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Ballet Talk for Dancers

The Critics: Embedded critics?

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This was a clever idea, and it's nice that credit is duly given to the person whose idea it was. Too bad that the author failed to carry it out very well.

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Guest grace

skimming the article, i'm afraid i took it seriously, until i got to this para

Closer to home, the Minneapolis-based Star Tribune plans to send a reporter and a photographer to the Sydney Opera House in Australia. "We're confident that sending our staffers halfway around the globe to cover a story that has very little local import will reassert our own feelings of superiority," said editor Anders Gyllenhaal.
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I have no problem with embedded critics, as long as everyone is open about the fact that they're embedded

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I agree, Farrell Fan, the execution didn't match the concept, but it was a nice idea.


Alexandra, don't we already have some embedded criticism, in a sense? It occurred to me that some of the criticisms of the "embed" program – I still can't get used to that word applying to people, makes them sound like those robots from"A.I." – that the reporters get too near to the subject at hand (too close to the trees to see the forest, and they also start identifying too closely with the force they accompany) can also apply to some critics, who can run the danger of becoming too insider-ish. (I don't have anyone specific in mind, mind.)

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Dirac, yes, I think we have had embedded critics. That's what I meant by"if everybody knows about it." There are some that have been above board -- Joseph Mazo's book about New York City Ballet from the 1970s, for one. He followed the company very closely for a season and wrote a book about it (and a very balanced one, IMO). But there have always been critics who were a bit too close to the artists they covered -- I'm sure this is not only a ballet issue. The whole inside/outside issue -- how do you call attention to the work of a deserving artist who happens to be someone you know, and whom you know because you're interested in his work?

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