Introducing, CHOOSE REVIEWS!
Today we begin a new endeavor: CHOOSE REVIEWS – reviews of the performing arts in Wichita Falls. We promise to bring you educated, honest, and critical reviews of theatrical productions in Wichita Falls and the surrounding area. We would like to thank ChooseWF.com and the Chamber of Commerce for allowing us to post our reviews on their site but we are not affiliated with the Chamber in any way. They are simply providing the outlet for us to distribute our opinions.
The Arts are very important for any community, and in Texoma we are blessed with an abundance of talent on the stages of our local organizations. Midwestern State University, Backdoor Theatre, the Wichita Theatre and the Royal Theatre in Archer City all mount multiple productions a year, and we are here to support those organizations. Let’s start this off by answering a few questions that might come to mind.
Who are you?
Who we are is not nearly as important as what we bring to the table. Currently there are three writers contributing to CHOOSE REVIEWS, and you can call us Larry, Moe and Curly. Or Peter, Paul, and Mary. Or Athos, Porthos, and Aramis. What we bring is a wealth of experience in the theatre world. The three contributing reviewers have 70 years of combined theatrical experience, ranging from acting, directing, costuming, lighting, sound, set design and construction, prop mastery – you name it, we’ve done it. We have been involved at all levels of theatre as well: high school, college, community and professional. This extensive experience gives us a different eye on theatre, being able to look at it critically and identify what “works” and what “doesn’t work.”
Why should we read these reviews?
CHOOSE REVIEWS understands that the performers in the productions are students and volunteers, and we feel they deserve to be reviewed honestly. Our experience and theatrical knowledge enable us to view these performances through a different lens than the occasional theatre-goer. Our goal is to provide informed opinions of these productions to not only those involved, but also to the surrounding community of theatre patrons.
Why are you doing the reviews anonymously?
CHOOSE REVIEWS respects all students and volunteers who take the stage for each production, as well as the technical crews who perform their work unseen. We have been on stage and we have been backstage; we know what it takes to put on a show. We know the hours spent away from family, the sacrifices that are made, and the friends that start to wonder where you have been for six weeks. No one wants to read negative comments about all of the work they have put in. The truth is, however, some shows would have benefited from more refinement before they were put on stage. The director could have blocked things differently, or taken more time working with an actor on their character. The musical director could have tightened up the harmonies, or ensured the lead actor could hit that high note. The set could have been more functional, or maybe less grandiose. The constructive criticism that we will give may be taken personally by some students and volunteers and we understand that, but it is not our goal to upset anyone in the theatre community. We have all personally been called out by directors, in reviews, even by viewers. We believe art is about uncovering truth rather than putting make-up on it. Having a shield of anonymity gives us the greater freedom to say what we feel needs to be said.
We hope these responses answer the basics. We look forward to bringing you our insights on the theatre, and hopefully convince you to get out and support your local arts organization. Look for our premier review of Escanaba in da Moonlight, opening at Backdoor Theatre on August 12th.
If you’d like to give us feedback, feel free to email us at choosereviewsWF@gmail.com