Sunday, November 04, 2007

Mixed Emotions.

Final show today. On the one hand, our biggest crowd yet, with about 25 people. On the other hand, probably our least responsive crowd. Didn't feel the magic I talked about last night at all, I am sad to say.

But of course I gave it my all anyway.

Very small stumble moment for Philip Glass that lasted about a nano-second. Other than that, perfect. Of all the things about being part of this company's first ever show, i think I am most proud of how far we came on that piece, from two weeks before opening, until tonight.

Indeed, with most of the plays, the director noted as we were striking that, as usual, the show had started to peak, to really hit its stride, just as we were ending the run. Sad, but true. However all may not be lost, as he advised all of us to keep our lines pretty fresh in our heads, as there is more than one offer to have us potentially take the show to other venues. Possibly for a fee. We do not know yet, but we should in the next few weeks. That would be exciting.

As for me, I was listening to someone at the end of the show mention to our producers that it is next to impossible to get a new theatre company started, for several reasons outside of money. Firstly, he claimed that in the age of CGI movies, few people want to see something done live on stage, with little to no effects, when they could lay down ten bucks, and watch a movie where everything blows up perfectly before their very eyes thanks to computers.

I think this is a silly assumption. Live theatre and movies are clearly different creatures, and whatever problems community theatres have, i think very little of them can be blamed, directly or indirectly on the advent of CGI. If anything the opposite is movies rely more and more on simply "blowing things up", without bothering to write a script, or have anyone say or do anything in the movie, people thirst more for engagement in a plot, and with its characters. Films do that sometimes, but good live theatre can take up the slack. Even community theatre, as professional theatre is starting to be guilty of the same sort of spectacle over substance crime that plagues Hollywood these days.

Secondly this man says that there are too many community theatres in the area, and that the community, though active, has spread its talent/audience pool too thin...those who would come see one company are too busy performing in another company, etc. I also disagree with this, as many places nearby have more than one community theatre within their boundaries, and all do quite well. The reason is because they have stayed around, believed in their mission of open, fair minded community theatre, and not let other people determine their course. The same can be said for this one, I feel.

Yes, if the new company, or any new company can forms a niche,wherein the perform unusual or attention getting shows, success will come faster, perhaps. However, there is danger in relying in a niche alone, as one paints oneself into a corner, and must forever then follow that particular path/genre. I feel that quality is the number one indicator of success for a theatre company. If a company is consistently dedicated to providing a quality experience, with dedicated actors, people will come for the performances. Fewer at first, but nothing will enhance the reputation of a company more than the quality of work it does. The company I have worked for the last few weeks provided a high quality show, where everyone from top down was equally committed. If it stays like that, (and there is no reason to believe that it will not), time will be the only barrier between the Full Circle Theatre Company, and a well respected, talent attracting reputation.

I told the company, and will repeat here, that I was proud to be a part of the launch of this group, and look forward to working with them again.


Anonymous said...
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Suzan Abrams said...

You've had a pretty busy year compared to the last one, Ty. Do keep on with your enjoyment of it all. :-)

Suzan Abrams said...

Reading this again, Ty, I'm sorry this show in particular didn't work out the way you wanted but hopefully, it will get taken to other places.
And yes, indeed, live theatre and films are 2 very different things.