Feb 1, 2010

Shirley on Pasadena

A must-read from a veteran of the L.A. theater scene. Key quotes:
Many donors prefer capital campaigns because buildings have more permanence than any particular production or season - but that sense of permanence isn’t what theater is all about.
It’s one of the great paradoxes of L.A. theater that the bigger theaters feel compelled to program smaller shows for financial reasons, despite the fact that those shows are aesthetically more comfortable in smaller venues, while the smaller theaters are free to do cramped versions of bigger shows - because their actors will work almost for nothing. What’s wrong with this picture? Plenty.

Things may turn around again for the old ship of the State Theatre. Having seen many fine (and a fair number of less fine) shows there, and having staged one of Back Stage West's Garland Awards there, I have only the fondest feelings for the old place. To use the title of the best show it ever staged (in my experience), I hope it will get a chance to play on.

Above, Nikki Crawford as Lady Liv at the Pasadena Playhouse

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