Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Theatre people seem resentful of this. Why?

Theatre is something I love. And it will always be there for me.

If I were a regularly produced playwright, I'd be there for theatre, more often.

But I'm not. And the few playwrights I know who are getting produced are usually found on their knees looking for money.

That's why I'm in LA, not NY (where the showcase code and real-estate mean a three person play can cost as much as $30,000 in a house that doesn't seat 50), and not SF (where there's no business to live on). It's also why I work in advertising.

So, this note from The Playgoer didn't surprise me. And shouldn't surprise anyone else.

If I ever do make a decent amount of money, one thing I'll definitely enjoy doing with it is putting together a theatre company and producing my work - and the work of my friends - as it should be made.

The good thing about LA is that, here, not only do I think I can have kids, but I think I can put up some of that theatre even WITHOUT a decent amount of money.


nick said...

Theatre seems so fun in LA. I mean that as neither positive nor negative, just descriptive of a context, a place where theatre is cast as TV and film’s kid brother. Nothing fun about NYC, but theatre seems kick-ass real, even the small shows. Again it’s context. The art form is expected to “represent”, so it does. New York as center of the national press facilitates in this representation to culture and history. I envy LA at times, the idea of it, anyway. But it scares me, too. How an oak tree on one block will be turning into its autumn colors, and on the next block another oak is starting to bud into spring. Haunts like a premonition. As if some supernatural whacko shit is going pop out of all that fun-in-the-sun. Something unimaginable, not quite the Rapture, but much more than a catastrophic earthquake. Meanwhile, my dangerous fringe hood in Brooklyn has gentrified into Sesame Street over the last twenty years, and all day jobs remain interesting and keep me scrabbling for my identity along with "the rent."

Malachy Walsh said...

You've sort of put your finger on it. NY is super-hyper-focused -- all those people jammed into every square inch.

Whereas here in LA, it's all scattershot and defocused.

And since theatre here is considered irrelevant to some degree, maybe, just maybe, it's easier to take a chance 'cuz you know you're not going to get stepped on if it comes out uneven and weird.

Don R. Hall said...

I never resent someone for making money but I reserve the option to openly mock those who make money with crap, the same way I feel no qualms castigating someone selling 'magic elixirs' and 'guaranteed to slim your waistline' gadgets.

Good writing is good writing, whether it is read, performed on a stage, televised or filmed. Anyone actually making money doing it has my vote.

TOPPSY said...

Hey Hey

I'm trapped in 12 pt courier, could you let me out please.

Malachy Walsh said...

Toppsy, are you an art director? Cuz that's what an art director would say.