Two re-posts (ripostes?) to share from the wider theatre-writing community that nonetheless gave me local pause.
The first comes from the Guardian theatre critic Lyn Gardner, whose wonderful contributions to that paper's Stage blog usually keep me up-to-date with what's on the boards in the UK. Today, however, she was talking about a recent incident at our very own Vancouver East Cultural Centre, when the actress Miriam Margolyes, in town with her one-woman ode to Dickens' Women, apparently berated an audience member in the front row for refusing to join with her fellow patrons in giving the performance a standing ovation. Am I ever glad we decided to give a pass on that one. And now I have one more reason not to capitulate and start watching the Harry Potter movies. I just wonder why the incident hasn't received more play in the local press.
Then, in the Globe and Mail, it was J. Kelly Nestruck's turn to offer his annual Canadian theatre round-up, which basically turned into a catalogue of all the sins committed by different organizations' Boards of Directors over the past year. Included alongside indictments of the Factory Theatre Board (for canning Ken Gass) and the Tarragon Board (for apparently censoring longtime playwright-in-residence Michael Healey for his satirical play about Stephen Harper) was a sharp (and, I have to say, deserved) rebuke of the Vancouver Playhouse Board for closing up shop after 49 years at an eleventh-hour, in camera meeting, leaving the community without the time or resources to mount a rescue plan in response. Not that any of this should find me looking over my shoulder as President of the PuSh Festival Board. I serve with 17 other incredibly talented and professional and supportive directors, all of whom have absolute faith in the vision and talents and fiscal responsibility of our ED and the entire staff. This year's Festival is our biggest yet. And my only worry as Board President right now is how I'm going to see everything.
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