Suscribe to Weekly RiverCitiesReader.com Updates
* indicates required

View previous campaigns.

Latest Comments

  • GET A GRIP
    Get a grip, I bet the other little girl who...
  • ...
    Love the show - Daniel Mansfield
  • On target
    Everyone I have shared your editorial finds it really close...
  • Retired teacher
    Loved reading how such an outstanding citizen was able to...
  • Re: name correction
    Thank you for bringing the error to our attention, Lorianne,...
Amass for the Dead: "Elegies: A Song Cycle," at the Village Theatre through May 24 PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Mike Schulz   
Wednesday, 21 May 2008 02:26

the cast of Elegies: A Song Cycle From the opening minutes of Elegies: A Song Cycle, the debut presentation by the Riverbend Theatre Collective, it's clear that the production is going to be beautifully performed. An uninterrupted, 90-minute collection of reminiscences by composer William Finn, the revue finds Allison Collins-Elfline, Patrick Gimm, Jackie Madunic, Dana Joel Nicholson, and Bryan J. Tank offering musical tributes to people (and pets) that Finn loved and lost, and they form an intimidatingly strong vocal ensemble, excellent in their solos and even finer in harmony.

A good thing, too, because the work itself has been so specifically designed for an upscale, theatre-going New York audience that Riverbend's presentation oftentimes runs the risk of alienating its attendees. The theme of death is, of course, universal, and there are songs and individual lyrics here that can't help but be affecting. But Elegies seems an incredibly tricky piece to pull off effectively, and the overall delight of this production lies in just how well the performers (also credited as co-directors) navigate around considerable obstacles.

Musical revues don't get any more personal than Elegies. Instead of generic odes to the departed, Finn presents twenty-odd songs that are most emphatically about individuals, among them the composer's mother, his favorite teacher, numerous colleagues, and friends lost in the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. The experience may sound wrenching, but while a few numbers do aim for the jugular - and there were audible sniffles heard at Saturday night's performance - Finn's playful lyrics and wonderfully clever rhyme schemes keep the spirit of the show remarkably upbeat. If Elegies is at all funereal, it's in the spirit of a New Orleans funeral; the songs here don't lament death so much as celebrate life.

What makes its area presentation problematic, though, is that its musical celebrations are of people that most audiences, I'm guessing, won't know anything about. This certainly isn't a requirement for the enjoyment of Finn's compositions, and I'm hardly suggesting that the Quad Cities are too provincial for Elegies. But references to the late greats of New York's theatre community - the focus of the majority of songs here - simply can't have the same effect when performed outside of a New York setting.

Riverbend has done a first-rate job of transforming the Village Theatre space into a makeshift Manhattan cabaret, with audiences seated at tables facing the bar area where the singers (and the exceptional pianist Robert Elfline) perform, and the program features a helpful glossary of people and terms referenced. Yet even if you're familiar with such figures as Joseph Papp, Bill Sherwood, and Peggy Hewitt, it's unlikely that you'll have the emotional connection to them that theatre-savvy New Yorkers might, and without an understanding of their place in Finn's world - beyond, as is easily gleaned, his great affection for them - they become nearly interchangeable, and consequently, the songs start sounding vaguely the same. Elegies is a show by a New Yorker, for New Yorkers, and no amount of cosmetics or program notes can fully disguise that. (Even the 9/11 attacks, which affected everyone, affected Manhattanites very differently from the rest of us.)

Although any opportunity to hear William Finn's compositions is a good one, I'd argue that (financial restrictions aside) A New Brain or The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee or even the New York-centric Falsettos might have made for a more appropriate local introduction. Yet if I have reservations about its selection, I have almost none about Elegies' execution; from first moment to last, the show exudes tenderness, enthusiasm, and an abundance of talent.

I'm officially kicking myself for starting my theatre-critic tenure too late to catch Tank's much raved-about performances in Quad City Music Guild's Jekyll & Hyde and The Scarlet Pimpernel; the man has a gorgeous, soaring tenor and takes on Finn's lyrically complex workouts (especially during his "Joe Papp" scats) with thrilling panache and deeply felt emotion. Collins-Elfline - Riverbend's producing artistic director - reveals enormous affinity for her material with her elegant phrasing and passionate delivery, and shows a feisty, funky sense of humor in Finn's "Passover" number. Gimm, despite a tendency to go flat on his solos, is a commanding yet affable presence whose vocals are suffused with richness and warmth.

