Saturday, July 03, 2010

Full Disclosure Redux

Full Disclosure Redux

It's been over three years since I posted my own full disclosure in response to a story called "20 Dirty Secrets About NY Theater."

But since three years is a lifetime in the blogosphere, and since many (or perhaps most) of you dear readers are new to Steve On Broadway (SOB), I want you to know who's behind the mask. I want to provide you, my dear readers, with full disclosure about who I am.

I am not -- nor have I ever been -- an actor, a playwright, a director, a producer, a composer, a musician, a designer, a stagehand or any of the myriad behind-the-scenes activities that come to mind with the stage. Not even an usher, coat check or any of the other functions associated with a theatre. I'm not even a teacher. Yet I greatly admire those who have chosen those vocations because they help make theatre as vital as it is.

You should know that I do not have my sights set on being anything more than what I am right now: I am purely an audience member.

Over three years ago, I made the conscious decision to accept no free tickets. To truly write from the audience perspective, I pay for every single performance I see. You may ask "Why?"

Well, it all comes down to this. I love live theatre as my favored art form. The civic-minded side of me believes in the necessity of supporting the performing arts, thus I donate to a variety of not-for-profit theatres stretching from New York City through Chicago to my home base in Minneapolis (yes! Minneapolis!), and I'm more than happy to share my candid feedback with all of them when asked.

But the reason why I love supporting the arts is what I receive in return. It's the rush of seeing writers' words come roaring to life by a breathtaking array of actors. It gives me the same kind of high that chocolate offers others. There is no other entertainment option that has the capability of sweeping me off my feet -- I have been known to leave the theatre feeling as though I was walking on air.

While I now regularly see virtually every show that opens on Broadway during any given season, I also select others that genuinely pique my interest. Whether on Broadway or Off, or very far from it, I go hoping I'll enjoy each performances or at least find something within it to admire. I never go because I want to disparage a production. After all, why would I want to spend my hard-earned dollars on drek?

Now that I'm well into my fifth year of writing Steve On Broadway, I also attend shows and share my experiences because I'm hoping that I can inspire non-theatregoers to check out this wonderfully enduring, vital art form. Thus, I write this blog as my own personal diary of what I like about theatre (and what I sometimes don't) in my own unvarnished fashion.

As alluded to in my "About Me" section, my vocation is public relations. But you should know that I handle PR in the travel business for one company with which I'm extremely proud to be associated. Only thing is, I don't find it appropriate for me to use this vehicle to promote that company (after all, this is not a travel blog). I've completely refrained from mentioning the company during my four plus years of writing Steve On Broadway and pledge to never write about it in this space.

I'm passionate about theatre. I appreciate the trust that many of you have placed in me to give it to you straight and honest.

As I stated shortly after I started writing Steve On Broadway, three posts into Steve On Broadway:
Starting a new blog -- my very first -- is more than a little daunting. But I'm relying on old friends, and complete strangers, to keep me honest in my assessments. I'm looking for real dialogue with those of you who enjoy the entire theatrical experience as much as I do. So regardless of what you think of this site, I invite you to post your comments.

While I'm known to be a bit of an SOB (thus Steve On Broadway), this site has a few simple ground rules. First, we don't need to be vulgar to make our points. Instead, we'll engage in polite discourse on a topic -- theatre -- on which we're unmistakably passionate. We may not like a particular actor, actress, playwright, composer or director, but we'll not take the low road with our comments. Instead, we'll engage in true critical analysis that aims to be thought-provoking and stimulating.

So go ahead, post your comments and let the critical analysis begin!
I can only hope I've achieved what I set out to do. Thank you for your trust, and thank you for reading.

This is Steve On Broadway (SOB).

In keeping with the new Federal Trade Commission (FTC) regulations that unfairly discriminate against bloggers, who are now required by law to disclose when they have received anything of value they might write about, please note that I have received nothing of value in exchange for this post.

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