The Playgoer: Hytner: London Critics are Deceased Honkeys

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Monday, May 14, 2007

Hytner: London Critics are Deceased Honkeys

Speaking to The Times, Hytner [Royal National Theatre A.D. Nicholas Hytner] said, "They would be horrified by the accusation, but I'm afraid I'm making it. I think it's fair enough to say that too many of the theatre critics are dead white men. They don't know it's happened to them, but it has."

Hytner pointed out that that some of London's critics were in their jobs when he was still at university and that many reviews by male critics are "misogynistic," especially for shows directed by gay women....

Michael Billington, who has been The Guardian's critic since 1971, hit back at Hytner's comments, calling them "ballderdash and piffle."

It's on! Playbill is at ringside. (Original Times of London article here.)


June said...

The thing that gets me about the British critics is how many of them went to Oxbridge. There's a perception over here that the UK university system is meritocratic. It is in most ways, but Oxbridge, not so much. Do you have to be smart to go there? Surely. Does it help--a great deal--if you went to a private school and are from a rich family? Indeed it does.

Tom said...

Man, if that critic really did reply by saying "Balderdash and piffle," I hope Hytner issued a press release just saying "I rest my case."

Sometimes they write themselves, don't they?