Nicholson and Madunic, meanwhile, are either given the best numbers in the show, or their performances just make it seem that way. Effortlessly truthful and always note-perfect, Nicholson is as marvelous offering a lightheartedly poignant farewell to his dogs as he is conveying unutterable grief at the loss of his mother. And Madunic, here, is a singer-storyteller of astonishing range and conviction, so immersed in her characters that she could almost be the physical embodiment of Finn's lyrics. The actress has the ability to make you laugh and well up in the same breath, and kudos to the Riverbend Theatre Collective's Elegies: A Song Cycle for granting audiences the opportunity to do both. It would be hard to imagine a livelier hymn to the deceased.

 

For tickets, call (309) 757-1387.

Trackback(0)
Comments (31)Add Comment
0
...
written by Rob Elfline, May 21, 2008
I just wanted to add my two (three?) cents worth:

First off I would like to thank Mike for those kind words about our performance. Like any production, a great deal of time and energy went in to the show and it is very encouraging to hear such thoughtful comments.

I just wanted take a moment to talk about the show (and our perhaps puzzling decision to bring you this show as our first offering). True, much of the action centers around figures prominent in the New York theater scene in the '80s and '90s. However, I would respectfully disagree that the show loses some of its efficacy outside of a New York setting with a New York audience.

The real power of Elegies lies not in the specific people being described (though those descriptions are alternately hilariously and heart-rendingly personal). The power of Elegies lies in transference - our ability to apply the emotions and characters to those of our own experience. For example, before reading through the score, I had no idea who Joe Papp was (though in doing a bit of research, I am now fascinated by him), but I still related to his song in a very real way. Why? Because even if we don't know Joe Papp, we all know *a* Joe Papp. For me, the song could easily be about my college choir director, David Nott, who shares all of the traits of Joe Papp (including a four-letter last name ending in a double consonant!). He was also, "like a giant - biblical and defiant," and I revel in his memory every time I play that song.

So while one might feel the songs sound vaguely similar, at the same time, if a personal transference is made, the songs can sound as dissimilar as my college choir director, my grandmother, and my wife (three nearly impossibly contrasting personalities).

Perhaps we erred in including a note in the program as to who these people really were (a move taken out of sheer curiosity more than anything else). Perhaps no background reference at all would have strengthened the emotional connection I described above. As a company, we are certainly still learning...

That said, I couldn't be more pleased with the kind reactions to our little show and the care with which everyone who has seen it has taken in considering it.

Thanks!

-Rob
0
...
written by Webster, May 21, 2008
Word.
0
...
written by Theatre Fan, May 21, 2008
In the interest of connecting the dots to the previous article, where it was made clear the show had no particular director, perhaps had there been someone guiding the story and theme of the play, its universal appeal would have been achieved?
Jackie Madunic
...
written by Jackie Madunic, May 21, 2008
Hello there, Theatre Fan!

Welcome back! I had a feeling you might return to comment on this article. First of all, I wholeheartedly agree with Rob Elfline(and disagree with Mike, although I DO love Mike dearly)that it matters not whether you actually are from New York and knowthe folks we are singing about or not to completely connect to the stories,feelings,experiences and memories these songs convey. And each of us in the cast, who were given a "character" to either sing about or to actually "become" were given the artistic freedom to interpret our songs as we felt they should be performed with much feedback and creative collaberation by all. In this case, the need for a specified "director to guide the story and theme of the play" was not necessary. From the feedback we have received thus far,Elegies is a very moving,intimate, thought- provoking,heart-warming and well-performed production that I for one am quite proud to be a part of and I do hope you come out to see and judge for yourself this Thursday, Friday or Saturday night at 8:00 at The Village Theatre in East Davenport. ;)
0
...
written by Theatre Fan, May 21, 2008
Jackie,

I do hope to see the show this weekend. I'm sure that you and the rest of the cast feel very close to the production and from Mike's review it seems you have a lot to be proud of. And I would hope you would feel connected to the material after spending so much time preparing the show. But the audience who comes to see the show doesn't have that luxury. As one audience member, it appears Mike felt that the show was not as universally resonant as it could have been (clearly one man's opinion, not to be taken as fact. We've all disagreed with him plenty of times). The primary job of a director is to get to the heart of what the story is all about. Even the great works of the theatre need a director to bring clarity and focus to the work. Judging from Mike's review, the piece focuses more on the specific subjects on the songs, not the broader theme the represent. That's not saying its not an engaging night in the theatre, but one that is less universal than it could've been.

