Artist Stokley Towles has woven stories from the working lives of King County Metro bus drivers into a performance piece he stages aboard a bus parked at a bus stop.
In his one-man performance piece of about 50 minutes, Towles shares stories he gathered in interviews of more than 30 Metro bus drivers about their experiences on the job. Each vignette begins with Towles reading a quote from a driver he interviewed. One reads: “You gotta be a teacher, a psychiatrist, a doctor, a lawyer, a parent, the whole nine yards, and this all in one trip.” Towles says he tries to explore how drivers take on those different roles: “How do they mentally survive the work?” One audience member Thursday was Metro driver Jeannetta Moreland, who got to take in the performance while she kept an eye on the bus. “Most people don’t notice the driver,” said Moreland, who says she knows all of the drivers Towles interviewed. “I never looked at my life the way he just did. It was all on point.” For information on upcoming performances, visit www.stokleytowles.com. Bus ridership is expanding rapidly in and around Seattle. For a collection of multimedia stories about riding Metro, go to seattletimes.com/tag/bus-life.