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PostPosted: Fri Dec 09, 2005 12:46 pm 
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Very good Jeff.

In the end if you put value in the good reviews (in terms of artisitic quality) then you have to value the bad ones. And not all negative reviews are out of line.

However, as a marketing manager I prefer the good ones as I need qood quotes on a regular basis for marketing materials. The public AND the Foundatiobb2mhat grant money like them too.


Last edited by DavidH on Fri Dec 09, 2005 1:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 09, 2005 1:15 pm 
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Location: The Bronx is up; the Battery's down
DavidH wrote:
And not all negative reviews are out of line.


Absolutely.

In Up the Organization, Robert Townsend says:

Quote:
Related to this is a function that you might describe as vice-president in charge of anti-bureaucratization. He must have a loud voice, no fear, and a passionate hatred for institutions and their practices. In addition to his regular duties, it's his job to wander around the company looking for new forms, new staff departments, and new reports. Whenever he finds one that smells like institutionalization, he screams "Horse****!" at the top of his lungs. And keeps shouting until the new whatever-it-is is killed.

Billy Graham has a man named Grady Wilson who yells "Horse****"--however you say that in Baptist--at him whenever he takes himself too seriously. Perhaps that's one of the reasons the Graham organization has been so successful. I had a Chairman of the Executive Committee who used to blow a launch-caller at me. Every chief executive should find someone to perform this function and then make sure he can be fired only for being too polite.


(I particularly like the "however you say that in Baptist")

This, of course, is what critics -- good ones, at least -- do for us. They tell us when we're full of horse****, no matter what language or religion they say it in.

Quote:
However, as a marketing manager I prefer the good ones as I need qood quotes on a regular basis for marketing materials. The public AND the Foundations that grant money like them to.


...Which is why I use them on my web site and in my resume'...but I wonder sometimes if potential employers look at them and ask themselves, "What quotes is he leaving out?"

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Jeffrey E. Salzberg,
Dance Lighting Design
http://www.jeffsalzberg.com


Last edited by salzberg on Thu Dec 15, 2005 5:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2005 5:45 pm 
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I knew I had posted this comment from Jose Varona somewhere on here years ago, and I had in this forum

http://www.ballet-dance.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=9430&highlight=venting

And the quote:

Quote:
from Jose Varona, in a book by Lynn Pecktal called Costume Design, Techniques of Modern Masters (I highly recommend this book for anyone in the performing arts!!) When asked what he liked least about about working in the theatre he said (paraphrased here) ....opininated people who were not involved in the creative part but feel the right to express their opinion.......


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2005 5:53 pm 
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I don't agree with Mr. Verona, at least insofar as the fact that the audience is an integral part of the creative process -- the two essential compnents of art are one person performing and one person watching; it's not art until both are present, and they're both invested.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2005 1:00 am 
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Jeff -
A good friend has worked a lot with Mr. Varona and he asked him about that quote. It's more to do with the process of getting "it" (the project) up on its feet then how any one person feels about it when its complete and on the boards. So in those terms I very much agree with him.

Happy Holidays!


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2005 2:19 pm 
"Denial" of what, Azlan?


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2005 2:40 pm 
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Taken to its logical extreme, Mr. Verona's comment seems to mean that audience members have no right to express opinions. I feel exactly the opposite; as an integral part of the process, it's their duty to voice their thoughts.

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 17, 2005 12:41 pm 
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Apparently my attempts at clarifying Mr. Varona's remarks are fruitless.


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 17, 2005 12:46 pm 
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Well, David, if I'm misunderstanding the point, I apologize, but I just can't see any situation in which I'd feel it inappropriate for audience members to voice opinions and suggestions, and that seems to me to be what you're advocating.

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http://www.jeffsalzberg.com


Last edited by salzberg on Sat Dec 17, 2005 5:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 17, 2005 5:15 pm 
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That's not what I'm advocationg in the very least or else my job as a marketing manager would be in great jeopardy.

It's moot at this point Salzberg. Throwing out the white flag and going back to lurking.

