By Hillel Aron
By Joseph Tsidulko
By Patrick Range McDonald
By David Futch
By Hillel Aron
By Dennis Romero
By Jill Stewart
By Dennis Romero
And no, I never won one either, damn it.-Tony ForkushLos Angeles
DEAR EDITOR:I would suggest that to take actors and their art seriously on the West Coast involves more than reviewing their work at sub-100-seat theaters in Los Angeles and bestowing awards on them. The editorial coverage that Back Stage West has offered, and that Back Stage West/Drama-Logue continues to offer, does include theater reviews of Equity shows all along the West Coast - but also includes in-depth features on performing careers, from independent film to voice-overs to regional theater; listings and leads for actors seeking employment and representation; advice and warning to neophytes, with frequent scam exposes; coverage of the performers' unions; and authoritative analyses of the art of acting and approaches to its training.
The new Back Stage West/Drama-Logue will never have the mom-and-pop charm of the old Drama-Logue, and that will be duly missed. But if "heart" means caring about actors - what they do in their art, and what kind of information and support they need to achieve it - then I would humbly suggest that ours is in the right place.-Rob Kendt, EditorBack Stage West/Drama-LogueLos Angeles
DEAR EDITOR:When you take a piece of poetry like Alicia Madrid's Shame on the Moon, poetry with a universal message, humor and richness of culture, and have it performed by young, vibrant, talented Latino actors, and you offer this to the L.A. theater community, and what you get back is a review from Tom Provenzano that refers to "Charo" and "exaggerated Latino accents," I begin to lose hope that those who profess to be theater critics will have the insight to know the difference between their view of a production and their personal ignorance about the lives, beliefs, views, worlds and passions of persons other than themselves.- Marian JonesFounder and Artistic Director, Ivy TheaterLos Angeles
LESS BEING MORE AND ALL
DEAR EDITOR:Early in her review of Saving Private Ryan [July 24-30], Ella Taylor mentions how the first 24 minutes of the film contain some of its most dramatic moments, which she then proceeds to describe in excessive detail. Ms. Taylor should recall from Movie Critique 101 that an important factor in making a scene "dramatic" is that the audience does not know what is going to happen beforehand!
To be honest, I stopped reading the review right there. Fearing more brilliant revelations, I could not continue. I would suggest to L.A. Weekly that someone review Ms. Taylor's reviews before they go to press.- Todd GrovesSanta Monica
TONGUE IN CONCRETE
DEAR EDITOR:With respect to the historic preservation of the Cinerama Dome, I offer the following suggestion: JUST BLOW IT UP! The major studios would pay a small fortune to film an explosion like that. Plus, we could easily tear down the Chinese Theater, and have a huge sledgehammer party in the forecourt to pulverize all those cheap, old-looking hand- and footprints. The City Council would give its wholehearted support and approval, I'm sure. Hollywood is extremely proud of its culture, and deservedly world famous for having some of the finest parking structures on the planet!- Ted OtisHollywood
DEAR EDITOR:In the article "Brill's Discontent" [July 10-16], Jim Crogan and Steven Brill both get it wrong. It really doesn't matter if an occasional reporter is incompetent or crooked. There are far larger forces corrupting and distorting the media in this country. Chomsky and Herman, in Manufacturing Consent, tell us that media are not simply in service to big business, but are big business. While Crogan and Brill rearrange the deck chairs on the Titanic, working- and middle-class people receive almost no information about larger structural issues having to do with labor, class and the imperial tactics of large Western-controlled financial and capital institutions.
Perhaps the L.A. Weekly should examine its own position as part of an alternative-weekly syndicate (oxymoron!), and as regards its allegiance to good and salient reporting versus the bottom line.-Robert LiptonVenice