What happens when AI takes on one of ‘most human’ art forms?
“I was ready to tackle it,” Parker said, “And the environment that was created made it seem very natural to tackle that. I feel like both Keenan and Jay have done a good job of creating an environment where dealing with the intense subjects can be done in a realistic way that doesn’t leave you uncomfortable.”
Oliphant, who worked as an assistant director for “Hadestown” on Broadway, said “The Singularity Play” has only grown more relevant with time.
“We’ve fallen into this moment where the potential of this play happening outside of the play in a real-world setting is so high right now,” Oliphant said.
The play takes its name from a technology term referring to a hypothetical moment when AI becomes so advanced that it permanently alters humanity. In the material world, it’s not a reality that Stull particularly wants to see. He smiled ruefully when recalling an April Fool’s Day joke posted by American Theater Magazine this month, suggesting that a Silicon Valley company had commissioned an AI to write five plays.
“Playwrights are so threatened anyway. There are so many playwrights and so few opportunities,” Stull said. “It’s such a difficult thing to think that AI would be actually, legitimately taking these very few opportunities in an industry that’s difficult to find remuneration in.”
Oliphant emphasized that “The Singularity Play” is not an attempt to capitalize on the current moment of pitting technology against humanity, but rather to pose some questions about the relationship between the two.
“My hope is that people walk out considering what humanity’s relationship to creation is,” Oliphant said. “I hope the question lingers with the audience as we continue to grapple with the ever-changing social, political, natural world that we are in right now.”
“The Singularity Play” runs from Thursday through Sunday at Farkas Hall in Cambridge.