Know your reviewer & Shameless plug

by David (no login)

Thought I'd share some personal insight on reviews and Annie. After opening in Seattle to some pretty good reviews we made our trip to San Fransisco. We had what all of us thought was a very good opening night even though the theater was half full. The reviews that came out afterward tore the show apart. Every one! Two weeks after, we opened in LA. We were the hottest ticket in town! Great press, stars coming back stage each night, great parties. Yes this was the same show, just a different crowd.

Some time later, John took some time off while we played East Lansing. I got to play Warbucks for the entire week. I was looking forward to now only playing the role, but hopefully getting some good reviews for my scrapbook and web site. Well East Lansing only had one paper and one reviewer. In his review he didn't even mention me, he mentioned John. He said something like 'while the understudies for John Schuck and Mackenzie Phillips (who had left the show 2 weeks earlier) did an admiral job, blah, blah blah, star power'. I was ticked. That afternoon before the show I went to a restaurant next to the hotel for a pre-show meal. The bartender asked "weren't you in the Annie I just saw?". I said "yes, did you enjoy the show?" He said "I did. I wrote the a review, did you see it?" The Bartender handed me the paper with the fore mentioned review. I smiled and told him I hadn't read it and proceeded to read it once more. Shortly thereafter he brought me my soup. I said "thank you" and began eating. I left the restaurant with his 15% tip and didn't mention his review to him. After all, he didn't mention me. The point is, I put to much stock into what a reviewer might think of my performance. A reviewer may hate the show, be attached to an actor he saw once and no one could measure up, seen countless productions (always a problem with Annie), just broke up with his/her partner, or is a hopeful bartender taking a journalism class. A couple of bad reviews is not the end of the world. I've seen great actors get them and bad actors get great ones.
BTW, please go to and order the vocal warm-up CD. Yes, I know it's a shameless plug but I've seen some wonderful results with young singers using it. If you enter the discount code ANNIEORPHANS you get a $2.00 discount.
Thanks, David

Posted on Jan 14, 2009, 5:50 AM
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