I would disagree on the point of the Rep not know how to take a risk. The reason being the risk escalated after the chose the show.
It doesn't seem particularly risky for the Rep to do a show that has generated a lot of national media about a person who has local ties based on events that are currently relevant. That actually seems fairly safe to me. I wonder if they are currently reconsidering their decision.
(how Sloggy is that? Bashing the supposed, and unknown, intentions of an organization despite the fact that what they are actually doing is fairly noble.)
Maybe they read Cynthia Ozick's devastating teardown of the stupid propagandist in The New Republic.
I think the New York production closed because it just wasn't any good. It's a really engrossing play to read--but just to read--
The real question is whether the Rep's "risk" is artistic or financial.
"Topical plays", that is, those based on hot-topics-of-the-day generally have a very short life-span, and it's just as likely "Rachel Corrie"'s lifespan has already elapsed in artistic terms.
Yes, GDC does make some good points regarding the play's potential relevence for local audiences, but unlike recent examples of topical plays such as, "The Larimore Project", for instance, "Rachel Corrie" has garnered whatever notoriety it has due mainly to the controversy surrounding it's initial cancellation, which frankly had very little to do with the question of the play's artistic quality.
This might naturally lead one to conclude the Rep booked the show for its potential box office draw, than for its artistic quality, since presumably no one really was in a position to accurately gauge that quality at the time they made their decision.
Of course, now that the show is proving to be somewhat less than a critical hit, they're stuck: cancelling, for any reason, even financial at this point would give the impression of censorship - and who needs that kind of negative publicity? On the other hand, producing the show to less than moderately full houses is a losing proposition as well.
Maybe the best thing to do would be to let Book-It take a crack at the show: at least they might be able to translate some of the power of the "reading version" into a staged production. But, at the Rep? Well, I suppose if you want to see a girl run over on stage by a real bulldozer...
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