April is the Cruelest Month...
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April is the Cruelest Month…

2004_12_13thespians.jpgFor theatre in Toronto, anyway. Houses have reportedly been weak for World Stage: Flying Solo, leading the festival to offer reduced-price tickets to TAPA members. The Seven Lives of Simon Labrosse, a Carole Frechette play that Torontoist actually likes (don’t get us started on Helen’s Necklace), has been playing to underwhelming houses (except for the night the Governor General dropped by last week). And the cast of The Confessions of Punch and Judy has been dismayed by the lack of reservations for the rest of the shows run… And these are only the woes that have reached Torontoist’s ears.
So, what to do if you’re a Toronto theatre professional and not getting the crowds you’d like? Why, blame the critics, of course!
Torontoist’s new favourite theatre blog is Review the Reviewer, which is

… a forum for artists and audience to respond to reviews written about theatre in Toronto. Many of Toronto’s critics are often petty, defensive, ignorant and downright stupid, yet they affect box office and the public’s appreciation and understanding of the work. These critics seem to be unaware of the damage they do and are more interested in sounding clever than actually engaging in intelligent dialogue. And some don’t even worry about sounding clever.

This anonymous blogger seems to have a particular hate-on for The Globe and Mail’s Kamal Al-Solaylee, which makes Torontoist suspect he knows who is behind it.
Since Kamal the Animal has been absent from the Globe in recent weeks — reporter Rebecca Caldwell and former critic Kate Taylor have picked up the slack — the month-old blogger asks, “Dare Review the Reviewer take any credit for this turn of events? Probably not, but it’s fun to fantasize.”
Yes, unfortunately for Review the Reviewer, Kamal is simply on holiday… But Torontoist does enjoy fantasizing!