The Playgoer: Playgoer Lives!

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Sunday, February 03, 2013

Playgoer Lives!

Well that was some "hiatus," wasn't it?  Where were we...

For the few of you that might still be tuning in, welcome back! Sorry for the prolonged, um, "intermission." My excuse is simply lack of time, mainly. I finally completed my PhD in the fall--at the CUNY Graduate Center Theatre Program--and went right into a busy semester of adjunct teaching. (For the academically uninitiated, for "adjunct" think "freelance.") So the good news is, I'm finally--as my mother always wished-- "a doctor"!  The, as of yet, less manifestly good news is that I'm now "on the market" seeking full time academic employment as a professor. So please excuse the blatant plea, but if you're in academia and your department is hiring, and you're a fan of this blog, tell them to hire Dr. Playgoer!

While I'm groveling, I also want to put out there that Playgoer is looking for any other kinds of new "revenue streams." That includes being more available for hire, personally, for writing/reviewing. And if anyone has offers or suggestions of what to do with the blog to "monetize" it more, please share! That includes advertising; for a long time I have sold a small amount of ad space (simple text links), so if you or your company is interested. (You can also still purchase ads via "Blogads" in the upper right margin.)

As before, I can be reached at playgoer_at_gmail, with any tips, offers, or inquiries.

Indeed, the increasing economic challenges of both freelancing and running a blog (not to mention during a Depression!) have taken their toll on me as well. Chloe Veltman testified to this eloquently a few months back. (Her argument, basically: freelance theatre writing has ceased to be a sustainable self-supporting profession, even of the most minimal kind.) And when I look around the Blogosphere as a whole, I see a similar cresting, perhaps, after a wave of volunteer bloggers in the 2000's subsidized the whole discourse. More and more onetime independent blogs are either folding or, with luck, being acquired. (Hey, anyone wanna buy a theatre blog?)

I admit thinking long and hard about whether to resume The Playgoer at all. It's definitely become much harder for me than it used to be to stay online all day and keep up with everything going on in theatre. And I've completely lost touch with whatever remains of what we used to call "the theatresphere"--the coterie of other theatre bloggers upon whom I once relied to generate the kind of conversations that fueled this whole endeavor. But is there even a theatre blogosphere any more? I'm heartened to see many of the old-timers are still posting. But I haven't even begun to be able to catch up with what they're doing lately.

My sense is that, with the new mobile technologies, a lot of theatre-blogging-type activity has migrated to Twitter and other bite-size platforms. Debates that used to go on for days between different blog sites in long posts now transpire over a few hours between several theatre folk at once in 140 characters or less. Does anyone have time any more to actually sit down and read a blog? Can a classic 1200-word blog-rant survive the attention span we give to our handhelds?

Well I've decided to stop worrying about such questions and go ahead and do what I can right here on this little piece of web real estate I have. So, for now, this will become a kind of Playgoer "Weekend Edition"--which will be devoted mostly to reviews.My primary objective right now is just to get back into writing about theatre, and that's the easiest way to start. So if you want to keep following, expect a single post each weekend (possibly Friday, possibly Sunday) discussing one or more current or recent New York productions. (Or out of town shows, if I've been traveling.)  I also aim to step up my Twittering, to supplement the more long-form writing here with quicker links and comments on theatre news and gossip.

Playgoer Weekend Edition begins this weekend with my shortly forthcoming writeup of the current Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. [Now posted, see below.] Which, as anyone who's seen it can attest, is just irresistible to write about for so many reasons!

Meanwhile, for now, I'll just say welcome back and I hope you'll find some virtual space for Playgoer in your busier-than-ever online reading habits. (Links to new posts will go out on Twitter and Facebook, in addition to the usual RSS feeds.) The landscape of The Theatresphere has changed and I look forward to you and I discovering--or REdiscovering--it together.


Peter said...

I think it's time to move you off of Blogspot and onto your own domain. We can work on ad strategy and maybe consider a subscription model for some content.

I'd be happy to take the tech side of things over and design a site for you.

Abigail Katz said...

Glad you're back! Don't give up yet- we need INTELLIGENT theater bloggers like Dr. Playgoer!

George Hunka said...

Welcome back, Dr. Playgoer. We've tried to keep a warm corner for you.

N FRISCH said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
N FRISCH said...

Sooooo glad you're back, Doctor G!
Been missing the sight of your voice.