Rogues & Vagabonds

theatre, film & tv past and present 2001-2008 & 2013…

How to Write about Theatre by @MarkfFisher #Bloomsbury

What a very neat idea and not before time, says she who wrote many theatre reviews for her original R&V website without any advice, merely instinct! It was important to me to remark upon those aspects which didn’t work in a decent manner and not one fashioned to make the cheap gibes and headlines of which some are guilty.

It angered and still angers me when the parts of a production that don’t work are wrongly attributed. How often have I seen a critic blame the actors when it’s clear to me and many others that the director is at fault. Or vice versa. This is equally true on the positive side. I was in a couple of productions where the director did not know what he or she was doing and that the play came together at all was because the company pulled together, worked without the director, and saved the show from a savaging. The directors on both these occasions got all the credit. And a director often gets the blame when the actors are less than talented and unable to ‘take direction’ or the play itself is at fault.

In any case, Mark Fisher knows his theatre and I believe How to Write about Theatre is to be welcomed wholeheartedly, especially as I have seen some appallingly written pieces masquerading as theatre reviews, particularly on the internet.

From Amazon:

MARK FISHER has written about theatre in Scotland since the late-1980s, contributing theatre reviews, interviews and arts features to newspapers and magazines in Scotland and all over the world.He is the Scottish theatre critic for the Guardian and Variety, a former editor of The List magazine and a frequent contributor to the Scotsman and Scotland on Sunday and many magazines, newspapers and websites.As a freelance editor, he has worked for the Edinburgh International Festival and several projects for The List magazine.As well as being the co-editor of Made in Scotland, an anthology of plays, he is the author of The Edinburgh Fringe Survival Guide: How to Make Your Show a Success (“A wonderfully practical but also inspirational book full of good advice” – Lyn Gardner, The Guardian) and How to Write About Theatre: A Manual for Critics, Students and Bloggers (July 2015). He also wrote the foreword to the 2015 edition of Knives in Hens by David Harrower.He is a judge for the Theatre Awards UK, the Scotsman Fringe First awards and the Critics’ Awards for Theatre in Scotland, and an advisor for the Carol Tambor Best of Edinburgh Award. He has also been on the panel for the Herald Angels and the Amnesty Fringe awards.He is also responsible for the theatreSCOTLAND website, a wide-ranging database of actors, playwrights, theatre companies and buildings, plus reviews and articles.”Fisher is the perfect host, and what shines through is his experience in theatre and depth of knowledge.”
Three Weeks, 2011 Follow Mark Fisher on Twitter at @markffisher
Follow How to Write About Theatre on Twitter at @writeabouttheat
© Sarah Vernon
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