When not incarcerated, Sirius radio host John DeVore writes plays. What kind of plays? Sophisticated ones. Like The Sophisticates, which opens on June 1. We caught up with John at a recent parole hearing to find out what he has to say about the Pretentious process.
What exactly makes your show so damn pretentious anyway?
It's not "pretentious." It is sincere. My play, The Sophisticates, is a profound work of art that nibbles at the nerve endings of the self-conscious, like a melancholy incubus with a liberal arts degree. While the other shows in the festival aspire to "pretentiousness," my show strives to molest the unknowable, and thereby, I hope to achieve artistic sublimity; I am happy to let my so-called "colleagues" rut in their collective creative feces, pining for validation from the press and the artistic elite, while I lurch, from the clutch of the metaphysical grave, to stroke the cheek of God
Name some obscure influences on your work – extra points for unpronounceability.
Jerzy Grotowski. Michel Foucault. Michael Gardner.
The late Roland Barthes once wrote "For the theatre one needs long arms; it is better to have them too long than too short. An artiste with short arms can never, never make a fine gesture." Explicate.
Long arms are important, especially if one's artistic cock is giraffe-like.
In what ways do you plan on alienating your audience? Cite an intentionally opaque or confusing moment within your production.
Once you are all dead, you'll understand how brilliant I was and am.
Which other Pretentious Festival show will you declare as your sworn ideological enemy, and why?
Hamlet is for fuckwads. Poeta nascitur, non fit.
Please give us the gist of the acceptance speech you would use were you to win one of our Pretentious Awards.
"John DeVore ... has asked me to tell you, in a very long speech which I cannot share with you presently—because of time—but I will be glad to share with the press afterward—that he must... very regretfully cannot accept this very generous award. And the reason for this being... are the treatment of American Indians today by the theater industry… excuse me… and on stage, and also the recent happenings at Wounded Knee. I beg at this time that I have not intruded upon this evening and that we will, in the future…our hearts and our understanding will meet with love and generosity. Thank you on behalf of John DeVore." – To be delivered by John DeVore's humble servant, RJ Tolan.