Tuesday, April 12, 2011

I'm being crippled by the arts

Financially, I mean. I haven't tripped over a Henry Moore.

The problem is theatre. I'm a bit addicted, I have discovered. I'm totally blaming my parents, for not only introducing me to the medium as a child but also buying me membership to some of capital's best stages. Membership means advance booking. Which means cheap tickets (cheaper than cinema, often).

And my mates. Who either work in theatre, near theatre or like the theatre. Bastards.

And probably the better class of critics too, who keep telling me about the stuff I'd really like to see.

So far this year I've been to nine theatrical productions. I have another two this week. And a few more lined up after Easter*. Cheap seats and all, but it adds up. I looked at my bank account last week and nearly had a conniption. Oopsie.

Of course, I am extremely lucky and fortunate to have anywhere near this kind of access to "the arts"** - which are incredibly valuable, both culturally and eocnomically. I am horrified by the depth of the cuts to the culture scene in the UK. It's madness and must be ended***. It's too the detriment of our existence. Art (drama included) is one of the ways we make sense of the world, and by doing that, we move ourselves forward.

But so much other really important stuff is being cut back on - fairly pointlessly - that it's difficult to direct enough anger in one direction at once.

Yeah I know. I sound pompous. But even if I'm a bit poorer in one sense (because of my poor financial management skillz), I'm certainly richer in others.

I value the arts, is what I'm saying, really.

(And also I need to find a way of making money from this. Where's my column in the Independent on Sunday?! Tsk.)

* Sorry, the Royal Wedding Bank Holiday Eve.

** Well it's what they call it on Radio 4...

*** Sound the long-standing crush klaxon. I was watching Howard's End for all the wrong reasons.