The PI has a Theater Critic?
I thought they just asked grumpy patrons what they thought about plays ...
Eventually, you all may have nobody but me.
OtB and Mike Daisey wouldn't have a problem with that.
Newspapers are dying, yet weekly newspapers are thriving. Right? I mean, if everyone is reading online and no one is picking up the print edition then print ad revenue will continue to be there, right?
Misha Berson is a nasty, tiresome, spoilt old bitch.
Where did Kiley say that weeklies were thriving?
What, you're going to exclude Miryam Gordon from SGN? They're a weekly publication, right?
And I suppose this means the monthly "contribution" to your "retirement fund" is going to go up next time as well.
What I'm wondering is how relevant theater criticism is to the P-I's readership to begin with, or the Times', for that matter. I just don't think arts coverage has been a strength of either of the dailies. I'm a semi-regular P-I reader and I definitely look elsewhere for arts news and reviews. The only time I read Adcock generally is when he's writing about somebody I know, and a lot of the other theater people I know are the same way. If theater people don't care about the P-I's theater coverage, who would?
Also, don't forget we've still got Longenbaugh's endlessly clever musings over at the Weekly. I can see how you would leave him off the list since he doesn't seem to see or write about shows, but his column does have "Theater" right there in the title.
Matthew: I left Longenbaugh off because a) he's a freelancer and b) he's not a critic.
He wrote, when he started his column, that he'd sworn off reviewing so it wouldn't interfere with his career as a playwright.
Don't get too smug there, Brendan. I never heard of you until this post. That's because I HATE theater - it's boring and only interesting to those in that little drama circle.
Like Baby Dayliner said, "Critics pass away like bad news, la la la"
pish tush. don't theatre companies hate critics anyway? you'd think they'd be happy with fewer critics/reviewers around. after all, a bad review=bad box office.
I was totally bummed when my press release got bumped back. Joe was a really nice guy.
Joe Adcock was the perfect reviewer from from a performer's/theatre's perspective.
If he gave you a good review, you could say "The P-I said 'A delightful cacophony of adsurd theatricality'"
If you got a bad review you could just say "There goes crazy Joe Adcock again, he doesn't understand theatre, isn't he a professional gardner?" or "Joe Adcock doesn't like Radiohead, so obviously he didn't get it" or "Joe Adcock didn't understand our jokes, because he's older than time itself."
Joe Adcock was the perfect cover against a bad review.
Actually, no. Theatre artists (and institutions) dislike critics who get above themselves. Kenneth Tynan characterized his job as "giv[ing] permanence to something impermanent."
Bertolt Brecht had this to say: "What they say about my plays doesn't matter, my plays will survive the critics, but what they say about my productions matters very much because what they write is all that posterity will know of the subject."
if only mischa wasn't so talentless
But Brendan, didn't you read Adcock's exit interview/last column? Rhapsodizing Shakespeare? Seriously? I got that in college. Give me a theater critic who can grapple with what a company like WET is trying to do.
thank you, laurence. i'm still not crazy about theatre critics. most of them can't even WRITE, let alone about theatre.
and i LOVED you in angels in america. Please do a revival, stat!
p.s.: even though john simon is an excellent writer, i still hate him. so there.
Eerie and sad coincidence: a theatre critic in Arizona committed suicide after being laid off by his paper.
#18 - WOW - what theater
What theatre artists actually want is advocates in the media, not critics. We know how to listen to intelligent criticism--we work by a critical-response method every day of our lives in rehearsal and in design meetings. That's how theatre is made. By the time a show opens to the public, everyone involved knows exactly where it works and doesn't work.
The reason newspaper reviewers are reviled (by some) is because they expose our weakness to the public. No one in any profession would willingly invite a person to superficially pick at their faults in the newspaper unless there was some hidden benefit. And that benefit is exposure.
Joe and Misha do the Seattle theatre industry a great service by just showing up. Crowded in between a dozen television and movie reviews, it really means very little what they write. Their presence on the page says to the readership that at least these people think a night in the theatre is worth their time.
So losing Joe is less an issue than losing the P-I.
Do readers know the difference between a review and a preview? I think not. If theatre's role, (and the critic's role) is to challenge and educate....then I argue previews are more important than reviews.
What we need are arts "advocates" at newspapers, NOT critics. We need people to tell the story "behind the story." Isn't that what reporters do? In 90% of Joe's articles he was neither a critic nor an advocate. He rarely told the story BEHIND the story. He mostly gave us the "cliff notes"
So let's not get bogged down with the word critic. Let's find the arts "advocates" in the media to come to shows and help spread the gospel through whatever means they have at their disposal!
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