Apr 18, 2013

The Pong of Dissent

My recent post on why I depart from the chorus of hallelujahs for Matilda led the paper of record to ask me to write about my (relatively) lonely position (though I see that Feingold has now joined the dissenters). The Times was less interested in me re-litigating my case against the show than in reflecting on the disorienting experience of feeling alienated from the crowd:
I try not to look too closely at reviews before I see a show, and when I go back and read them after the fact, I find myself alternately reassured and challenged, even at times persuaded to see a show differently in retrospect. But when my feelings are as divergent from the reviews as they were about “Matilda,” browsing through the raves can feel like an out-of-body experience, a near-Orwellian process in which my own memories are being subtly changed or replaced, my misgivings unseated by effusions. With every point I concedeyes, that song was charming, now that I think of itI feel more and more unmoored from myself, and from the experience I could swear I had in that theater that night. Can that be taken away from me? Even if I might wish it so, I would hope not.
Read the whole thing here.

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