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Arts & Entertainment, etc.

Another critic bites the dust

March 4, 2008
The Los Angeles Times has decided it doesn’t need a full-time dance critic and so Lewis Segal is now out of a job.

What does that matter to you?

Well, it’s no secret that daily newspapers are placing less emphasis on arts and entertainment criticism. Where there's still arts coverage left, it’s more likely to be feature stories and previews (and, even then, it leans toward television and popular music).

So as I send off my credentials and clips to join the American Theatre Critics Association, I have to ask: What role will critics not academic critics but those of us trying to reach the average reader have in the future of journalism?

I’ve got my own ideas on the subject I should, or else why would I have this job? But I’m curious to hear what you have to say, whether you are an arts professional, an audience member or an intersted bystander.

Oh, and for a taste of Lewis Segal’s insightful writing on dance, read a sample here. Hard-core ballet fans might not like what he has to say, but the piece reflects the kind of clear, opinionated, thoughtful, passionate writing that is in shorter and shorter supply in newspaper arts sections these days.

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