Thursday, August 10, 2006


Is a Theater Blog Just Homework After the Show?

A friend of mine teased me as we were on the way home from the mind-blowing, "Love's Labor's Lost" at the Shakespeare Theater. "So, have you given up on your blog?" he asked. "No updates since April." I sighed. The blog began as a way to chronicle, and never forget, the great, and not-so-great, shows I saw in Washington and elsewhere. Perhaps I could parley the blog into free tickets and discounts at theater gift shops and concession stands! Great influence over strangers' theatrical choices! Meetings with directors, actors, and people who give out free T-shirts that advertise a show!

Ahem. None of that has happened. Surprise, surprise. First, I like to go to the theater and then not have to write about it afterwards. It felt like homework. ("Go see a silly and enjoyable Marivaux romp, "The Game of Love and Chance," at the Folger Shakespeare Theater--and then WRITE ABOUT IT.")

Why write about that show? It was a fun evening of mistaken identities, servants masquerading as masters, men trying to deceive women who are deceiving men, all in period costume dancing around a bright lime-green set. Would I recommend it? If you're in a certain mood, well, yes, but, well, I dunno. Who are you, anyway? I can't take this responsibility!

If I don't like something, I don't want to write about it. It feels cruel. Take "David's Dance," at the Trumpet Vine Theater Company--a play so bad, with a plot so contrived, that I felt sorry for the actors. But a lot of work had gone into it, and the play verged on being worthwhile, when a religious talk show host was brought face-to-face with a gay man after one of her hateful homophobic rants. That could have been a show in and of itself, but it was only a short scene in a long evening. I stayed mum. "David's Dance," the title, must refer to a passage in the Bible where David danced before God, and there are endless commentaries about whether or not his dance was a sincere prayer, or an insult. It seemed to depend on whether or not you liked what he was wearing. Anyway, there was potential there, but unexploited.

So I am blogging much, much less. The latest dilemma is what to say about "Ellington" at MetroStage--beautiful music accompanied by a very superficial book. Everyone is raving about the show. Except me. I don't know much about Ellington, and after the show I still don't. I'm not a huge jazz fan. Maybe you have to be to enjoy this show.

I will get educated. I will try to have more confidence in my opinions, and try to justify them. But I like my theater without a writing assignment afterwards, so I won't be blogging much unless there is something I desperately want to remember and share.

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

  • The Footlights
  • Potomac Stages
  • The Ushers
  • DC Theatre Reviews
  • Trey Graham's Theater Blog
  • All the Capital's a Stage
  • Talkin' Broadway DC Pages
  • DC B roadway World
  • Calendar of Free, Cheap, and Pay-What-You-Can-Shows
  • WashP o's Cheap Tix List
  • About Me, If You Have Nothing Else to Read
  • ADA Theater and Special Events
  • A bout DC, Good for Guests
  • Boulevard's Guide to Washington Theaters
  • British Embassy Players
  • Community Theater Honors from WATCH
  • Ruby Griffith Community Theatre Awards
  • Crosstown Arts
  • Cultural Alliance of Greater Washington
  • Curtain Up DC
  • DC, MD, VA Arts
  • Helen Hayes On Stage Search
  • Go City Kids DC
  • League of W ashington Theaters
  • Maryland Community Theater Festival
  • Northern Virginia Theater Alliance
  • Ticketplace DC
  • TicketPLACE Today
  • Washington City Paper's Theater Listings
  • Washington Storytellers Theater
  • Washingtonian's Where & When
  • Washington Theater Review
  • Washington Post's Theater Pages
  • Washington DC Registry of Links
  • W Cities Regional Theater
  • WETA's Cultural Calendar
  • >