Tuesday, April 24, 2007

525,600 Minutes: Dotting The Eyes For One Year

525,600 Minutes: Dotting The Eyes For One Year

Hard as it is for me to believe, today marks my first anniversary of writing Steve On Broadway (SOB). To observe the occasion, I want to offer my gratitude, along with a few details on what inspired me to begin posting in the first place.

First, let me express my humblest appreciation to each of you who has made this site a regular read, as well as to everyone who has included Steve On Broadway on your blogrolls or subscribed to the site.

When I began writing one year ago today, I never fathomed that anyone would ever find Steve On Broadway, let alone care what I had to say. But you've not only found me, you've also shared your deep-felt thoughts, your welcome arguments, your constructive criticisms and your simple corrections.

I've truly enjoyed the dialogue with each and every one of you who has commented directly on my posts. I've also taken enormous pleasure in the surprisingly large number of you who have chosen to e-mail me directly.

It's been rather astonishing to hear from individuals associated with works I've reviewed, including playwrights, directors, actors, actor's mothers, actor's spouses and partners, each eager to provide additional insight, admonish me or simply to tell me that I "got it." Regardless of why you've contacted me, I've appreciated hearing from you.

But what's been most rewarding are the friendships I've developed with individuals I've never even met, literally all over the world. There are those among you -- and you know who you are -- on whom I can count for daily banter and feedback on each posting. I realize that without Steve On Broadway, I would never have had the honor of getting to know you. Suddenly, this little site that I didn't know anyone would read became less about me and more about the sense of community that it has inspired and created. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

After attaching a Statcounter on my site in February, I've been dumbstruck by the number of visitors I receive. While I realize that other sites likely receive thousands of hits a day, I'm flabbergasted to know that Steve On Broadway has been found by over 10,000 readers since my Statcounter went live. Even more astounding is that a significant number of you reside outside the United States, with large percentages living in the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, Germany, Japan and France. Suddenly, that community of theatre lovers seems rather immense and overwhelming.

When I began Steve On Broadway, it was not because I had any personal agenda or ax to grind, but rather to maintain my own journal for one of my many personal interests: live theatre.

Because my day job is devoted to public relations within the travel industry, I have been advising individuals associated with my company on all types of media worth investing time and effort in pursuing. Naturally, today's media prominently includes the great blogosphere. But in order for me to be able to speak authoritatively to those individuals about what this new medium entails -- and since I come from the school of thought that you lead by example -- I decided in April 2006 that I better understand the ins and outs of how to initiate, develop and grow a blog of my own.

Rather than go with the obvious route of blogging about travel, I decided that I would write a blog about a topic I loved, but that I now realize I had only limited knowledge about when I started (and to all you erudite theatre bloggers, my hat's off to you for collectively serving as my faculty and advisors -- I've learned so much from you!).

Steve On Broadway became a labor of love. And although I never write about travel per se, the experience has empowered me professionally to the point where I am now regularly leading seminar sessions on "Blogging 101."

So where do I go from here? Well, because this is now a community, I'd like to hear from you as to what you like about Steve On Broadway and why you visit. In addition to the new poll that asks you which features you enjoy (you can choose as many answers as you want), I invite your candid feedback, either through direct comments to this posting or via e-mail at steve.on.broadway@hotmail.com. And if you've already added me to your blogroll, I'd love to reciprocate -- just let me know you've added a link to Steve On Broadway and I'll add yours to this site.

Again, thank you for reading. And here's to another year of discussing our shared passion for the incredibly enduring artform known as live theatre.

This is Steve On Broadway (SOB).

Related Stories:
Full Disclosure (April 5, 2007)
Critics: Sharpen Your Pencils! (April 25, 2006)

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4 Comments:

At 24 April, 2007, Anonymous Esther said...

Steve:

Congratulations on your first anniversary!

Your advice and friendship made my first trip to Broadway an unforgettable experience. It's been two weeks, and I don't think the glow has worn off yet!

I appreciate what you said about creating a sense of community, something that's so difficult to do on the Internet, especially in a forum that's unmoderated, that anyone can join. It can be hard to find a place for passionate, yet respectful discussion, where neophytes and veterans can feel at home. You always make everyone feel welcome.

One of the things I've learned, from reading yours and other blogs, and from my trip to New York, is that there truly is a theatrical community in the broadest sense of the word.

First, there are so many talented actors most people have never even heard of, people like Debra Monk, Karen Ziemba and Jason Danieley from Curtains, Donna Murphy, Michael Cerveris and David Pittu from LoveMusik.

I saw actors who've been on stage for half a century and one young man, Nick Westrate, a 2006 Juilliard graduate, make his Broadway debut in A Moon for the Misbegotten. It was so exciting to be at the stage door afterward and watch him be congratulated by his friends, his parents, a former teacher. (I also sat next to a current Juilliard student who gave me some great insight into the play and Kevin Spacey's performance).

Secondly, speaking of the stage door, there's such an intimate connection between the performers and fans. I loved Curtains, but what made the experience even more memorable was meeting and getting autographs from just about the entire cast, as well as getting my picture taken with David Hyde Pierce! In addition to being great performers, they are incredibly nice people and I really appreciate the time they took not just to sign autographs, but to talk with people who came to see the show.

And finally, there were numerous times when I was at the theater or waiting in line for something, or waiting for a show to begin and struck up a conversation with someone. Naturally, the talk turned to "What have you seen? How did you like it? What are you going to see next?" There were many people who were doing what I did, going to five or six shows. I don't think I've ever been in a movie theater and had a similar conversation!

While I've always been interested in the theater, until now I've always been a very occasional theatergoer. But I've learned from reading your blog that you don't have to go to Broadway to find great shows. (Although I'm already thinking about a return trip!) I saw the touring production of Wicked that I don't think I'll ever forget. And great theater doesn't have to be expensive. I saw a first-rate theater company put on a wonderful production of Our Town for a ticket price of $15!

Your passion and enthusiasm for the theater comes through in everything you write. And it's very infectious! While you don't shy away from criticism, you always do it in a very respectful manner.

So here's wishing Steve on Broadway a very long and successful run!

 
At 25 April, 2007, Blogger Erica said...

Congratulations! I really enjoy reading your blog *almost* every day. Thanks also for the frequent comments on my blog! Community is what theater is all about. Funny we started blogging for much the same reasons.

 
At 26 April, 2007, Blogger Michael said...

Happy Blogversary!

 
At 27 April, 2007, Blogger Interval Drinks said...

Congrats on hitting the one year mark. I'm a London Theatre blogger and have been reading and enjoying your site for a while.

 

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