Just wondering, but do you disagree with all of what Mike wrote, or just the negative stuff?
0
...
written by Tyson Danner, May 21, 2008
Oh Jackie! Not only are you one of the best actor/singers in the area, you're also one of the best marketers! :)

I'm looking forward to seeing Elegies this weekend. I've heard many others feel concerned about the choice of material, but I don't doubt it will be sung well! After all, when "West Side Story" is produced, nobody wonders whether the audience will "get it" because they aren't gang members or are the wrong color. We don't feel sympathy for Leo in "Parade" because we're Jewish or feel alienated in our environment. Theatre's universal appeal is in the nature or being human, isn't it? And isn't that a constant whether you're Tony, Leo, Joe Papp, or a Quad Cities theatre patron?
0
...
written by Cathy W., May 21, 2008
I had the privilege of seeing Elegies this past weekend, and whole-heartedly agree with Ms. Madunic and Mr. Elfine. I can definately understand Mike's point about feeling disconnected to much of the material (however do not agree). But, as Theatre Fan said, it is all in opinion and taste. Some will feel warmed and a connection to the songs, some may not. To be honest, it was one of the best sung shows I've seen in the QC in a long (overdue) time, and I'm not talking about the solo pieces (although they were amazing, too). The exquisite harmonies in the group numbers were just gorgeous (as Mike mentioned) and spot on.

I do not, however, feel that the show needed a director. And why? Because Elegies is not a typical musical, but a song cycle. Detailed in the program was also a description of what a song cycle is, and (I feel) shouldn't be judged upon the fact that it isn't the same type of musical we might see at other venues in town. A few weeks back, Mr. Elfine commented on how Elegies was a piece of chamber music and should be treated as such, and it is evident that the entire piece is just that.

I think us posters such be careful not to reach or polorize, as Mike only briefly mentioned the show didn't have a director, but that it was a collaborative effort of the cast. His only beef with the show was the material, not how it was presented. Even if Riverbend theatre didn't pick the right show (and who in this area hasn't picked the wrong show once in a while), they sure as hell sung the snot out of it. That's good enough for me.
Jackie Madunic
...
written by Jackie Madunic, May 21, 2008
First of all, to Theatre Fan, I didn't see much of anything negative in Mike's review. Actually, it's an awesome review for us and I am grateful to Mike for all his kind words. I just don't agree that an audience has to come from New York and be familiar with the characters we are singing about to really "get it." I am glad you are coming to see the show. I hope you like it. But, if not, I would love to hear your thoughts.
Tyson, Thank you, but...uh..NO...I am not one of the best actor/singers in the area....I can think of many, many people in this area that I would consider to be far better singers and/or actors than me but do I agree with your comments about the universal nature of human experience, especially as it pertains to grief and loss. And Cathy W., I don't know you, but you said so eloquently exactly what I was struggling to write about what makes "Elegies" different from other musicals, so THANK YOU!!! Glad you enjoyed it!!! And, yes, I am a shameless and PROUD plugger of this show!!! And I will continue to encourage you all to come out and see it!!!! ;D But hurry, cause it's gonna be over this Saturday and seating is limited!!!
0
...
written by an actor, May 21, 2008
really? the show doesn't need a director?
every show needs one. let's all be honest about that. i did see the show and while it featured AMAZING vocals, it did lack some serious attention to detail.

and is this village theatre thing going to last? i think riverbend has some excellent potential but i'd love to see them get a space of their own. from what i have heard recently there is some interesting things happening with the "owner" (those of you in the circuit know who that is!).

all the best to riverbend! they are doing some fine work, and here's the continued success this summer.

0
...
written by rob elfline, May 21, 2008
A couple of things...

It might surprise many when I say that I think theatre fan has a point (and a very good one). In deciding to work this way, we were taking a risk and, based on much of the feedback we have heard, the jury is still out on the outcome of that risk. However, one thing to keep in mind is that this is the very first production of a brand new theater company, so of course not every element will be in place yet. We fully admit that it may take some time (and a few experiments here and there) before we find our sea legs (so to speak). But in the meantime, isn't it interesting to watch a company experiment and learn from those experiments?

