With Good Intentions

Gawker passes along the really painfully delightful story of what happens when a well-meaning non-professional (octagenarian, in this case), decides to help out a struggling work of art:

The restored version is apparently the work of an octogenarian neighbor of the church, who, noticing the damage to the painting, took it upon herself to restore the painting “with good intentions” but “without asking permission,” as culture councillor Juan Maria de Ojeda put it. It became clear to the amateur restorer — quickly, one imagines — that “she had gotten out of hand,” and she confessed to local authorities.

There are so many theatre-audience-talkback-workshop connections to draw here I don’t even know where to start. The easiest takeaway, obviously, is that audiences don’t always know how to fix your piece, and their ability to do so will be largely determined by 1) how much experience they have with a particular form and 2) how many of them are adding their insights. If the aspiring artist in the story had been a professional restorer, then her taking the job on in her spare time might’ve had much better results, and just been a kind act of charity. Likewise, if she had had even one accomplice, to stand over her shoulder and say “Hey you should probably use a different brush because that one is making Jesus look like a doll-eyed wookie,” well, maybe it wouldn’t have looked like that.

It’s the same with audiences and “constructive” feedback: you want to get a lot of it, and you want to get it from people you trust. There’s always the off-chance that some guy off the street will solve your play for you with one sentence of insight, but it’s also just as likely that he’ll say “Needs more clowns,” and then you write your whole restoration drama to make it somehow feature a modern-day clown transported in from the future, and before you know it you’re stuck with…hold on. I just had an awesome idea for a play.

Mondays Abroad: Funny Pictures


It still counts as Monday if it’s 10pm at night, right? Phew! I knew it!

My Sideshow Blerg post today is about…possibly less serious things than the last one. But it’s certainly there, I can tell you that much!

The People’s Tragedy

Second performance of The Farm tonight! Press Opening tomorrow. My goal for the weekend: avoid #395

A Lesson in Leading Tones

There was a band I can’t remember in high school that used to end their concerts by having the guitarist play the first seven notes of a scale, loop the last note so it just kept playing, put the guitar on a stand and just walk off without resolving the scale.

So, yeah. This is kind of like that, only Batman.


Phew. Thank you.

May 21st. Book It. Done.

Or so it would seem…oh boy.

Haubert says the Bible contains coded “proofs” that reveal the timing. For example, he says, from the time of Noah’s flood to May 21, 2011, is exactly 7,000 years. Revelations like this have changed his life.

“I no longer think about 401(k)s and retirement,” he says. “I’m not stressed about losing my job, which a lot of other people are in this economy. I’m just a lot less stressed, and in a way I’m more carefree.”

He’s tried to warn his friends and family. They think he’s crazy. And that saddens him.

“Oh, it’s very hard,” he says. “I worry about friends and family and loved ones. But I guess more recently, I’m just really looking forward to it.”

I’ve always wondered what happens the day after something like this, when there’s a “deadline” for everything changing. What do you talk about over breakfast? Do you even try to leave the house? Do you just figure you sinned too much?

At the very least, there’s probably quite a bit of canned food to get through.