Having seen Nine, Rob Marshall’s retelling of the 1982 Broadway musical, last night I can really only say one thing: What a disappointment. There is no doubt that the film is spectacular, this is a tale of 1950s movie making against a beautiful Italian backdrop, but as far as its big budget Hollywood blockbuster title status goes I am still asking myself, “why?” Why this musical? Why now? Just why?
Nine sucks us into the tumultuous world of Guido Contini, Italian film director just 10 days away from creating his next masterpiece. It is widely acknowledged, by everyone from Contini himself to a Cardinal that he meets on retreat, that his last two films have been flops. His next piece, however will be a masterpiece called “Italia” and will be the epic tale of the country of Italy. Contini however, it is quickly established, is about as flawed a character as has ever been written. The women appearing in his imagination and his reality appear to do a terrific job of ruling both his life and his sub-conscience.
I have quite an admission to make. I have just spent the evening gorging on the first 8 episodes of Fox’s surprising ratings winner, Glee. I first read about the American musical comedy series on Ken Davenport’s blog, Producer’s Perspective, where he highlighted how good for Broadway the series was. Ken felt it was a great way of getting Broadway stars working in a high profile project as well as bringing musical numbers into line with pop songs and onto TV.
It would appear that the launch and marketing behind this musical theatre bonanza could not have been better primed. The pilot episode was premiered straight after an episode of American Idol in May, capturing a ready made audience of tweens, lovers of all things camp and those who appreciate a tight dance routine – the perfect musical theatre audience.
Twitter is only as useful as the people you follow. Here are 100 theatre people to follow on Twitter so that you know what’s going on and keep you up to date. You’ll be surprised the number of people who follow you back, engaging in conversation with you. Remember to retweet and @reply to be active in your online community
Update: Thank you for all of the feedback on who to include in the list. Harnessing the power of other people’s Twitter lists and suggestions you made the list of 100 has now swelled to 129. Enjoy.
Follow them all in one click with Twitter Lists
1. @NationalTheatre The National Theatre on the Southbank, with six or seven productions in repertory at any one time.
2. @OldVicTheatre Led by Artistic Director Kevin Spacy. Original home of the National Theatre company.
3. @NTLive The National Theatre’s initiative to broadcast live theatre to cinemas.
4. @TheRSC The Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) based in Stratford-upon-Avon but perform worldwide.
5. @RoyalOperaHouse Home of The Royal Opera, The Royal Ballet and the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House.
There may be no business like show business but professional performers can certainly borrow techniques from other industries to promote themselves. Just like the real world, new media is all about building lasting relationships. Use the tips below to help turn the web from a way to while your time off to finding your next big gig.
Here are my top tips for how actors and professional perfomers should promote themselves using New Media:
1. Buy your own .com
Actors are increadibly lucky in the way that the industry protects stage names, with uniqueness guaranteed by Spotlight and Equity. Once you have your stage name registered, or even before you sign on the dotted line, check if yourname.com is available. If it is – jump on it! We’ll come back to what you should do with your domain name once you’ve bought it, but the most important thing is to make sure its you that controls it. There is a common misconception that domain names are expensive. They’re not! A .com domain can be bought from sites like GoDaddy.com for as little as £6.35 a year and are an invaluable tool for self promotion. For as long as you continue to pay an annual fee, you have complete control over that domain.