I would also (again, respectfully) disagree with the previous poster (an actor) who suggests that every show needs a director. The collaborative (director-less, if you will) style of working is taking place right now all across the world. We certainly did not invent it and do not seem to have some sort of missionary zeal in promoting it (as some seem to suggest by their comments). This is merely the way that we chose to present this show and I only mentioned it in an earlier post to clear up any misconception. Both Ally and I have seen dozens of shows where an acting company worked in this way and the results can be truly stunning.

As a final note, love it or hate it, this show seems to have sparked a great deal of debate among the local theater community, the majority of which is healthy and constructive. Perhaps we should all sit down and chat about this thing we are all so passionate about. I can't imagine a better way to spend an evening [meant not at all facetiously for those of you infer a snarky tone from sincere words on a page]. I'll even buy the first round of drinks!

-Rob
0
...
written by Patrickg, May 22, 2008
I’d like to thank Mike for all of his kind comments regarding the show. It has been a tremendous privilege to be part of this wonderful new experiment. Bryan, Dana, Jackie , Robb, Esther and Allison are all hard working and extremely talented. Having not been on the stage for thirty years, I’m so glad that I picked this group to debut with even though I may be a little rusty. I’m reminded of the words from play “Look at the joy on her face as she emotes, maybe she doesn’t hit all the notes, but look at the joy.” As for the no director part, well, with Allison’s strength of personality, and encouragement, there isn’t one of us that wouldn’t have jumped through hoops for her, she didn’t need an official director title, we just followed her lead.
0
...
written by Esther C., May 22, 2008
Yeap! What he said! (I'm the one behind the bar serving drinks ;D)
0
...
written by Tyson Danner, May 25, 2008
I finally made it to Elegies last night, and I have to tell anyone that didn't go that they certainly missed out.

Aside from a few very uncomfortable moments, the singing was outstanding! It was great to finally hear these songs live! (Though I was really looking forward to hearing the songs that aren't on the CD, which were cut in this production. That was a disappointment.) And, while I didn't agree with a lot of the interpretation choices musically, it was SO refreshing to see a production that molded the material they were working with, instead of just being stand-ins for the cast recording.

It was very hard to see the performers because the theatre was so dim. However, there often wasn't much to see. I have to admit that I got very bored with having performers just stand center stage and sing their songs. (With a few exceptions like "Joe Papp".) I'll stand by my original opinion here: I think there were a lot of inconsistencies and missing elements that would have been easily corrected and shaped by a skilled director's hand. I just didn't see anything in the finished product that made me believe the collaborative approach was worth it. With those performers, I expected something that would totally knock me off my feet and leave me begging to see the production again.

That being said: I'm a damn picky person, and it was still a great start for this young company. (And yeah, I realize this whole thing may come off as me trying to "be a reviewer". Just wanting to share my opinion and hoping to see more conversation about QC theatre!)
0
...
written by an iowa city actor, May 25, 2008
Oh thank god we finally have Tyson's opinion. I think I can speak for all of us when I say that we were waiting with baited breath for that one...

BTW, "your original opinion???" Have you posted before on this subject? Which one is yours?
0
...
written by agrafena alexandrovna svetlov, May 26, 2008
i have to say that between the actors who perform then come here to defend their work & acting/directorial choices (can you imagine a NYC actor doing that on the NYTimes Forum?! let your work speak for itself, people! that's what artists do -- put it out there with confidence and stop with the explanations already!) and the additional snarky comments of others, this forum is quite interesting to say the least.

i find tyson's comments rather measured, to be fair. i would assume that since the QC area is rather small he is taking quite a risk in being as objective as possible (based on his own perspective of course) -- while knowing that he could incur the wrath of others who may be involved in this or other productions by any feedback he chooses to offer up.

0
...
written by Tyson Danner, May 26, 2008
Yikes...so hostile!

Iowa City Actor: I had posted on the other article about this show. I expressed my opinion about the show's lack of a director.

I'm not sure why the sarcasm is necessary. I love the conversation that's going on here, and I certainly don't rate my opinion higher than anyone else's. I post on these articles because I think this kind of conversation will make our theatre community stronger.

I like to have conversation about other people's shows, though I'm always hesitant to talk about my own work. Unfortunately, (especially online) there will always be people that choose to write the "snarky" comments instead of offering constructive conversation, and that's their right. Though, it's not surprising that those comments usually aren't backed by a name (also their right - people can be very sensitive about their work, and I certainly understand that).

