If You're Pre-Casting a Show, Just Be Honest About It

One of the more popular topics among community theatre discussions is the act of pre-casting roles. While it's "shunned" in many circles, there are plenty of other theatres that regularly practice it in order to get the exact talent they want. Many call it unethical, while other might call it necessary based on the show. 

Behind-the-scenes Q & A with the cast of the HUB's ‘Waiting for Waiting for Godot’

Opening this weekend at Club Café is Hub Theatre Company of Boston’s production of ‘Waiting for Waiting for Godot’ by Dave Hanson. Directed by Paula Plum, the production runs Friday, July 14 through Saturday, July 29 at Club Café, 209 Columbus Avenue in Boston’s Back Bay. Performances are Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturday at 7:30 pm and Sundays at 2 pm. All performances are Pay-What-You-Can and donations of non-perishable food items will be collected at all performances for local charities. For tickets and more information visit www.hubtheatreboston.org.  

The "Adventures" of Tech Week

Tech week is meant to bring everything together, from the light and sound cues to all the small details. Those details depending on who you ask are either considered adventures or headaches.

For me, it depends on the time of day you ask. If I am up at two in the morning after a 6-hour rehearsal because that’s the only free time I have, I would probably call it a headache. But if its tech Sunday and I can have cast members or others help me complete that task, it might be a fun little adventure in getting things done.

The Top 25 Plays of the 21st Century...So Far

While musicals certainly seem to dominate Broadway box offices, we've seen some incredible plays that will certainly go down as some of the best works of our time. 

These plays serve as the very best examples of what drama should be. Their creativity, depth, and characters have set a new standard for playwrights for generations to come. With comments by those who reviewed their productions, here are our updated picks for the Best Plays of the 21st Century...so far. 

The Theatre Industry Needs to Start Awarding Free Theatre Licensing to Low Income Schools

What has become a disturbing trend among high schools, is finding ways to take the cost of theatre productions out of school budgets and pass them on to students and their families. 

Whether it's "pay-to-play" policies or just eliminating it from the budget altogether, schools are constantly looking to make theatre productions cheaper or not do them at all. 

How Cast and Loose is Sparking a Revolution

Oh, the unglamorous life of an actor. The shit we go through and the crazy-ass roles we get sent in for and sometimes book. Also, the sexist and racist roles in Hollywood absolutely make me ask this question day in and day out. Why? 

My friend Lynne Marie Rosenberg has started a revolution of sorts called Cast and Loose. It started off as a Tumblr page and has grown into something so much more. 

Can We Stop Saying "Those who can't do, review"?

Let's put the "those who can't do, review" idea to rest
 
Over the years, reviewing theater at all levels, I have encountered the oft-repeated mantra that "those who can't do, review." Rarely invoked by an individual responding to a review with which they've agreed, it has a way of dismissing the reviewer's opinion by implying that he or she doesn't really know what they're talking about. In my experience, though it happens, this is rarely the case, and I always find the quote to be offensive.

Lessons Improv Taught Me

Part of the curriculum at the conservatory I am currently attending includes an improv class that everyone is required to take during the summer semester.

When I had read that, I was terrified.

I have been afraid of improv for years. I love watching it. I think being able to think on the spot and create art is beautiful, powerful, and brave. For me, it was taking part in improv that was frightening.

Is the Lack of Diversity on Broadway a Trickle Up Effect? Or Is it a Circular Problem?

I started to wonder why in 2017, it is still such a struggle for performers of color (POC) to be cast on major stages. With the high profile shows of Hamilton casting the majority of their actors specifically and intentionally with POC, and with large Asian casts in the formerly running The King and I and currently running Miss Saigon, it appears as if the general landscape of casts on the stage has changed. This is misleading.  This is not to say that Hamilton has not opened doors for actors and audiences as well, but the casting of Hamilton has not changed how other shows are cast. In addition, the roles for predominantly Asian casts often perpetuate negative stereotypes. In short, the numbers for POC in Broadway shows have gone up in the last couple of years, but mainly due to The King and I and Miss Saigon. The problem of real diversity on stage still exists.