27 March 2007

By the Popular Demand of a Single Person

Moxie's requested a report on last night's blogger's panel. Although the idea of liveblogging the blogger's panel dissolved me into a small fit of giggles (free wine, empty stomach) at the start of the panel, I didn't take notes or anything, so bear with me.

Um... it was really fun. At times a bit surreal - the whole meeting-people-from-the-internet thing again, but times about ten, because there were so many there. (Very sad I didn't get to introduce myself to Garrett, especially since I think he thinks I'm a guy, and that I missed Aaron Riccio. George Hunka refers to me as "mysterious" today, and I'm not sure that isn't gender-related, too.) Happily, the audience was more than just bloggers - we wouldn't have filled the house, and there were a good handful of older folks, too, which is great, because I thought they were scared of the internets.

The panel was good and interesting. It skewed towards the more serious side of blogging - journalistic ethics, what we're "trying to do," organization, us vs. the them of reporting, conflicts of interests, self-promotion, the Times - by nature of the panelists, though Isaac got a good couple of mentions in of "Battlestar Galactica." Afterwards we hung around the Theatre Row lounge and chatted about blogging and the state of theatre. The question of 'why New York' has especially stuck with me, probably because it's the hardest to answer. It was maybe as close to drinking coffee in a cafe and deriding surrealism in a French accent as I've ever gotten. Theatre used to make people riot; now, at least, we blog. But then we get together with other bloggers in seedy 9th Ave bars and talk about the state of things and the future of things, and I liked that.

(Also, David Cote looks very much like Skylar Astin. I tried to do a Google image search to back this up, but by page 9 of my "david cote" search, I'd gotten David Duchovny, Isaac Butler, and seventeen copies of the Wicked book, but not the man himself. Looking for Skylar Astin, I got one headshot and seventeen unrelated images I've put up on this blog at various points. But I don't think a picture would show it - it's how their faces move when they talk. So you'll just have to trust me on this, but the resemblance is striking.)

At one point in the panel, some asked if anyone ever sees a play because a blogger praises it. Two things came to mind - Radiohole and Vanilla Special K. (One was a riotous success, the other had a funny aftertaste.) Have you ever seen a show just because a single blogger told you to? I've hoped to have that power (have you really still not seen No Child?!) but I don't know that anyone's really exerted it on me. It's more a kind of accumulation - word of mouth builds up in my head, along with advertising and other kinds of buzz, and eventually tips the balance. Doesn't mean we stop trying. Doesn't mean I stop trying to convince you that I'm right.

All in all it was a lovely evening - got me thinking & talking about theatre, blogging, writing, New York, all with people I wouldn't otherwise know. In fact, I'm rapidly tearing through my list of bloggers-I-want-to-meet. And now I'm going to take a script to Bryant Park and do some reading there.


Moxie said...

Whew, thanks! I suspected it would tend toward the serious implications of blogging (feels a little oxymoronic), solving the riddle of why they didn't invite yours truly :-D

I totally see what you're talking about with David Cote and Skylar Astin. They don't really look alike so much as... emote alike? There is a serious similarity going on though - I know from watching Cote's reviews on NY1's On Stage.

CrimeNotes said...


Jaime said...

And there's today's lesson on fishing for comments.

Aaron Riccio said...

One of the things I couldn't quite get over in the live meeting was how to approach people and introduce myself (especially since most of them weren't bloggers -- sample conversation:

ME: "Hey, have I read you?"
THEM: "Read what?"
ME: "Oh."
THEM: "Should I know you?"
ME: "Um... sure?".

I'm pretty sure I was standing behind or next to you in the lobby for most of the night, as I overheard both the "I think he thinks I'm a guy" line and your comment about Radiohole, and that's meeting-by-memory. Next time, I really will wear a name tag.

Patrick Lee said...

Jaime - you're still on my Bloggers I Want (But Have Yet) To Meet list.