DAVID: The art of theater and the inevitability of change – they’ve gone together from the beginning of, well, of theater. And I’m not talking about the pocket change that most theater artists earn for their work, or the mundane kinds of change – like ‘scenery changes’ and ‘quick changes in the dressing room.
The art form itself has changed over the centuries, from a single bard standing in the square reciting an epic poem, to Greek choruses expounding exposition, to men playing women, to women playing men, to men writing plays in which people drop F-bombs, to women writing plays in which women talk to each other about something other than men.
The audience changes too, mostly by turning gray, but sometimes by turning the tables on the theater establishment and demanding something new.
And, inevitably, those of us who give our opinions on the art of theater, we change too. And that’s good, because new voices and new ideas always serve to keep things interesting and fresh.
Which is a long, theatrical way of saying that after nearly ten years of contributing my thoughts – and my voice – to this weekly ‘Second Row Center’ radio segment, it’s time for me to make a change, and as such, this will be my last time appearing on the radio in this particular format.
Why the change? Main reason – I’ve taken a position as the Community Editor with the Petaluma Argus Courier, and the new gig will be taking up a great deal of my time.
I will continue as the theater reviewer of the North Bay Bohemian, however, so I will stay in the role of North Bay theater critic, in print, if not on KRCB.
Which brings me to Harry Duke, who will be taking over this segment, beginning . . . well, beginning right now.
Ladies and Gentlemen, Mr. Harry Duke.
HARRY: Thank you, David. We’ll now take a short pause while the listeners say “Who?” Well, I am Harry Duke. I’m a twenty-five-year resident of Sonoma County, a graduate of Sonoma State University’s Theatre Arts program, an actor, a director, an educator, one of the founders of the Marquee Theatre Journalists Awards, the Chief Information Officer of the San Francisco Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle and a member of the American Theatre Critics Association. I’ve been performing on North Bay stages since the last century and reviewing theatre as far back as my days on my New Jersey high school newspaper.
I love theatre. Whether onstage or in the audience, theatre has always been the place I have been most content. We are fortunate to have an abundance of it in this area. With so many choices and limited time or resources, how does one go about deciding what to see? That’s where a critic can be of assistance. I’ll share my thoughts and opinions with you about productions in the North Bay and beyond. The foundation of those thoughts will be my education, my experience, and my love of the art of theatre. I’d rather give you a reason to go see something than to not go see something but, like a baseball umpire, I just call ‘em like I see ‘em.
Thanks to my colleague David Templeton and to the folks at KRCB for allowing me to add my voice to the Radio 91 airwaves. So, until next week, I’m Harry Duke…
DAVID: And I WAS David Templeton, Second Row Center . . .
HARRY: … for KRCB.