Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Keep on bloggin' in the free world...

Those of you who followed the link a few posts ago may have noticed that I am now blogging about theatre over on the Globe and Mail website at the unambiguously titled Nestruck on Theatre blog. (NOT, for short.)

Though I have been blogging for five years in this little corner of the Internet and have got used to the occasional skirmish, I must admit I was a wee bit shocked to suddenly find a prominent playwright and director I admire in the comments telling me that my reviews are "quickly dashed off, ill considered, poorly thought out, and completely subjective knee jerk reaction[s] to a painstakingly constructed, carefully considered, well thought out piece of theatre". Yoicks. I guess this is why Terry Teachout doesn't allow comments on his blog...

But, you know, if I can dish it out, as it were, then I should be able to take it. And I am quite excited to be trying something relatively new for a critic, foolhardy though it may be.

The question salient to you folks who come here, of course, is what am I do to with Off the Fence (formerly On the Fence until I had a loss of faithlessness in England). Obviously, I must dedicate myself to my new home for a bit, but I feel that there will always be important non-theatre issues that will draw me back here.

For instance, here is my question about Katy Perry's song I Kissed a Girl, which I love and hate myself for loving. Is the way that she sings the word "it" over two syllables the most annoying moment in popular song in the past five years - or is it pure mothereffing genius?

6 comments:

MK Piatkowski said...

I just figured you'd use NOT for theatre-related stuff and use this for your political and musical stuff. Makes sense to me.

Anonymous said...

FYI. Your reviews are NOT "quickly dashed off, ill considered, poorly thought out" etc. Quite the contrary; I've never seen such open-minded decency in a Toronto theatre critic.

Some of us prefer to comment anonymously, and cannot do so at the official Globe page. "Off the Fence" is a place where we can type you the odd unsigned missive ...

Unless, of course, you prefer to know with whom you are corresponding, in which case I suggest you disable this site's anonymous option.

Anonymous said...

Re: Katy Perry. "Annoying" and "pure genius" are not necessarily two different things.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps the writer wasn't referring to you, in particular, when talking about 'ill considered, poorly thought out' reviews, but was instead referring to a general malaise afflicting many theatre reviewers; and making a geniune and legitimate comparison between the amount of thought that goes into a production and the amount of thought that goes into reviewing it. After all, if theatre artists spend months putting together a piece of art, I think it is fair to say that they have spent more time on it than the reviewer has. I don't think it's really even an arguable point, and perhaps the writer was simply expressing his/her frustration at the inequity of the situation as he/she sees it. Perhaps, also, the writer equally admires you for trying to reach out, and is making the comment in hopes that you will give the whole matter some serious thought. If you want to engage artists, you should be willing to do so without getting peevish about it; which I am happy to see you are trying not to do.

mary said...

Aren't you kind of twisting the playwright's words in your claim that he said your reviews were "quickly dashed off, etc." (Ironic of you, given that the conversation in question was about "slanted perspectives.") It seemed pretty clear he was making a general observation about reviews in general.

IMO, a reviewer should see a show at least twice before publishing a review, but I know that ain't gonna happen any time soon!

Sarah said...

Use this space for your personal stuff. Life in Toronto. Random observations. Political musings. Stuff like that. You know, the kind of stuff you used to write about!