Who is the arbiter of good taste for you? arbiter: (n)
When you were a kid and your mother said “try these brussel sprouts they are good for you and tasty too”, did you just take her word for it and shovel those little baby cabbages that smell like feet in your mouth and say “gee, mom you are absolutely right!”?
Or when faced with the life decision of what kind of underwear guy you are going to be (sorry gals) and your junk was jumbled up in a bikini brief praying for a little airspace did you say foo on boxers?
Or gals when you are trying to figure out “your type” of guy do you take People magazine’s test on “the perfect mate” and stick to that type no matter your personal feelings?
My guess is NO to all three of these questions.
You have to taste the sprouts for yourself, try a pair of boxers and delete the duds from your e-harmony profile pronto.
I would have to say that choosing your entertainment would be high on that list of personal tastes. Not everyone is a Monty Python fan, not everyone likes classical music and nobody likes Justin Bieber.
But whose word are you going to take on that subject? I have close friends whose artful endeavors I admire and aspire to but I don’t always agree on everything they say about comedy, or a personal performance or the verbosity of a particular writer. It’s all subjective.
I challenge all of you theatre goers to be a little “old school” with your choices and go with your heart and gut and not what someone else feels or believes is en vogue.
Make a quick and simple list of the pros and cons of what you are considering seeing.
Asses how you are feeling at that particular moment and what you want to feel.
1. Happy and diverted from your daily grind (Spamalot)
2. Emotionally engaged in a romance (Passion)
3. Intellectually stimulated and challenged by political and/or moral issues… and more. (Enron)
The only way to ensure that there will always be a variety of choices out there is to cast your vote and make your voice be heard. Don’t allow these arbiters of theatrical good taste: critics, award committees, bloggers (myself included), entertainment news writers etc… dictate what can be on and succeed, in this case, on Broadway.
You “cast your vote” by buying a ticket to a show whose subject intrigues and compels you. You “cast your vote” by doing a little, very simple research (a few words on google will do) about who is involved with a production; director, writer, composer, star, designers… and judge for yourself on whether you have enjoyed their work in the past and what kind of career path they have chosen for themselves and if that is something that interests you. “Cast your vote” on whether this kind of theatre is something you want to consider seeing on Broadway.
YOU CONTROL THE TREND!
If you like jukebox musicals and want to see more of them – see them
If you like old fashioned musicals and want to see more of them – see them
If you like theatre that challenges you to think and feel – see them
Whatever you do, think for yourself.
All that being said, I HAVE to say that if you do have a penchant for smart, unique and thought provoking music theatre DO come see The Visit. There is no way to guarantee that works of art like this can survive unless you “cast your vote” and “make your voice heard”. One would think with Chita Rivera, Roger Rees, Kander & Ebb, Terrence McNally, John Doyle, Graziela Daniele, Jason Danieley (;D) that this would be a no brainer to run and that others of it’s ilk will always be on Broadway.
You have to let the theatre community know what you want to see. You actually do make a difference.
“You be good… and I’ll try.”