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Howard Sherman
Howard Sherman has held executive and staff positions at the American Theatre Wing, O'Neill Theatre Center, Geva Theatre, Goodspeed Musicals and Hartford Stage. He currently consults on arts management and communications and writes a monthly column for The Stage in London. He tweets as @hesherman and his prior blog posts can be found at

Entries by Howard Sherman

Actual Acting Advice From Anonymous Authors

(0) Comments | Posted January 3, 2014 | 8:27 AM

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The rise of internet culture has caused many shifts in how we consume information, with one of the more amusing side benefits being the rise of the fictional Twitter user. Disregarding spambots, the anonymity that...

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Another Sad Farewell For August Wilson

(0) Comments | Posted November 26, 2013 | 1:11 PM

August Wilson in 2004 (photo by David Cooper; courtesy of Yale Repertory Theatre)

If Trip Gabriel, the New York Times reporter who wrote Sunday's story about the dire straits of the August Wilson Cultural Center in Pittsburgh, were steeped in...

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Seriously President Obama, What About The NEA?

(0) Comments | Posted November 21, 2013 | 2:28 PM

November 21, 2013

President Barack Obama

1600 Pennsylvania Avenue

Washington DC 20500

Dear President Obama:

There was an anniversary yesterday, and I'm willing to bet that you forgot all about it. You didn't need to send a card, but it would have been nice if you'd made some gesture of...

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Can The Bigoted Plays of Ole Miss Football Be Rewritten?

(0) Comments | Posted October 4, 2013 | 11:08 AM

If you've not yet heard the story, the basic facts are these. Earlier this week, members of the football team at the University of Mississippi (aka "Ole Miss") were required to attend a performance of The Laramie Project, the play by Tectonic Theater Project and Moisés Kaufman about...

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The Friday Night Spotlights of "Drama High"

(0) Comments | Posted September 25, 2013 | 6:30 AM

I have a confession to make: I am constitutionally unable to watch the acclaimed TV series Friday Night Lights. Now I realize this may be surprising to those who know and admire that program. My inability to sit through more than the first...

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Brave New Tempest, That Has Such People In It

(0) Comments | Posted September 10, 2013 | 10:55 AM


There are many reasons to enthuse about The Public Theater's inaugural "Public Works" production of The Tempest - the conception and direction of Lear de Bessonet, the original score by Todd Almond, the perfect weather that blessed...

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Forgotten Sources For New Musicals

(1) Comments | Posted September 4, 2013 | 10:38 AM


Let's face it: railing against Broadway musicals adapted from movies is a useless exercise. As long as people keep buying tickets for them, and as long as enough of them turn out to be...

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Who Is High School Theatre For?

(6) Comments | Posted July 23, 2013 | 12:47 PM

What is the purpose of putting on shows in high school? Is it educational? Recreational? Is it community relations? Is it a family activity?

I've always thought that high school theatre was for the benefit of the students putting on the show - for the education, the team-building, the exploration...

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Why Was Drama Eliminated At Everett High?

(5) Comments | Posted July 17, 2013 | 8:59 AM

Follow this with me, will you?

"The plays bothered a lot of us," says a school superintendent, referring to works presented by a high school drama group. "The plays had references to sex and drinking." In one instance, a male student reportedly doffed his pants, revealing shorts.

Subsequently, the school...

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New Routes To Shakespeare

(0) Comments | Posted July 8, 2013 | 8:42 AM

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I'm unable to see a Shakespeare play without thinking of my late mother.

"How sweet," you think, "He and his mother must have shared many great evenings together watching Shakespeare. Their common love of The Bard transcends her...

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Dear President Obama: About The NEA...

(0) Comments | Posted June 30, 2013 | 7:16 PM

July 1, 2013

President Barack Obama
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue
Washington DC 20500

Dear President Obama:

I realize it's been a busy week, what with the overturning of the Defense of Marriage Act and the gutting of the Voting Rights Act. I know you're on a week-long trip to...

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What The Arts Can Learn From "The Fast And The Furious"

(1) Comments | Posted June 7, 2013 | 10:12 AM


Yes, I'm serious about the headline. I feel your scorn, but before your jerking knee sends you to the orthopedist, let me get right to the point.

There are any number of things one can object to in the Fast & Furious movies: the...

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Address: Sing Sing Prison, Grover's Corners NY, The Mind of God

(2) Comments | Posted June 4, 2013 | 9:11 AM


"Is there no one in town aware of social injustice?"

Part of the compact we make when we go to the theatre is to shut out the outside world and completely immerse ourselves in the world displayed before us by artists, by actors. We...

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My Cast Recording, In Just No Time At All

(1) Comments | Posted May 9, 2013 | 10:31 AM

I keep expecting to get jaded. Even though the actuarial tables tell me that I'm more than halfway through my life, I can still be a teenaged drama club kid, over and over again, with only the slightest provocation. Yesterday was one of those days.

Like so many in "the...

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Standing On An Important Stage

(0) Comments | Posted April 12, 2013 | 11:50 AM

I have seen Stephen Sondheim's Sweeney Todd many times over the years, probably more than any single show. It has thrilled me, scared me, impressed me, made me laugh. I mouth the words, I bob my head, I conduct in imperceptibly small movements of my hands. But until this past...

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Thinking Inside The Arts Box With Tilda

(1) Comments | Posted March 29, 2013 | 9:57 AM

For a certain breed of relatively cultured wags (including the Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright David Lindsay Abaire and, less exaltedly, me), Tilda Swinton sleeping in a glass box at the Museum of Modern Art is a comedic source that just keeps on giving. After all, this is an Academy Award-winning actor...

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There's No Plays Like Home

(0) Comments | Posted March 8, 2013 | 12:42 PM

British arts journalist Matt Trueman wrote an intriguing piece for the Financial Times this past weekend, about the relative scarcity of new plays from America being produced in England, and vice versa. New Yorkers may not think this is the case, given the fairly steady flow of high...

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Michelle Obama's Faustian Bargain For The Arts

(4) Comments | Posted February 25, 2013 | 3:26 PM

Perhaps you were asleep. Or drowsy. Or buzzed from a drinking game.

Perhaps you were focused on the dress. You were comparing it to all of the evening's other dresses.

Perhaps simply didn't want to watch and stuck with your regular Sunday evening diet of zombies.

But the fact remains...

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Theatre's Problem With "Smash"

(4) Comments | Posted February 11, 2013 | 9:37 AM

If you are looking to read yet another blog post filled with snark for, or describing the "hate watching" of, the television series Smash, this is not the post you're looking for. Move along.

With the second season of Smash now underway, to precipitously underwhelming ratings, I'd like to discuss...

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Premature Vultures Circle Cirque du Soleil

(0) Comments | Posted January 22, 2013 | 1:35 PM

It is unfortunate that "zirkusschadenfreude" is not an actual German word, because there seemed to be a lot of it flying around last week, that is to say, "joy at the unhappiness of a circus." Many news outlets and commentators were pulling out the wordplay a bit gleefully last week...

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