Responding to a claim that theater is just for white people

January 5, 2012

I started to comment in response to this claim that non-whites are disproportionately absent from the theater audience because they just don't care about the art form, or--as the author insouciantly asks, and as You've Cott Mail titled the post--"Is it so bad to admit that theater is for white people?" But there are so many theater practitioners in Chicago who can speak better than I to the false assumptions and unacknowledged prejudices buried in the piece that I hope some of them will speak up. 

A teaser of what you'll find if you click the link: black people liked baseball enough to found their own league when the major leagues excluded them, but black theater companies are "few and far between." Any institutional reason for this outcome is dismissed under the rubric "people of color don't care enough about theater to sacrifice something else for its attendance." 

PLEASE someone speak up about this; the foam from my mouth is getting all over the keyboard.