Editor’s Desk

Theatre and Democracy

Every four years America engages in a great community exercise – the national election. In its inception, we can presume that the purpose of this election was to give the varied and often disparate ideas of American citizens a cohesive voice through a representative process. The results of the election would supposedly reflect the general good of the nation. It didn’t quite work out that ...

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New Theaters

How often do you go to see a show without having any idea of what the play is about? If you’re like most people, you go to shows for one of three reasons: you know the material, and want to see it again; you know someone in the show and want to support them; or, someone you know has recommended a production and you’re feeling ...

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Picking Your Campfire, Helping Good Theatre Grow

How do you pick a show? It’s hard to put a solid number on how many shows open in Los Angeles every year. The best guesstimates are somewhere between a low of seven hundred to a high a few years back when there were more than fifteen hundred productions mounted in a single year. So, if we assume that there is an even distribution of ...

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Theatre, Spectacle and The Common Man

Every now and then the question arises, “What is theatre?” We live in an age where we have come to expect theatricality in virtually everything, from government to business, from sports and religion. Our entire mass media entertainment structure is built on theatrical presentation and selling personalitis is being done in like fashion. So when the world around us is theatrical, what do we have ...

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A Bit of Berkeley in Washington

Each spring something like 500 advocates descend on Washington, DC for Americans for the Arts’ annual Arts Advocacy Day.  The event—actually two days, one day of training and issues briefings, and one day filled with visits to Congress—is the largest of its kind.  Most of the delegates, not surprisingly, are arts professionals, lots of administrators, a few artists, some teachers and the smattering of highly ...

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What’s a Critic For?

California is blessed with a plethora of theatre. We have so much theatre that it is probably fair to say that it is literally impossible to see every play produced in Los Angeles or San Francisco. On the average, there are at lest eight shows that open each week in each city. By numbers alone, we are overwhelmed. So how do we decide what to ...

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All This!… For How Much?

Walking into a theatre is always an exciting experience. There’s the anticipation of seeing something new, or if it’s a show we know, seeing a new interpretation. There’s a feeling of comfort, a willingness to be open and be on the receiving end of entertainment, enlightenment and to some degree a sense of awe for the spectacle we are about to see. That’s what is ...

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Theatre… and Community

A couple of weeks ago, I posted a comment, which struck up a lively conversation, not just on Big Cheap, but on other sites as well.  And while all of the discussions were germane, the conversation very quickly moved to the old saw . . . is Los Angeles a theatre town? LA is absolutely a theatre town, there is more theatre produced here than ...

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Is a Discounted Ticket a Good Deal?

Here we are in the midst of another election cycle, and though some of the candidates may try to distract us with vague issues, the economy should remain our primary focus. When we take our eyes off the fact that we deep down, are still worried about the economy. The regurgitated social issues become scabs that we pick at, looking to make the opposition bleed ...

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Church and Theatre

Recently, a theatre company looking to enlist new members put out a promo piece which included all the usual attractions that a company offers to bring in new members. However there was one additional point, “build spiritual awareness”, which raised a cry in the theatre community . . . Is theatre church? Why is this even a question? Church is for worship – spiritual fellowship, ...

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