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Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by Patti LuPone FANatic 2012-12-27 10:30:30


This is some snarky commentary by Michael Musto. Thoughts? from RC in Austin, Texas



I'm basically bowing and scraping before your fabulous feet and saying "I'm so sorry".

And why am I apologizing? Because I'm old!

I've been around.

I've seen revivals upon revivals upon revivals of the shows you're currently reviving.

In fact, I even saw the originals!

So I'm always writing stuff like, "So-and-so had moments, but she couldn't hold a candle to the role's originator, Dorothy Loudon."

Or, "Miss Movie Star is a natural actress and never false, but excuse me, Cherry Jones was galvanizing in the role 16 years ago, and Miss Movie Star can't make me forget that for a moment."

And it's not fair to people attempting classic roles to have to be compared to those who previously shone in them!

Many years ago!

It's not right that they should have to be held against that imbalanced measuring stick simply because people like me have roamed the earth for decades and have seen (and remember) it all.

To new theatergoers, the current batch are the best ones in the roles--in fact, they're the only ones they've ever seen.

But then again...wait a second, let me think this through....it's probably good to have a sense of history color one's look at new things.

It's hard to evaluate a production without noting the ways it was previously attempted while discerning what's been jazzed up, dumbed down, or maintained.

And besides, if an actor can't sparkle in a part that was magical when someone else did it, they should probably stick to the non classics and just do revivals of the shroud of Turin musical.

Then no one needs to worry about unfair comparisons.

Apology rescinded.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by Jordan Catalano 2012-12-27 10:35:55


Ooooooook.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by Kad 2012-12-27 10:37:32


....they REALLY pay him for this?

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by PalJoey 2012-12-27 11:15:41


Michael Musto has moments, but he can't hold a candle to the Village Voice's original gay columnist, Arthur Bell.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by After Eight 2012-12-27 11:39:33


"Thoughts? "

I wonder if he hasn't read the whining that goes on in certain quarters here when one makes a comparison similar to those he describes.

Why one would wish to efface an entire cultural history boggles the mind, but I guess nowadays one can never underestimate the depth and breadth of self-centered immaturity.

I'm glad he rescinded his apology.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by JoeKv99 2012-12-27 11:56:58


If one remakes a film and it's inferior to the original, that is worth noting. In this day and age, anyone can watch the two 'Miracles on 34th Street' back to back and compare.

If there is a revival of "Kelly" however, there is no point comparing it to the original- it's gone. It really doesn't matter if Sutton Foster can't hold a candle to the vivacious and bewitching Anita Gillete who played the part in the original. The review should focus on how Sutton is in the role.

But of course, it's always fun to hear old men ramble on about how much better things used to be.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by FindingNamo 2012-12-27 12:10:02


That's from Musto's blog, not his column. Arthur Bell would probably never have been able to come up with enough for a blog several times a week. Maybe the occasional jeremiad against The Boys in the Band.

Recently I had the pleasure of rereading a lot of Bell's old columns from the late-'70s and the column was really a different beast than his successor's. It was peppered with items like "this specific named bitchy celebrity told me this specific bitchy thing about this other specific named bitchy celebrity while at a party at this other evil celebrity's uptown penthouse."

I haven't missed many columns since Musto took over, but he came in with a downtown focus and evolved in many different directions and gave focus to a gay world that is really an entirely different beast than it was when he started. I can't imagine the past several decades without his chronicles.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by Jordan Catalano 2012-12-27 12:35:42


"But of course, it's always fun to hear old men ramble on about how much better things used to be."

Was that directed towards Michael Musto or After Eight?

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by JoeKv99 2012-12-27 12:42:16


In the spirit of the holidays, I dedicate it to overly nostalgic old men, everywhere!

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by uncageg 2012-12-27 14:42:35


I find Musto to be annoying. Especially when he is on Theatre Talk.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by GavestonPS 2012-12-27 19:26:55


I was present at a graduate seminar once when David Schweitzer (an LA-based director who also works in NYC) said that the sole aim of professional criticism in New York was "to protect an idealized past from all new influences."

Having just moved from New York at the time, those words rang true to me. Musto's column merely proves that some things never change.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by After Eight 2012-12-27 19:54:16


"If there is a revival of "Kelly" however, there is no point comparing it to the original- it's gone."

If only you took the trouble to think before shooting off your mouth--- that is, if you are capable of thought, of the rational kind, anyway. Yes, there is indeed a point, to show how a role could be, or was, interpreted in different ways. That might be enlightening--- for someone who cares to be enlightened, that is.

