The Invisible City explores urban spaces from the perspective of a traveller, writer, and creator of theatre to illuminate how cities offer travellers and residents theatrical visions while also remaining mostly invisible, beyond the limits of attention.
The book explores the city as both stage and content in three parts. Firstly, it follows in pattern Italo Calvino's novel Invisible Cities, wherein Marco Polo describes cities to the Mongol emperor Kublai Khan, to produce a constellation of vignettes recalling individual cities through travel writing and engagement with artworks. Secondly, Gillette traces the Teatro Potlach group and its ongoing immersive, site-specific performance project Invisible Cities, which has staged performances in dozens of cities across Europe and the Americas. The final part of the book offers useful exercises for artists and travellers interested in researching their own invisible cities.
Written for practitioners, travellers, students, and thinkers interested in the city as site and source of performance, The Invisible City mixes travelogue with criticism and cleverly combines philosophical meditations with theatrical pedagogy.
Table of Contents
Acknowledgments; Introduction; 1. Thinking (with) the City; 2. Writing (on) the City; 3. Performing (in) the City; 4. Cities and Dreams: San Francisco; 5. Cities and Memory: Fara in Sabina; 6. Invisible Cities 1; 7. Cities and Speed: Tokyo; 8. Cities and Secrets: Paris; 9. Invisible Cities 2; 10. Cities and Violence: Rome; 11. Cities and Deception: Las Vegas; 12. Invisible Cities 3; 13. Cities and Empire: London; 14. Cities and Desire: Singapore; 15. Invisible Cities 4; 16. Directions; Appendix: Never the Same River Twice
Kyle Gillette is an associate professor of Human Communication and Theatre at Trinity University, Texas, U.S.A.