educate yourself

I know in the grand scheme of things it’s not important whether you know a Tennessee Williams play from an Arthur Miller but there has to be some artsy take away that your University education bestows. Putting aside the plays themselves, the plot and character development contained within them could open your eyes to a multitude of ideas and information you would never have considered!

It’s also guaranteed by the Australian Debating Federation* (*nope) that if you make a high culture reference in an argument and the other person doesn’t know what you’re talking about, you have the upper hand. It’s like you’re all, “Chekhov mate”… Aye? AYE? I’m here all week.

5. You’re out, you’re doing things, you’re creating great Instagram photos. LOOK AT YOU!

#theatre #newfoundappreciation #culture #fun #demfishermansfriends #shakewhat? #SHAKESPEARE!

Screw your friend from High School who’s spending the year as an au pair in Sweden. You can have fun, too, dammit. Even if you’ve decided that live performance isn’t your deal, the rest of the world will believe you, I promise. That’s the beauty of socially marketed lies and the Valencia filter. You can go back to your jar of Nutella and Game of Thrones box set with some sort of peace of mind.

6. Support the human connection, man. 

All jokes aside, it’s vital to support something that a hell of a lot of hard work and passion went into creating, whether this is at a local or professional level. Unfortunately, it’s a dying art that doesn’t garner the same appreciation it did before blockbuster films starring symmetrical robot people became popular. By simply being an audience member, you can take solace in the knowledge that you helped to keep the beauty of live performance and human interaction relevant. You’re part of something bigger.

This is what the wonderful Robin Williams in Dead Poets Society would want you to do. Visit www.stagewhispers.com.au for local theatre listings or www.au.timeout.com/sydney/theatre to see the pros do their thang.