The Play’s the Thing

You are to be praised for the cover story “To Play or Not to Play” [April 6–12], excellently written by Steven Morris and Steven Mikulan. It is a straightforward yet entertaining report on the current reality of L.A. theater and the hardships endured to keep it going. Hopefully it will be absorbed by people outside of the circle of supporters who continue to make theater viable in this town.Lee MelvillePublisher/Editor, L.A. StageRemembering Bob Clark

I awoke unusually early a few days ago, turned on the radio and heard of a fatal car crash tying up PCH. My first thought was that the victims might very well be members of the film community. Hours later, I was taken aback to discover that one of my favorite directors, Bob Clark, and his son had perished. So I got a bit emotional when Clark subsequently appeared in the “summit” conducted by Quentin Tarantino in the next day’s L.A. Weekly [“Grindhouse Gang,” April 6–12]. I just wanted to express my gratitude to Tarantino and L.A. Weekly for appreciating Clark and his contributions.Elza MinorLos Angeles

I am not writing to criticize Scott Foundas’ article about Bob Clark. But there was more to Bob Clark than being a director; he was also a visionary human being.

I met Bob in 1999, when I first moved here and looked at the movie business — what seemed like a scary and cutthroat world.

Bob was a friend of a friend’s father. He was amazing on so many levels. I was fresh off the boat from the East Coast with not much formal education. I had a punky spiked red haircut, and I was covered with tattoos and facial piercings. I was full of the attitude that “Hollywood is for phonies.” This funny, loving man gave me shelter in the form of a comfy couch, dinner and advice on being who you want to be. If it weren’t for Bob Clark and his family’s welcome, I would have never followed my dreams and heart in the creative madness that is film.

Bob knew more about movies than just making film. Bob made people. His enthusiasm I will carry with me until the day I die. I shall hand the torch over when the time is right and guide whoever needs guiding. As we all know, it’s the journey of self-expression that is the greatest part of life — not the limo ride to that movie premiere.Carmelo ValoneWriter, dreamer and carrier of the flameCredit Where It Wasn’t Due

While I appreciate Neal Weaver’s very kind words about me in his review of Lovers and Lullabies at Celebration Theater [New Theater Reviews, March 30–April 5], I’d be remiss if I didn’t clarify that, while I collaborated with Stephen Flaherty on a number of songs, I did not, alas, write either Ragtime or Seussical (or any of the other musicals he’s written with his longtime lyricist, Lynn Ahrens).

Which is why I’m still a renter.Richard TannerSilver LakeUnlove Letters

I read L.A. Weekly because it’s free: Tom Tomorrow’s “This Modern World,” political events and movie schedules. However, because I can’t mind my own business, on occasion I scan other items. I have held back from sending a letter, but now the time has come to release pent-up anger. Marc Cooper appears to have a vendetta against Democrats/liberals. I haven’t read one article that isn’t critical. Why not title his piece “This Is My Latest Gripe Against Left-wing Politics”?

Libby Molyneaux announces an anti-war demonstration but adds, “not that it will make any difference.” How’s that for supporting your fellow Americans’ right to demonstrate? Sounds to me like it’s an excuse to not get off her rear end.

Last year, the Weekly could not have been nastier toward Michael Moore (via Ella Taylor). This year it’s Al Gore. As far as Judith Lewis is concerned, Gore couldn’t do any­thing right. Here is someone who brought global warming to the fore­front, but all she could do is con­demn him for not persuading the EPA eight years ago to do something. I guess condemning Gore is her way of helping resolve the issue.Joan ZoricLos Angeles

Whoever the dick is who destroyed the L.A. Weekly, can you please go play on the 405?Luke GrannisPasadenaBon Appétit!

Congratulations to Jonathan Gold on his Pulitzer Prize win. His columns have been a clipped and stored staple of my life. (He writes about food as LIFE!) As a lifelong Angeleno, I swear by him over effete East Coast types not blessed with our fresh ingredients and real international cultures! Viva Jonathan, and pass me the pupusas, spam misubi and empanadas!Sergio R. MandiolaWest Hollywood

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