Ho ho ho!

D


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 27, 2005 11:59 am 
Dennis Nahat is not Cuban. [Personal attack deleted by moderator. Read the criticaldance Courtesy Policy here] Their Firebird/Phaedra got great reviews, and was fantastic. And not by Lebanese reporters who liked Dennis because he is Lebanese.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 27, 2005 8:27 pm 
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Actually, Nahat is Syrian American, born in Detroit. The point above was made about critics not being what they seem and not necessarily an attack on any particular company (as an aside, in my opinion, BSJSV has done an incredible job of bringing in talented dancers since its rise from the ashes and morale seems to have improved as well from what I hear but I also believe a company's harshest critics has to be its own local audience, so as not to breed complacency).


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 27, 2005 8:45 pm 
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Sorry for being away for a while. Been busy helping... Tis the season...

salzberg wrote:
Well, David, if I'm misunderstanding the point, I apologize, but I just can't see any situation in which I'd feel it inappropriate for audience members to voice opinions and suggestions, and that seems to me to be what you're advocating.


I actually think I understand David's point. Are you talking about creative ownership? While I agree with Salzberg that any work on stage should be open to criticism, it's the people who create the works who have to take ultimate responsibility and sweat the work. After all, it's not the audience whose names are listed in the program notes and it's not the readers' names that are on the cover of a book. Therefore the public shouldn't have an expectation that they can influence the artistic process since they are not the ones taking responsibility for it.

It also depends on the circumstances. A writer who writes a book is responsible to her publisher, as the publisher is the one putting up all the costs. The filmmaker is responsible to the studio that funds the movie. But a music director of a major symphony orchestra who commissions a work by a composer is responsible to the public even if the piece is funded by a private donor, as the orchestra is funded at least partially by public funds. I remember the, um, commotion when SF Opera produced a series of controversial works that looked good on paper but failed to spark interest (I remember Streetcar very well along with the behind the scenes decisions...).

In other words, for a non-profit organization, everyone in the community is your boss, especially if they have vested volunteer time and effort into the company as well. In this case, it's not just the musical director or the composer or the librettist who has creative ownership -- it belongs to every tax payer, right?


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 27, 2005 8:57 pm 
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Anonymous wrote:
"Denial" of what, Azlan?


I guess I was referring to selective reasoning, as in not accepting negative reviews but promoting false positive reviews, by the same reviewer. I remember a then new choreographer in SF who firmly believed that a local writer was biased against her never mind that the work was really mediocre (as I recall, her reasoning was that the writer was too close to the dance community and because she gave positive reviews to her "close" friends on the same program, she had no choice but to make negative comments for the new choreographer, to balance the review...).

And then later when the same writer gave her a positive review, the writer was put forward as being honest and all good things under the rainbow. As far as I can tell the choreographer could not connect that these two reviews were written by the same person even though I put the reviews side by side with the same name in the byline -- she still kept referring to the single critic as the good reviewer in one context and the bad reviewer in another!


Last edited by Azlan on Wed Dec 28, 2005 1:53 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 27, 2005 9:02 pm 
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Azlan wrote:
But a music director of a major symphony orchestra who commissions a work by a composer is responsible to the public even if the piece is funded by a private donor, as the orchestra is funded at least partially by public funds.


This begs the question: are some public opinions more important than others? For example, if the private donor disagrees with a non-donating audience member, who wins? How about 1 private donor against 2 non-donating audience members? 4? 50? 100? Don't we ultimately get into a situation like what's described on the NYCB thread in this forum, where some people feel entitled to influence the company because they're giving a lot of money?

That's another reason why I prefer the sausage factory model --- I don't want to know how it's done as long as what comes out tastes (in the case of sausages) or looks (in the case of ballets) good, and is sustainable. But for this to really happen, we need among other things honest audience feedback along with honest critical feedback of what happens on stage. It'd be interesting if audience members could walk out or boo freely, or if companies offered money-back guarantees on tickets.

--Andre


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