Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Hester and Satan

Hey Ya'll. Missed ya so much I've popped in with some news and some thoughts.

First the thoughts:
Dave, Love the idea of switching casts of "Mattress" and "Satan"!
You and I should get together on this since I saw "Satan" and you saw "Mattress". Surprisingly the shows may have more in common than one might immediately think. Domineering "women", effeminate men, good vs. evil issues and discussions about sex. OR there could just be a mash of the two shows together!!! I would definitely pay to see that! It could be called "Once Upon a Satan" or "Say You Love Mattresses".

Chris Hester is pulling off the showcase/marketing coup of the year on Thursday April 24th at the Henrico Theater. His one man Musical Showcase is titled "Stages: The Defining Phases of One Man's Life". Free. 8:00pm. Reception Immediately Following and you are all invited - for real.

Hope to see many of you Friday night at "Little Dog Laughed" opening and reception. I am not reviewing as it is Dave's turn but have been graciously included on the guest list.

Now here's something to chew on:
I hesitated (to the point of missing the event) purchasing tickets to the Fairy Tale Ball because I feel odd supporting one theatre company's fundraising event and not supporting them all. It is not that I do not wish to support them all but as a freelance writer/teacher I cannot afford tickets and babysitting for all of the events. It just seems uncool to attend say The Fireball and not go to anyone else's event. I don't want to seem as though I endorse one company over the other. On the flip side, I do support local theatre and want to show my support by "being there" for these fundraising events.

Bloggers- What are your thoughts? Am I being sensitive to others feelings or just exhibiting an overly self important attitude?


Dave T said...

Mary -- glad to have you back! That's a very interesting point to chew on re: the different fundraising events. We didn't have much choice this year -- with Cooper performing at the FTB, one elder Timberline or the other had to be there (or we could have let a 7 year old run around relatively unsupervised for 4 hours -- not a wise choice!) But come next year's FTB, I'm going to have to think twice or maybe even three times...

Anonymous said...

R Shakespeare's fundraiser is its annual "Bard Bash" on 5/3, a little late for the Bard's B-day, but who's counting?

Anonymous said...

Your post raises an obvious issue, but not the one you are referring to. It appears from the paragraph above the paragraph in which you discuss the fund-raising events, you state you are going to see the opening of “A Little Dog Laughed” as a guest of the Barksdale Theatre— Am I to assume you are accepting a free ticket from one of the organizations upon which you are called to offer criticism from time to time? Maybe you are paying for the ticket? I don’t know. But accepting a free gift under those circumstances is a journalistic no-no. I refer you to the Society of Professional Journalists’ Code of Ethics (a voluntary code of ethics – but a good one).
While you may believe such a gift would not compromise your integrity, it is just as bad to give the perception that your integrity is compromised.

As for attending fund-raising events sponsored by organizations for whom you are called upon to offer criticism, I refer you to stories of last year or 2006 when many journalists were called to the carpet for contributing to political campaigns– many of the journalists were not even political columnists– once again it is the appearance of impropriety that is the issue. In your case, you do not solve your dilemma by attending all the fund-raising events– the only way to avoid the appearance of impropriety is not to attend any.


Thespis' Little Helper said...

Even if not reviewing, it benefits your work on the whole!

And regarding fundraising events...the FTB was AMAZING!!! It's well worth it for the event!!!!!

(More on tonight's Ripley/Skinner concert forthcoming...)

Unknown said...

Accepting a ticket from a theatre should not be considered a journalistic "no-no", regardless of a mandatory or volunteer code of ethics. If someone offers you an opportunity NOT to pay 30-something dollars, take it! A sister's gotta eat, right?

blogva said...

I think the "code of ethics" Charles referred to does not count for social invitations otherwise journalists would be SOL on a bunch of good stories. I write about theatre and am a theatre critic. If a playwright is coming to town it is news or at least part of my job to be there for the action. War correspondants don't pay for their flights, hotel rooms, or food when covering wars and I bet they probably get some perks like body armor, food or some type of protection from the military. Is that a bribe? Does accepting food, cloting or shelter from the army make a journalist biased? I don't know but they probably would not be able to get the real story on anything if they didn't get those things.

FYI: When I go to review a play for STYLE the ticket is paid for by whatever arrangement STYLE has with the theatre. Money does not come out of my pocket. When there is an important theatrical event in town and I am invited as a guest to attend- I generally go. It keeps me in touch with what is going on which is part of my job. When a theatre company or an actor offers me a gift of a trip, dinner, chocolate, or cash I do not accept because that might be construed as a bribe. Of course that has never happened so it really is not an issue.
for the record,

kevin said...

Actually, I believe war correspondents (especially photojournalists) often pay their own way.