Our Girl (who says hi) and I just got back from seeing the Paul Taylor Dance Company perform Taylor’s Sunset, Dream Girls, and Promethean Fire at City Center. If you’re in New York, go. If not, eat your heart out.
We’ll both be blogging about tonight’s performance at some point in the next day or two, but not just yet. Aside from having a lot of catching up to do, we’re planning to watch L’Atalante before crashing.
In the meantime, here are a few fresh links for you to chew on:
– SlowLearner looks at the high cost of playgoing in New York from the perspective of a budding playwright:
Sometimes reading Time Out New York puts me in despair. One of the reasons I moved to New York was all the theater, right? Just about everything goes up here at some point. I can catch everything, see what everybody is up to – a nonstop showroom of all the latest thoughts and innovations in playwriting, staging, design, and performance.
Of course they all cost about sixty dollars.
Okay, that’s not fair. I go to plays all the time that cost fifteen dollars. Showcases, Off-Off-type stuff. Some of which is terrific. But I’m always aware when I’m paying fifteen dollars to get into a play that I’m about to see one of those labors of love that will lose the laborers themselves at least several hundred dollars and probably several thousand.
So I understand why the producers of new plays by Tracy Letts, Doug Wright, Nicky Silver, Alice Tuan, Charles L. Mee, Wallace Shawn, A.R. Gurney, Bryony Lavery, Howard Korder, Craig Lucas, or Paul Rudnick might want to charge a bit more than fifteen dollars admission. They’re trying to run a business. (No snickering in the back, please.)
Here’s the thing: between the basic expenses of my existence, the non-theater things I do for fun, the occasional steep requirements like air travel, shoes, or dental work, and the various fifteen dollar plays I attend because the people in those plays came and saw my fifteen dollar play, I can really only go to one of these $50-60 deals about once every six weeks….
As a former publicist myself, I see his point about the hopelessly reductive nature of a press release which has the potential of rendering the most sublime into the most banal. Who would see these plays?
* Two homeless men wait for a man who never comes. Then they do it again.
* A family of actors sits around talking for four-and-a-half hours before they’re interrupted by their drug-addict mother.
* An architect falls in love with a girl a third his age, then jumps off the roof of a church.
* A Danish prince can’t decide who to kill, then kills everybody. (This world premiere production explores the ways we change, the compromises we make, and the price we pay for our life choices.)
O.K., I give up–point taken!
– While we’re in a theatrical mood, here’s a story from the New York Post that needs no comment from me:
For the glittering first-night audience at “Fiddler on the Roof” last week, the sudden death of Jerome Robbins’ sister just before the curtain went up was a terrible tragedy.
But for the show’s musicians, it was a chance to grab some overtime.
In what is surely the most ridiculous example of union overreach since the stagehands used to make producers pay for someone to raise the curtain on shows that had no curtain, the musicians at “Fiddler” have put in for overtime for the opening-night performance, which was delayed due to Sonia Cullinen’s death in the theater that night.
According to union rules, if a performance runs more than three hours, musicians are entitled to overtime. “Fiddler” was supposed to begin at 6:30 p.m., but it was delayed for almost an hour as paramedics tried to revive Cullinen, 91, who had collapsed in the aisle….
All together now: eeuuww!
See you tomorrow. Jean Vigo awaits.