For When You Doubt Yourself

For When You Doubt Yourself

In any part of life, doubting yourself is inevitable.

From working for a promotion to applying for colleges, there’s a point where you stop and ask yourself: Am I sure that I can do this? Even the most confident people have these moments of doubt, whether they realize it or not. Unfortunately, it’s one of the most common feelings in the world. And when you’re working in the arts? That feeling multiplies by ten at every email with an audition or job opening, thinking of the hundreds of others who probably received the exact same email. It may not help having the “starving artist” reputation that surrounds our decisions either.

Read More

Get Involved in Your Local Community Theater

Get Involved in Your Local Community Theater

Sometimes community theater gets a bad rap.

I have a few choice words to say to those people that my bosses would never let me publish under the Press’ banner. 

Why this is — I’m not really sure. Maybe they’d rather go see a professional show with working actors. Maybe they’re not into live theater. I can only conclude that these opinions were concluded by those who have never really given it a chance.

Read More

The Balancing Act of Being Both a Playwright and a Critic

The Balancing Act of Being Both a Playwright and a Critic

I love playwriting, and the creative rush I get from writing so many plays – and often, seeing them produced – is practically what I live for. I’m also a theatre critic, and thus have the chance to see a diverse range of shows and offer my analysis and opinions of them. Depending on which person you talk to, if they’re familiar with my writing, they might know that I’m a playwright and a critic, but they may know me better for being one over another. There also may be some who know me only as a playwright, but have never read any of my reviews; or perhaps they’ve seen my past reviews of shows, but are totally unfamiliar with my work as a playwright.

Read More

If You're Charging People to be in Your Show, You Can't Cast Your Kid in the Lead Role

Untitled+collage+(1)+(1).jpg

Dear Moms and Dads who run participation fee theatre programs, 

If you're charging people to be in your shows, you cannot cast your kid in the lead role. Period. It's that simple. 

For the record, I have no problem with theatre companies that charge fees in order to be in their shows. Usually, these fees are reasonable and made public before anyone auditions for a particular production. They also help to ensure that a production can go off without a financial hitch. 

However, I find it incredibly unfair that someone has to pay $100 to be in a show when a director's son or daughter is playing the lead for free. 

Now if you or your kid is paying a fee, just like everyone else, that's a different story. But I've seen countless instances where they aren't and are just given a lead role by their director mom or dad. Nepotism in theatre is bad enough but this is even more unfair. 

We all want the best for our kids, as a dad myself, I completely understand. And in many cases, we want to create opportunities for them to flourish. However, rigging a system for your child's benefit doesn't help anyone. 

Photo: The Rose Theatre

Why Exactly Do You Go to the Theatre?

Why Exactly Do You Go to the Theatre?

Why do people go to the theater? It’s a question to ponder on and there really is no single answer to it in my mind. I think there is something special about going to a theater and seeing a show versus going to see a movie. There is something about having that action right in front of you. After all, there is nothing like live theatre. I imagine it’s probably an escape for some people other than it being a pleasure. I know it is an escape for me and it brings me so much joy, excitement, and contentedness that I’ve kind of become addicted. Not only is it my passion, but it is a huge part of my life. Without it, I would feel as if I lost my imagination.

Read More

High School Theatre Made Me a Better Person

High School Theatre Made Me a Better Person

My niece was in a musical recently and I went to watch it.

It was a group of kids age 10 to 14 and they were delightful. For many, it was their first time on stage.

I sat in the dark of the theatre and blubbered quietly to myself – not just because it was my amazing niece on stage, but it reminded me of what a powerful experience it is to take part in youth theatre.

Read More

It's Still Important to See Shakespeare Performances

It's Still Important to See Shakespeare Performances

To me, Shakespeare is a bit of a touchy subject in the theatre industry and that’s for one reason, either you love it or you hate it. It’s the one genre that I believe to be the most challenging in terms of language. When you have challenging language, then understanding the plot and topics discussed becomes a challenge as well. It’s like a chain. If you don’t understand it from the start, it makes things hard later on and people tend to give up on it. Regardless of all of this, I believe Shakespeare is important in the sense that it’s where true theatre started. William Shakespeare is a name everyone knows regardless of if you enjoy his work or not. He is a classic playwright that kind of served as a basis for theatre and helped build it up.

Read More

Yellowface in 'Jerome Robbins Broadway' is as Confusing as it is Inappropriate

Yellowface in 'Jerome Robbins Broadway' is as Confusing as it is Inappropriate

The historic and prolific St. Louis Municipal Opera Theatre (commonly known as The Muny), is marking a rare feat for regional theatres, its 100th season. It's a milestone that should rightfully be celebrated in not only the St. Louis theatrical community but here in New York City as well, as many a performer has graced that stage at one time or another. 

However, their season is off to a bumpy start, according to some who have seen how they've decided to stage various numbers in their production of Jerome Robbins' Broadway. The show, which serves as a tribute anthology to shows that Robbins worked on, features fully produced recreations of his choreography. That means these numbers are done in the context of the shows their from and with full costuming. And that is where the problem lies. 

Read More