Reese Schonfeld: The Man Who Invented CNN

I was saddened to read, a few days ago, about the death of Reese Schonfeld, 88, the founding president of CNN. I was the television critic and reporter for the Atlanta Constitution when Ted Turner launched television’s first live, 24-hour news channel in June 1980, and I followed its start-up and early years as closely … Continue reading Reese Schonfeld: The Man Who Invented CNN

Is Zoom Theater Really Worth It?

I feel guilty that I haven’t been reviewing any theater during the pandemic. Of course, there is no live theater to review during the pandemic. But a number of theater companies have been streaming recorded versions of earlier productions, and some have been offering up new works — many pegged to our current, hunkered-down, Zoom-infested moment. I've … Continue reading Is Zoom Theater Really Worth It?

Coming Late to ‘West Side Story’

Critics and audiences are all over the map on the new Broadway revival of West Side Story, staged by avant-garde Belgian director Ivo Van Hove. Some find it a striking reinvention of the beloved 1957 Leonard Bernstein-Jerome Robbins-Stephen Sondheim musical. For others, it’s a confusing desecration. My own reaction is complicated by a somewhat embarrassing … Continue reading Coming Late to ‘West Side Story’

‘Judgment Day’: The Show of the Year

Just when I was about to give up hope for serious theater in New York, after sitting through overpraised trifles (The Sound Inside), overwritten behemoths (The Inheritance), and boringly au-courant political plays (Heroes of the Fourth Turning), my faith was restored by the most exciting theater event of the year. It’s Richard Jones’s new production … Continue reading ‘Judgment Day’: The Show of the Year