Wednesday, February 18, 2009

This made me giggle

Maybe monks have been on to something all these years.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Aside of the day

(Ask Dodgeball, the now-defunct Twitter-esque, what-bar-is-my-friend-at service that was once a hot item but was ultimately used by about 25 drunken bloggers to meet up on the Lower East Side.)
"How Tweet It Is," New York magazine.

See also Daryl's Web 2.0 Death Pool.

Monday, February 09, 2009

A show of shows

One of these days, I'll do something with all the ticket stubs I've been saving in little piles around the apartment. (Why I don't just put them all in one pile, I'm not sure yet.) In the meantime, I was indulging in a little thought experiment the other day, while my mind was wandering during a performance of this Saturday night at Carnegie Hall with the Cleveland Orchestra and Chorus. How many shows -- concerts, plays, dance performances, musicals, revues, etc. -- have I seen in my lifetime? And I mean everything from a Tony-award-winning Broadway production to a free concert in the park. I figured that for the past 10 years, I've seen on average about five things a month -- sometimes more, sometimes less. Add on another 100 performances for the rest of my childhood, and I came up with at least 700. Now, of course, I wouldn't be able to name all of them, although I do have a list of about 100 from this theater club I belong to, but I feel like that number is totally supportable, even as big as it sounds.

Which got me to thinking: If I were ever to become a professional critic of a particular kind of performing art, would I have to largely forgo the variety of other types in favor of my focus area? How many operas, say, does a movie critic end up seeing? Or vice versa? In the meantime, as a happy amateur omnivore, here are three shows I saw recently, enjoyed and would recommend to a friend: Uncle Vanya with Maggie Gyllenhaal, Peter Sarsgaard and Denis O'Hare, In the Heights with Lin-Manuel Miranda (with whom I share a birthday), and Distracted with Cynthia Nixon. And one opera that blazed only briefly at Carnegie: Samuel Barber's Antony and Cleopatra with Lauren Flanigan.