#apollo: twitter theatre

Much as I loathe people texting in theaters, I thought this was kind of cool: a theater in Portland invited audience members to twitter about the word premiere of their play, Apollo, in real time during the performance. Reading through the log of twitter comments from the show is fascinating, though I wish I’d seen the show…or do I? I kinda enjoyed just reading the feed and imagining.

It’s amusing, though, to see the real-time (and conflicting) reactions to the play’s choices:

msalt: #Apollo Wake up little Susie for Sputnik, good choice.

ladyfriend: #apollo Oh God… “wake up little susie” AND Bobbie Sox? Is there no less tired way to get across the idea of 1957??

Gimmicky? Yes, but as social media and portable data devices become more and more a part of our lives, I think we’ll see a lot more experimentation with incorporating them into theatre pieces.

thanks to Maryann Devine

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Toxic Bag Productions, Inc. provides sound effects and music for independent films, animated shorts, theatrical productions, dance performances, podcasts and video games. They work out of their studio on the north side of Chicago.

Posted on March 18, 2009, in Theatah and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. I have mixed feelings about this. As a social experiment it’s fantastic, but I wonder what they plan to do with all that information. Will/would they adjust based on audience reaction to a piece?

    Will theater eventually become a live action Wikipedia?

  2. Good questions.

    Clearly I can’t speak to what their intent is, but I don’t know that they need to do anything with it. It certainly could be used to Wiki-ize a show, but how many theatre companies change a show once it’s up in response to critics or feedback at talkbacks? Why would this be any different?

    If you’re workshopping a show I think that’s another matter. Or if you’re re-mounting a show and want to tweak some things that you thought could work better, I would see that sort of information as valuable. Other than that I don’t know that it’s any more impactful than a conversation about the play at the bar after the show.

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