I include my real name in my posts because I'm proud of my opinion and stand by it. And yes, I do feel that I take a bit of risk in expressing my honest opinions instead of just telling my friends "Oh it was perfect!". I don't feel that it makes my positive comments any less valid if I have disagreements with how the show is produced. I have to believe that my friends and other theatre artists in the Quad Cities can acknowledge my opinion without thinking anything less of me as a person.

I hope we can all continue these open, honest conversations. How can it hurt the theatre community if we're all talking about it? Let's please keep generating conversation!!

0
...
written by Tyson Danner, May 26, 2008
In the interest of full disclosure - if it's necessary - I'll also note that out of the 7 performers in Elegies, two have been good friends for years, three are new friends, one is a casual acquaintance, and only one is a stranger to me. I've had the pleasure of working with more than half of them before, and they are all skilled performers. So, I don't feel that my negative opinions about Elegies are in any way personal (nor do they outweigh the positive opinions). I'm confident that my friends in the show all know that, while I may love the artist, that doesn't mean I'll love their art unconditionally. I certainly wouldn't expect that from my work - I love hearing what people don't like. It gives me a chance to examine my own work!

Okay, all done with the novel now... :)
0
...
written by Cathy W., May 26, 2008
This "conversation" sounds pretty one-sided to me.

Plus I also feel that, when adding your own opinions about theatre companies in town, you walk a fine line. Your honesty could very well jeopardize the harmony of your own. Look at other directors in town, and I think you'll find they tend to keep their mouths locked up tight, and for good reason.
0
...
written by noodle salad, May 27, 2008
I think bacon is a tasty treat!
0
...
written by Tyson Danner, May 27, 2008
Bacon, indeed! :P

Perhaps my decision to share my opinions just comes from my desire for conversation about theatre. If that kind of dialogue isn't wanted, I'll back away I suppose. (Though I wonder if it would be an issue if my post had said "I can't believe how amazing this was! Flawless!" But there I go again, trying to get someone to take the bait! :P)
0
...
written by WhistlingInTheDark, May 27, 2008
I agree with...the Russian? (agrafena alexandrovna svetlov). For the most part, anyway.

I find the justification for artistic decisions on this forum to be a bit desperate.

And Tyson, if you want to have a conversation about theatre, why not have a real conversation and go get coffee with some of these other artists and express your opinions that way? If they accept, then at least you'll know that they're willing to hear what you have to say. And maybe throw in a synonym for conversation in your posts now and then. But then, I'm a picky person too.

I don't know. Maybe I should have attached my name to this so my opinion actually has some merit. Oops, too late...
0
...
written by the pharaoh, May 27, 2008
Cairo is the capital of Egypt.
0
...
written by roget, May 27, 2008
In honor of whistlinginthedark, here are 8 synonyms for the word conversation: chat, colloquy, confabulation, converse, dialogue, discourse, speech, talk

Enjoy!
0
...
written by Theatre Fan, May 27, 2008
It's a shame that on a discussion board, someone can actually be chastised for bringing up valid discussion topics. I feel your pain Tyson! The reason QC theatre had been boring for so long is that no one stood up to say there can be different ways of producing theatre. That's why it's so exciting to see a new generation of producers stepping up to the plate and trying new things. That doesn't mean they deserve a pass at everything they attempt, however. Tyson has every right as a paying audience member to voice his opinion about what he saw. Even if his post was anonymous, it still provided valid points worth discussing. If we don't question and challenge each other to do better work, how will we ever grow as artists?

That being said, I agree with Svetlov that the artists involved in the production would be better served if they were to let their work speak for itself. If you have to explain what you did, it's a sure sign that you didn't execute it well enough the first time.
0
...
written by an iowa city actor, May 27, 2008
An irony - The community is encouraged to engage in discussion, yet the artists involved are encouraged to refrain from discussion. hmmm....

A reality - This is a message board not a living room. So, naturally this will be a discussion of sound bites not anything meaningful. Whitslinginthedark has a real point in suggesting a face-to-face encounter not a digital one.

A plea - Setting all of that aside, can't we all just make our art instead of incessantly talking about it? Do proponents of this conversation (sorry.... um.... colloquy) really think anything is accomplished by all of these words?

