Monday, November 26, 2007

OOB in the Press?

It's thanksgiving as i write this, and i just read this again:
i can't for the life of me figure out why mainstream journalists in New York seem so almost-stubborn in their refusal to acknowledge Off-Off-Broadway.
In the midst of this strike, with media struggling to advise tourists and would-be Broadway audiences of alternatives to the closed theatres, some of these guys can't bear to bring themselves to utter "Off-Off-Broadway". I mean, seriously, isn't that an odd sort of selective blindness? Do they honestly believe OOB doesn't hold a legitimate place in the artistic landscape of this city and country?
Especially now, when Broadway tickets can cost literally $450. No one can afford that. Big companies with expense accounts can, and very rich tourists can. Outside of that there is only a tiny fraction of people who can and will afford that, and if that's what Broadway is choosing as its target market now, then why would the rest of us even care?
There is a better alternative for human beings who want to see live theatre.
Off-Off-Broadway. Affordable Theatre.
Maybe we should start marketing it that way.
You can even think about it as "local and organic" if you want. No out-of-town tryouts, no artificial ingredients or helicopters. But the bottom line is
1) you're going to sit close enough to actually see the actors' facial expressions (unlike the last 4 broadway shows i saw).
2) you're going to experience the show in a more intimate environment - usually less than 100 other people
3) you're likely to see real creative exploration, risk-taking and experimentation
4) you're likely to see real innovation (BlessedUnrest's recent show featured the most innovative use of a plastic tarp i've ever seen. absolute theatrical magic from a $30 prop/set piece)
5) you're ticket will cost less than a day's pay
Here, for about 20 bucks you can see something that just might change your life. It's shameful that our press refuses to step it up and properly cover this amazingly vibrant and critical theatre.
Is there something else we should be doing to "merit" their attention?

Nick Micozzi

Executive Director

New York IT Awards

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