Monday, August 04, 2008

Kid Glove-ing the Audience?

Ron Cowan reports on the Salem Repertory Theatre in Oregon, which is making some changes to its operations and its aesthetics:

In another change, Salem Repertory will collaborate with Teatro Milagro (Miracle Theatre Group) of Portland to introduce Latino theater to its repertory. It will start next season with staged reading, culminating in a fully staged show in 2011.

Salem Repertory also is testing the waters for other changes with
its staged reading of the "Pulp Fiction"-style Tracy Letts' play, "Killer Joe."

Drug use and nudity (though not in a staged reading) will prove a
test for the Salem audience.

I don't mean this to sound snarky, but Pulp Fiction premiered over 10 years ago and it is available day or night on basic cable stations. Tracy Lett's play Killer Joe premiered in Chicago around the same time, actually I think a few years before Tarantino's film.

What in the heck will be a passing grade for the "test" to which the Salem audiences will be subected.

A commenter on Cowan's article states the following:

Now, didn't we all know this was coming? We, the backward Salem
audience just don't know how to appreciate the more sophisticated theater that drug use and nudity bring. Why go to the theater if the development of ideas and emotions is going to be replaced by visuals that we can get at the bus station (excuse me, "Transit Mall")?

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