There was a time before children and endless responsibilities when I would attend between 9 and 13 stage performances a year(13 being the high mark since 1986, accomplished in 1995 when I would reach the tender age of thirty). Now, although I consider being a Dad the greatest job in the world(one which I hope at least some people think I’m pretty good at), my average of 4 to 6 shows a year since 2005 sometimes saddens me. I LOVE the theatre nearly as much as film. That’s why this blog is considered a film and theatre site, with reviews and features covering both. How do I see so many movies? That’s easy. Netflix, Video On Demand, access to the occasional screener, and sometimes just good old-fashioned multiplex and art-house attendance, gives me plenty of avenues. Also, my reliance on methods that most people I talk to would never dream of doing(many of these same folks somehow manage to see every television show in existence, not to mention all the team sports broadcasts for the vast majority of guys). I go to films alone, and I watch most films at home by myself, too. You tell your wife you are heading out to the ball game with the guys on a Friday night? I’m zipping over to the local theater for “The Tree of Life”. Day off from work and you’re settling in for some Letterman or Leno with the spouse? I’m popping “eXistenZ” into the DVD player after everyone is asleep. This is what I do, and I find ways to feed my passion. Also, I have no qualms about watching a film in two or three different sections. Ideally, everything would be seen in one sitting. But if the choice is seeing, let’s say, Kurosawa’s “The Seven Samurai”, or not—I’m going to opt for the multiple trips. Want to consider yourself an educated cinephile? Then you’ve got to see a lot of films. There’s really no way around it. I can’t respect someone’s opinion of Lars von Trier’s “Melancholia” if they’ve happened by it on cable television, tell me how much they hated it, and then stare at me blankly if I ask them if they even know who the director is or what he’s done before(I go through this on a regular basis, btw). People like that don’t know shit—they just think they do. But I digress. How do I cover more theatre on the blog? Hey…how about filmed theatre! There’s plenty of that available on Netflix…a lot of it on streaming. Certainly, not as good as the real thing, but a viable alternative. And much more palatable than heading to my town’s community theatre and savaging the performances of well-meaning amateurs(I have no desire to be too mean). In my attempt to do, at least, one theatre piece per month, I will now utilize my access to filmed stage work as an acceptable option. It’s better than nothing, right? Two more things: I am slated to attend off-Broadway’s hit “Tribes” in September, so stay tuned for that review. And also, this diatribe you’re reading is officially my 100th post since starting this little adventure in early January. That includes 97 reviews and features, plus the three original e-mails that began this monstrosity in the first place. So, I’ve reached the century mark. I guess I like doing this.
The Theatre Dilemna…and how to solve it