Ben’s Odyssey #2: Another Awesome Rant

This is my second week of my internship here at The Odyssey Theatre so it is only appropriate to follow up on my rant from last week. Here I am taking a photograph of myself (I refuse to use the “S” word) by a poster for The Lonesome West, which was written by my all-time favorite playwright, Martin Mcdonagh.


My time here over the past week has been well spent, interacting with patrons at the box office and hopefully sending out some laughs through by taking over the Facebook and Twitter account. I have also had the opportunity to sit in on a production meeting for our upcoming show, Broadway Bound, as well as the weekly staff meeting that is held. During these meetings I am realizing all of the components that make up a theatre company and all the variables that go into becoming successful. By the way… Really excited for Broadway Bound. Jason Alexander (you probably know him as George Costanza from Seinfeld) is directing the show. He was in the original broadway cast and I can only imagine the insight and authenticity that he will bring to the production.

When I first started interacting with the LA Theatre community on social media sites I thought it would be a bit more ruthless and cutthroat. What I discovered was a blossoming town full of artists that truly seem to be looking out for another. I go and see theatre on a weekly basis. Side note: I decided to treat myself to a double feature on Sunday, seeing Penelope at Rogue Machine Theatre and The Country House at The Geffen. Both were excellent shows and while I am not going to review the two shows I will say that I was struck with an idea, a thought while theatre hopping. We all know that the current state of funding for the Arts in general has been suffering and I am seriously disappointed by the amount of viewers under the age of 30 who attend theatre.

My generation is kept hostage to the alluring lights of movies and television, often shelling out $12-15 dollars for a single ticket. Now, I’m not saying there is anything wrong with the cinema. Quite the opposite. I religiously follow the films of Wes Anderson, Paul Thomas Anderson, Tarantino, Charlie Kaufmann, etc. But I have stopped going to the movie theatres completely. I don’t care about 3-D movies, constant quick shots, fancy editing and to be honest I’d rather watch it in the comfort of my home on Netflix via my Playstation. Why waste the money on seeing something that is literally…permanently captured on film when I could go and watch a once-in-a-lifetime performance at a local theatre. Now of course, this is solely my opinion and I’m not expecting everyone or even anyone to agree with me.

To wrap up this entry, I propose that we try to reveal theatre to younger audiences and educate them on the importance of being able to sit in a room for over an hour without dragging their fingers across the glass of their smartphone. I feel as though the art of conversation is dying. Maybe, just maybe, with the right amount of push, we can flip around this whole industry in order to grow and expand the minds of those around us. Just a thought. Feel free to disagree. Talk about it. Because ultimately, art gets people talking, whether it is good or bad. And we need more of that. Until next week.