"But of course, it's always fun to hear old men ramble on about how much better things used to be."

Actually, it seems to be anything but fun to you and your ilk. And it certainly can't compare to the tantrums of the self-centered crybabies who wail like a child whose rattle is snatched from its hands if someone should dare mention Dorothy Loudon or Dorothy Collins because somehow that will spoil their enjoyment of a contemporary performer. How pathetically absurd. Just when are you/they ever going to grow up?

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by Jordan Catalano 2012-12-27 19:57:32


Yeah! When?!

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by After Eight 2012-12-27 20:01:33


^

In all likelihood, the 12th of never.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by JoeKv99 2012-12-27 21:05:00


Why did I ever teach my mother how to use the internet?

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by Kad 2012-12-27 21:09:04


"And it certainly can't compare to the tantrums of the self-centered crybabies who wail like a child whose rattle is snatched from its hands if someone should dare mention Dorothy Loudon or Dorothy Collins because somehow that will spoil their enjoyment of a contemporary performer. How pathetically absurd."

But how does it compare to the smugness from people for whom nothing will compare to the productions they saw years ago? That is equally as pervasive and no less self-centered.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by justoldbill 2012-12-27 21:09:22


The above mention of Dorothy Collins lets me unload something here- Bernadette Peters just stank in that second-rate mess from Washington they dared call FOLLIES. And being old enough to have seen Avon Long as Sportin' Life, don't get me STARTED on that recent pile of excresence at the Richard Rodgers. Happy New Year, all!

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by After Eight 2012-12-27 21:10:20


Joe,

Ha ha. As if a dolt like you could teach anyone anything.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by After Eight 2012-12-27 21:27:49


I don't see any old-timer crying, "Don't mention Patti Lupone or Bernadette Peters because that will spoil my memory of Ethel Merman!"

Stop trying to censor people who saw things you didn't, or make believe the past never existed.

Enjoy whomever you want, and let others do the same.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by GavestonPS 2012-12-27 22:17:13


After Eight, I'm sorry your past comments were brought into this discussion.

Personally and though you and I often disagree, I enjoy your comparisons, especially to shows that ran in New York before I was old enough to visit.

I think such comparisons are absolutely appropriate on this board.

But when professional media critics (and let's be honest, New York theater professionals themselves) are constantly bemoaning the fact that the present is never as good as the past, it is ultimately very stifling to the creative process, not to mention discouraging to the theatergoing public.

Which (in addition to high costs) may be why Manhattan has become more a shopping mall where shows developed elsewhere are displayed than the major source of new material it once was.

(ETA I am speaking in general. As Namo pointed out, the remarks in question come from Musto's blog. Surely Musto is entitled to make any comparisons he likes in that space.)

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by After Eight 2012-12-27 22:39:40


"But when professional media critics (and let's be honest, New York theater professionals themselves) are constantly bemoaning the fact that the present is never as good as the past, it is ultimately very stifling to the creative process, not to mention discouraging to the theatergoing public. "

Well, we definitely do not see eye to eye, and here is just one more example.

No, I do not think that today's critics mourn for the past, in fact, just the opposite. Their taste and judgment have so declined that they now give raves to any piece of garbage -- and let's not mince words here, garbage is what it is--- that comes down the pike, detritus that would have been booed off the stage by critics 50 years ago.

It is this that is discouraging to the theatregoing public, who are played for suckers and end up feeling deceived and cheated.

It's not idealizing the past that's the problem, it's whitewashing the present.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by rjm516 2012-12-27 23:29:50


He's really annoying. I lost any sh*t I gave about his opinions when he sat in front of me at 'The Performers', looked DETERMINED to have the worst time ever before it even started, and then issued his total pan of the show.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by My Oh My 2012-12-28 00:21:17


I don't get the Musto bashing. It's as if he said something totally ridiculous and shockingly naive.

His little "old man" ramblings sparked this discussion. So I say he touched a nerve, even if I'm sure I get on his nerves, ha!

I happily count myself as one of the creaky fuddy duddies who wield about their canes and choke on their Polident dentures getting all worked up and nostalgic for the past. And I'm only gonna be 35.

When stuff sucks balls, it sucks balls, and today's stuff sucks pelotas. Obviously not all, but a lot of it does. That shouldn't affect anyone else's enjoyment of that which sucks balls.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by JoeKv99 2012-12-28 07:44:49


TODAY'S STUFF ALWAYS SUCKS. It was much better back then. I hope I get to live long enough to see today's stuff become the great art that 2050's shows aren't as good as.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by best12bars 2012-12-28 07:54:34


Michael Musto is no Bosley Crowther.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by CarlosAlberto 2012-12-28 08:05:07


When stuff sucks balls, it sucks balls, and today's stuff sucks pelotas.

