I thought I might have written a post similar to this in the past, but it turns out I have not.
I and my mum were talking once about theatre and the media and she said to me, you are a culture blogger, not a theatre critic. Since then it made me think…
Am I a theatre blogger/culture blogger or a theatre critic? I have been reviewing since 2012 and though I am no Lyn Gardner I think of myself as a theatre critic.
What is the difference?
So I guess we must try and identify the difference between blogger and critic? Maybe there is no difference? Let’s see…
Before I go any further I just want to say that there are professional books and academic works out there that go into more detail about this topic, feel free to check those out before you go into my blog.
In my opinion, a theatre blogger is sociable, they post pictures of the theatre and tickets on their social media- they like to create conversations with their followers.
In terms of the written content, I feel like it is more accessible, entertaining and lighter in tone. Perhaps the content is also to please the venue or theatre company PR rather than the audience. As a blogger, myself, I know that bloggers can get invited to press nights- so they may want to write a positive review to be asked back and retain that relationship between blogger and PR.
Again, in my opinion, a theatre critic does not post images on social media about where they are going. I feel that their content is audience-specific and can be quite formal in tone. When I say audience-specific- I mean they can use industry terms that the readers will understand as they may be of the understanding of theatre terms.
I think that theatre critics are totally honest, they won’t have to worry about PR so they can really say what they feel. In that, they are just writing for the audience and not for anyone else or to please a marketing team.
So what about me?
If I am honest, I probably am a bit of both in terms of the content. I like to keep my writing informal and chatty to you guys can read it and feel like you are chatting to me. But then I also like to think that some of my readers know their theatre so I like to use industry terms- especially in dance.
Now I don’t post pictures on my social media and I think I probably should, this will be beneficial for both audience and relationship with PRs. It will probably make me more attractive to PRs and give me more opportunities too.
I need to find a balance between keeping my integrity and professionalism but then making myself sociable and attractive to you guys and the PR.
I have only just scratched the surface with this topic but I don’t want to ramble on too much and make this blog an essay. I’d love to hear your thoughts on this if you are a blogger or critic. Please comment or tweet me 🙂