Please save the Hollywood Theater! If this theater doesn’t get a digital projector, they will be forced to go dark.
That means no more shadowcasting Rocky, which is one of the highlights of my life. This is also the theater Stephen Chbosky went to to get his Rocky fix and the one featured in the Perks of Being a Wallflower
We need $70,000 for this projector, so please, donate what you can. This theater is the home of many, including myself. It is such a beautiful place and so many memories were made here. I don’t know what I’ll do if they are forced to close.
Please, help out, spread the word, and donate. Every penny is appreciated.
“There is a strange sort of reasoning in Hollywood that musicals are less worthy of Academy consideration than dramas. It’s a form of snobbism, the same sort that perpetuates the idea that drama is more deserving of Awards than comedy.” -Gene Kelly
People tell you, “Oh it’s really hard” and of course it is. But if you have a burning passion to do something, commit to that 100% and work as hard as you possibly can on pursuing that passion. That commitment will either lead you to what you think you want or lead you to something you didn’t even know is out there. By just following that passion, it will lead you to something you’re supposed to do.
A lot of people and a lot of people’s parents tell them, “Well you need a plan B.” I’m not a believer in plan B. I don’t think there can be a plan B. There can only be a plan A and then Plan A will lead you to a different plan, maybe, that you don’t even know about. To be acting out of fear is something that I think a lot of people who want to be artists battle with and I know I did as a young person. I learned that…even if you do exactly what you think you want to do, it never looks like the thing you thought it was going to look like, it looks different. You may achieve your dream in the way you thought of it, it will probably lead you to another dream you probably didn’t know about. That’s the thing I think is most important for young aspiring artists.
There’s a little something to alienate everyone. Older people are widely thought to be allergic to rap, while hip-hop aficionados are likely to assume that, if it’s in a theater, the music has to be ersatz. Youngsters, who can’t afford Broadway unless their affluent parents escort them, aren’t known to gravitate to historical pageants. And white people, still the overwhelming majority of ticket buyers, tend to want to see reflections of their own pigmentation when shelling out hundreds of dollars for a night’s entertainment.
No doubt a fair number of old school producers rolled their eyes when word got out that Miranda, coauthor of the Tony-winning musical “In the Heights,” was working on a show that must have sounded to them like Snoop Dogg redoing “1776.” Fortunately, there were people well placed to support Miranda’s improbable vision. Oskar Eustis, the artistic director of New York’s Public Theater, opened his theater to “Hamilton” as part of a commitment to expanding the demographic reach of the contemporary American musical.
The Public is where “Fun Home,” the coming-of-age musical about a lesbian cartoonist haunted by the apparent suicide of her closeted gay father, also premiered. Lisa Kron and Jeanine Tesori’s show, based on Alison Bechdel’s graphic memoir, had many predicting it would be at best a short-lived succès d'estime. But “Fun Home,” which was perhaps an even bigger long shot than “Hamilton,” not only won the Tony for best musical but recouped its capitalization in the relatively quick span of eight months. It will go down in the annals of Broadway as both a commercial and critical hit.
As a result of an off-Broadway theater’s determination to reflect American multiculturalism in the work it produces, along with the courage of some farsighted Broadway producers, the Great White Way suddenly seems a lot more welcoming if still not as multihued as it could be.
Broadway continues to have serious diversity problems in terms of audiences and artists. Last year’s Tony nominees were nearly as white as this year’s Oscar contenders, yet there was little uproar as one pale Brit after the next took home a statuette with plummy gratitude.
But what “Hamilton” and “Fun Home” spectacularly demonstrate is that making an investment in extremely talented artists from diverse backgrounds is still the best business plan for simultaneously growing prestige and revenue.
Playing the great rock critic Lester Bangs, in Almost Famous, Seymour Hoffman remarks that: “Great art is about guilt and longing.” So often, that was what Seymour Hoffman’s acting was about. “Truth” is a word that’s thrown around a lot in the theatre; it’s a hazy concept that encompasses a lot of things, including not being hammy, or affected or self-conscious. It’s hard to pin down but easier to see when it’s right in front of you. When you watch Philip Seymour Hoffman act, you are watching something true. He once said of his career: “I just thought I’d ride my bike to the theater. That’s what was romantic to me.” It’s a line that sums up the possibility of creation, the optimism of making something artistic happen. To think that he’ll never do that again is almost too sad.