"Talking about music is like dancing about architecture." - Frank Zappa
0
...
written by agrafena alexandrovna svetlov, May 27, 2008
iowa city actor --

a disagreement: if you are an actor in a production, your performance in that production is, essentially, your part of the "discussion", or at the very least, posing the question for discussion by others. you offer it based on the acting choices you make with ever word you utter, every back story you create for your character. there is no "refraining" for those who act -- they are the ones who become the provocateurs for follow up discussion, discourse, dialogue, confab, etc. etc. (with thanks to roget for being a ready source of scholarly synonyms)


0
...
written by agrafena alexandrovna svetlov, May 27, 2008
a correction: that should have been "every" word.
mea culpa.
0
...
written by Theatre Fan, May 27, 2008
Iowa City Actor-

If you'd like to find the time and location to create a face to face meeting amongst every theatre artist in the QC, be my guest. The truth is that these conversations have been going on at houses and bars and cast parties for years and they've finally been put out on a public forum. If you don't like it, don't participate.

A question - is it not possible to create one's own art AND discuss others' attempts? Most of the people who comment on this board are regular contributors to the QC theatre scene. We are people who spend plenty of time creating art and love it so much that when we aren't trying to create it, we love discussing it. I for one have enjoyed the sparring sessions that take place on this board and look forward to many more.
0
...
written by Jennifer Kingry, May 27, 2008
Iowa City Actor - I think you do make a good point. I broke down and posted in regard to a show I'd directed a couple of months ago...and I've felt a ton of regret for doing so ever since.

Your comment spurred two thoughts that date back to my film school days. After waiting anxiously for an appearance by some much-admired film director on a late night talk show, a fellow student and I who had watched together were thoroughly let down. Turned out our hero could make great art...but couldn't really discuss it. At least, not on late night tv.

We got to talking about the possibility that maybe we shouldn't expect our artists to also be philosophers/analysts/whatever. Which prompted my friend to mention something he'd read a long time before, while researching a paper about the early days of films. He claimed that, when the first silents emerged, the producers or whatever "powers that be" existed at the time, chose not to list the names of the actors playing the roles. The reason being that they feared too much power would shift to the actors. However, the public clamored to know the names of their favorite performers...who was she? Who was he? And thus, the star cult in films was born.

I don't know for sure if my buddy's claims were completely serious or if there was a little invention going on there. But, from time to time, it has made me wonder...what would it be like if we didn't credit any of the artists? Didn't list actors names, or directors, or technicians. What if the show was just The Show?

Hey...I'm not saying it would necessarily be a good thing! (And I seriously wonder how many people would drop out of the business immediately!) Writers for sure would stand to be screwed if their name wasn't attached to their work. But still...it's an interesting thought, isn't it?

Back to the topic (or one of the recent topics): My personal preference for "discussing" theater is in person. If only for the reason that, as I.C. Actor mentioned, these forums do tend to reduce things to sound bites. Without voice, without intonation, and the chance to immediately clarify our words in the case of misunderstandings, I find online commentary all too often becomes reduced to niggling over minor matters. What looms large to one reader is sometimes a comment tossed off hastily, with no more than a passing thought, by the writer.

And now, I'm reduced to using the dreaded emoticon to indicate my tone -- ;D Gee...I often wonder how Jane Austen got by without filling her novels with smiley faces and frowns!
0
...
written by schqc, May 28, 2008
I agree strongly with those who say that performances must stand or fall on their own. That's what a performance is. The critic is placing another artwork in relation to the performed artwork. Great reviews stand on their own.

A criticism of the critic and critique are further removed from the reality of performance.

The actor/singer often has the illusion of being both an observer and an actor at the same moment. Even if they can pull this feat off, their observation is quite removed from that of a critic.

As a performer, one should work to take ego out of performance. One simply is the part. You are an instrument, a tool. This is impossible, but still the goal. My best performances had nothing to do with what anyone else thought. I knew that I had done a good job. Who cares what anyone else thinks.

That an audience or a critic enjoys it is gravy only if I understand that I have done a great job. What's the point of a dense or easily pleased critic?

As a performer, I prefer to use the critic as a tool. A second set of eyes. To demand that those eyes see what you see is to render the tool impotent and the author/artist mute. What's the difference between PR and art?

A great performance can occur in front of an audience of any size. I have sung beautifully to the air itself.

I have had the greatest joy from one response from one audience member than heaps of reviews or applause.
0
...
written by The Walrus, May 29, 2008
Koo-koo ka-choo!

Write comment
smaller | bigger

busy