...and them right there is a mouth full!!

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by After Eight 2012-12-28 08:35:20


"TODAY'S STUFF ALWAYS SUCKS"

Stupidity is stupidity even when it is capitalized. (Actually it just makes it stand out even more glaringly.) And you keep repeating the same stupidity over and over again, no matter how many times it is refuted.

You can try bold face, italics, Gothic fonts---- your relentless mantra will always be the falsehood it was the first time you said it.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by tazber 2012-12-28 09:30:45


Does failure to recognize sarcasm count as stupidity?

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by After Eight 2012-12-28 09:34:49


^

Not when it isn't presented as sarcasm.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by themysteriousgrowl 2012-12-28 10:20:58



Serious question -- are you autistic?

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by tazber 2012-12-28 10:30:26


See, I found the overly demonstrative and hyperbolic way it was presented to clearly be sarcastic.

I guess when communicating without hearing one's tone of voice it can be a challenge to interpret sarcasm though.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by After Eight 2012-12-28 10:44:09


"See, I found the overly demonstrative and hyperbolic way it was presented to clearly be sarcastic. "

See, apparently you haven't read this entire thread through, nor the thread about the last good season.

So now I'm going to have to spell it all out for you.

Here's what he said then, what he is blaring in capitals now:

"No one EVER likes the season at hand- there's simply too high a crap-to-gems ratio."

That is blatantly false. It was shown to him to be false. No, not everyone always dislikes the season at hand, and never has. His statement in capitals is what he attributes people as always saying and having said. Not true, and never has been.

Clear?

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by tazber 2012-12-28 11:41:22


Not really. Could you explain it again?

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by best12bars 2012-12-28 11:46:08


Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by Kad 2012-12-28 16:11:51


Taz, you will never understand.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by JoeKv99 2012-12-28 17:34:19


My neighbor's dog is pretty annoying. He's getting old and he's sadly neglected so all he has to do all day is sit in the yard and bark at whatever goes by. I know it's cruel to tease a dumb animal but he scares the hell out of the neighborhood kids with his behavior. I like to show them all that he's not scary he's rather sad. And stupid. And while his barking is annoying it's harmless.

So a few times a day I go out in the yard and rattle the fence or wave a branch. HE ALWAYS goes nuts and barks like crazy and RUNS to the fence snarling like mad. It always ends with his old angry face smashed into the chain link and the neighborhood kids and I laugh and laugh and laugh at his predictable antics. I know I should stop but he is so damn FUNNY with his toothless barking I just CAN'T stop. I know, I know, I should.

Huh. I don't know what made me think of that. Back to the thread!

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by GavestonPS 2012-12-28 17:58:33


No, I do not think that today's critics mourn for the past, in fact, just the opposite. Their taste and judgment have so declined that they now give raves to any piece of garbage -- and let's not mince words here, garbage is what it is--- that comes down the pike, detritus that would have been booed off the stage by critics 50 years ago.

50 years ago, Howard Taubman was the Drama Critic for THE NEW YORK TIMES, to be followed in three years by Clive Barnes. It doesn't get any stupider than that.

Otherwise, I shall bow to your knowledge of contemporary New York criticism. I no longer have to follow the overnighters, so I don't. Perhaps they are all teenagers nowadays.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by After Eight 2012-12-28 18:32:16


Psssst...... yes, you..... that's right.... you, the dolt over there..... You can laugh to your heart's content. Your "arguments" are still full of ........

holes.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by JoeKv99 2012-12-28 18:40:56


I think Gaveston makes some good points. It's rude to call him a dolt.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by best12bars 2012-12-28 18:43:33


After Eight, why do you try so hard? You have (some) interesting things to say, but you just play right into the hands here.

Silly.

Or entertaining? I forget which.

Oh, and can I just say that I vomit a little every time I read Michael Musto's alliterated assholian name? Must be a Pavlovian response.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by Jordan Catalano 2012-12-28 18:46:37


"holes."

I agree.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by After Eight 2012-12-28 18:52:55


Bars,

I'm not trying hard at all.

Debunking our dolt's "arguments" requires no effort. They're so ludicrous they debunk themselves.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by Jordan Catalano 2012-12-28 18:54:57


Excellent attempt at a point!

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by tazber 2012-12-28 20:37:03


If they debunk themselves then why do you waste your energy posting about them?




Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by Patti LuPone FANatic 2012-12-28 20:44:00


I personally admire Michael Musto's musings. To me, they're informative, mixed in with a dollop of his usual brand of snark. I may not agree with some of the things he writes about, but he is entertaining. from RC in Austin, Texas

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by After Eight 2012-12-28 20:51:12


^

Because people like you are so dense that they can't get it without explanation.

And then you still can't get it.

Oh, well. At least I did a good deed in trying to help you out, hopeless though the task may have been.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by Jordan Catalano 2012-12-28 20:56:04


You could do us all a good deed and throw your computer away.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by tazber 2012-12-28 20:56:26


Because people like you are so dense that they can't get it without explanation

Translation: Because I need to put everyone down to make myself feel better.

But the great irony of your posts is that your own arguments lack sound reason and you don't even realize it.

I will salute you however, you are very entertaining.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by After Eight 2012-12-28 21:13:53


^

My arguments are backed up by a negligible little thing called facts, though I realize that that's something you have little interest in, or understanding of.

But I'm glad to know at least you're entertained.

Because if that makes you happy, then that makes me happy, too.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by JoeKv99 2012-12-28 23:26:19


I've never had a single interaction with After Eight but I've seen him "argue" with others and he seems, well, different. Maybe "special." Every "fight" he picks he loses, flamboyantly and in a pool of incomprehensible ranting. One almost feels bad for him- as my aunt Essie would say "Bless his heart."

As is usually the case in these situations, I assume he is an autistic home-schooled fifth grader or Dollypop.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by FindingNamo 2012-12-28 23:44:43


My god, I get a Pavolivan vomitous response whenever the king of Hollywood via the great midwest holds forth on movies, film or cinema. But at least that's about pedantry and not about a proper name.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by After Eight 2012-12-29 02:32:03


Keep flailing.

You've been thrashed thoroughly in two threads, without my having to raise so much as an eyebow. No amount of name-calling, mockery or delusional ravings will change that. But hey, I guess you have to try to salve your wounded ego however you can.

And P.S. Your, ahem, "analogy" of tormenting an animal as a source of "humor" speaks far more about you than any of the stupidities you've voiced here.



Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by GavestonPS 2012-12-29 05:42:42


Am I the only dolt who has lost track completely as to which of us After Eight is insulting?

If you care to communicate, After Eight, perhaps your missives should have address lines.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by JoeKv99 2012-12-29 06:18:19


He seems to have taken a dislike to you Gaveston. Don't let it bother you. As Ethel Merman used to say "The Internet is full of weirdos."

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by After Eight 2012-12-29 06:55:31


Gav,

You're not the dolt.

He has no trouble knowing who he is.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by JoeKv99 2012-12-29 20:54:38


Coming soon from NBC "You're Not the Dolt!" A mash up of the Bachelor, The Apprentice and Lord of the Flies. Potential dolts compete in a fun-filled dolt-off, being eliminated one by one with Host Michael Musto's trademark send-off "You're Not the Dolt!"

Episode one: The 18 celebrity contestants must produce a Broadway-style musical while being pelted with rocks and garbage. One of them needs medical attention after being beaned with a well-thrown brick. But who threw it? Could it have been one of his or her own team mates? Tune in and see! Special guest Kathy Lee Gifford.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by GavestonPS 2012-12-29 22:34:25


He seems to have taken a dislike to you Gaveston. Don't let it bother you. As Ethel Merman used to say "The Internet is full of weirdos."

No problem. I wasn't hurt; I was just trying to keep up.

After Eight and I know we have different tastes, but in this thread I paid him a sincere compliment. I really do enjoy his accounts of shows, especially those I never got to see.

(Thanks for the clarification, A8.)

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by Patti LuPone FANatic 2012-12-30 08:00:24


I doubt she ever said that.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by JoeKv99 2012-12-30 12:46:55


Who could dislike you Gaveston? As always, I was making a jest.

And if you are referring to Ethel Merman, PLF, she most certainly did. I remember it distinctly: We got bullied into attending a Taylor Swift concert and on the airplane home, a fan asked Ethel if she had a Facebook page and Ethel told him "Hell no. The Internet is full of weirdos."

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by FindingNamo 2012-12-30 12:51:55


I do.

Michael Musto Apologizes
Posted by GavestonPS 2012-12-30 15:41:45


Yes, Namo does dislike me, though the fact that I can't remember why might suggest it's time to let it go. Or at least refresh my memory and let us resolve matters. I like him just fine and very much enjoy his posts.

But I knew you were joking, Joe. No worries.