Monday, June 11, 2007

is this new?

Is this something we haven't heard before?

Theatre gets overdeveloped. There are fewer slots.
the NEA is not around. A lot of playwrights go write
for TV where they can make a living. TV is better and
more adventurous than ever before, especially HBO.

I don't know about you, but I never have watched the
Tonys. It is so irrelevant, as are all awards, but
also to what I think of as theatre. The exciting
stuff right now in theatre is not on broadway. This
is not news. The exciting stuff for me is the stuff
that cannot be done on TV like Eurydice at 2nd stage.
And countless other plays written for the stage in the
vocabulary of theatricality.

I for one am tired of the endless articles about what
is wrong with the theatre. We know this. Tell me
what's right with it. Or if you don't know what's
right with it, stop seeing broadway and start seeing
the shows that matter.

Sorry to be picking on this article, partially because
I agree with much of what the writer says.


Malachy Walsh said...


Philucifer [aka Charlie Willis] said...

It's not new to us, and probably not new to a lot of people in this city, but most people across the country equate "theatre" with Broadway's business of selling nostalgia. That's what they think theatre is, and it may be one of the reasons why they're not checking out their local indie theater who's producing the work of a new playwright, or -- in our case -- paying attention to the off and off-off scene.

Personally, I think it's great to see somebody talking about it at Salon. The more people who understand the shifts going on under the radar these days, the better the chance that they'll take a risk and come see something new.

Adam said...

I want that too but I wonder if it's more of a death knell than a go see some good theatre. It's more like--theatre sucks, go watch TV.

Philucifer [aka Charlie Willis] said...

Yeah, I can see that. It's certainly not the most constructive criticism ever put down on the page.