Witnessing in theatre

Lavery’s first association with the word ‘witnessing’ is a witness in trial. Witnessing is not a word she uses to describe what happens in theatre. Being a writer of theatre plays, for Lavery the definition of a play is where one group of people comes to present a story to another group of people.

The first group is the people who’ve made the play and the second group is the audience, but they have to breath the same air. They have to be alchemically changed, so simply observing is not possible. They alter the performance and the performance alters them, physically and mentally.
It is a construction of artistic deeds that makes up a presentation of a truth. It involves actors trying to seem like believable human beings in a story, which reveals their character or their lack of character. What they have to do is to convince the audience that it could happen or they have to delight the audience that a fantasy could occur. It has to seem like the truth, but of course it isn’t the truth because the characters are played by people who are not them. It is the opposite from real life, suggests Lavery, because theatre tries to represent a reality that’s unreal. By telling stories, theatre conveys truth in the end, Lavery explains.