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Wall Street Journal critic on 'theater in the stix'

Wall Street Journal drama critic Terry Teachout, a tireless advocate for small theater companies across the United States, is putting out a call for outfits that want to have their work reviewed in the venerable WSJ. To my knowledge, in his well documented travels to places like Cleveland, New Hampshire and elsewhere, Teachout has never dropped by Buffalo to take in what is certainly one of the highest per-capita concentrations of quality theater in the country. And that's despite the earth-shattering closure of Studio Arena Theatre earlier this year.

In a two-year-old WSJ column he references on his blog, About Last Night, Teachout writes touchingly and accurately:

The time has come for American playgoers -- and, no less important, arts editors -- to start treating regional theater not as a minor-league branch of Broadway but as an artistically significant entity in and of itself. Take it from a critic who now spends much of his time living out of a suitcase: If you don't know what's hot in "the stix," you don't know the first thing about theater in 21st-century America.

Memo to ICTC, Road Less Traveled, the Kavinoky and all you other plucky small companies out there: Check out Teachout's blog and see if you can't catch his eye. It could go a long way toward getting Buffalo's mindblowingly diverse and vibrant theater scene the national recognition it deserves.

--Colin Dabkowski

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