End of an era

NYT theater critic Ben Brantley announced he is leaving his position in October. He was generally regarded as the most influential theater critic in the U.S. Brantley reviewed both The Crucible during its London run and Love, Love, Love and called Richard Armitage “the best John Proctor I have ever seen” in his review of the latter play. I remember when I saw the tweet that Brantley had just seen Love, Love, Love, being nervous for several days until the very positive review appeared.

Without any insider knowledge, my guess: there’s practically nothing to review right now, which means the Times can’t justify Brantley’s salary; the Times has been decreasing its arts coverage over the years already; Brantley’s very traditional positions on theater are out of tune politically anyway and he is said not to have gotten along well with his previous fellow theater critic. I’m thinking: they will hire a woman or a minority person or both, for half what he made, thus simultaneously hitting the buttons of relevance and austerity.

~ by Servetus on September 10, 2020.

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