We’re surrounded by them, and we always have been. They stand tall, high and mighty, constructed with brick and mortar to protect us from what we fear. Many times they’re physical, but perhaps more often we construct metaphorical walls between others and ourselves. Our walls are constructed, too, to protect the deepest parts of ourselves. We fear that we won’t compare or measure up to others, that we might lose friends, or that others may pass judgment. We construct walls because we are afraid that others might not understand us, but we also construct them because we refuse to understand others.
Not only do our walls stand tall, but we paint them to show the world what we think they want to see: our perfections broadcasted, our uniqueness hidden. All of this is done because we avoid vulnerability, because we find it easier to live within the confines of our own protection instead of venturing into our individuality and sharing it unabashedly with others.
But what if walls didn’t protect us? What if they did us more harm than good? What if the sight of the walls we build is what causes others to build theirs higher? What if desperate attempts to guard ourselves actually make it more difficult for others to understand us?
We believe that there is beauty in vulnerability. This year’s show wants you to Drop the Wall, to tear down your façades brick by brick and share the beauty of your humanity with others. Share with us your best and brightest moments, your darkest and most raw, stories that will make us laugh and stories that will make us cry. We want you to ask yourself:
What kind of walls do you see on campus--in the dorms, between ND and the South Bend community, between individuals and groups, between students and faculty or staff? What would these same groups be like if the walls between them didn’t exist? What walls were we born with? What walls did you build yourself? Which walls have you straddled, feeling like you belong on both sides, while simultaneously on neither? What if instead of building walls, we built windows to see each other and doors to visit one another? Is it ever important to build walls? For our own safety? For our own protection? Do we build walls to keep ourselves in, or to keep others out? Think physically as well as metaphorically, and share your stories with us.
The more we cast our walls down, the less we need them in the first place.
Submissions are now open for 2019's Show Some Skin: Drop the Wall. Start writing! Go here to submit a monologue.
For tips on writing monologues, check out Show Some Skin past director Lucas Garcia's video below.