Monday, February 20, 2006

A moment of self-reflection before trend-spotting

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February 20, 2006

Today marks 30,000th visit to this site, which now averages 120 visits per day -- largely, it seems, from within Portland’s theatre community. Excerpts run in Just Out. Profiles continue monthly as will, one hopes, open dialogue. With February light on openings, question: What theatre trends have you observed recently?

One I’ve noticed -- maybe not necessarily anything new -- is public involvement in the process (très Portland), not just the product. Witness: Hand2Mouth’s City of Gold; Sojourn’s The War Project; Quintessence murmurs of Hamlet-related collaborations; lots of work-in-progress readings from Stark Raving to Portland Theatre Works; and many others.

1 comment:

Follow Spot said...

Two other observations:

Looking over the shows I've seen so far this season, I can't help but feel that this season is one with more cynicism -- and less celebration -- than usual.

Also, multiple productions of the same title, such as various incarnations of Laramie Project, Urinetown and Bad Dates, among others. The first two are being repeated in educational venues, but I'm curious why PCS chose to try its hand at Bad Dates when Triangle did the same show just last year? The easy answer would be that the audiences are mutually exclusive, which is an interesting trend that's been mentioned elsewhere before about theatre in Portland: what we would typically consider theatre audiences patronize the big houses exclusively, while the theatre community itself -- or, for some theatres, a very segmented market niche -- supports the smaller companies. Watch for more on this topic of connecting big theatres with little theatres coming up in the next Followspot profile, scheduled to be released in mid-March.