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I couldn’t believe Bob Anthony’s nasty and unprofessional response to Bob Mondello’s review of Interact’s As You Like It (The Mail, 5/3).
Instead of complaining that Mondello “would so belittle other reviewers and critics…for their supportive reviews of this and other Interact productions,” Anthony should ask himself why such amateurish and sloppy work ever received support.
Outside the actors playing Celia, Corin, Touchstone, and the two dukes, I saw nothing commendable about this production. Most college theater is better done. After suggesting that Mondello “take a lengthy retreat to assess his qualifications and expertise as a reviewer,” Anthony excoriates Mondello for his negative review of As You Like It and his support of Arena Stage’s acclaimed Dance of Death! Since Anthony found Dance of Death “stupidly and boringly directed,” perhaps he should assess his own qualifications as a reviewer. Here’s a little tip for you, Anthony: If the actors and directors you dislike have great credentials—like JoAnne Akalaitis—and the ones you like are community theater amateurs, you have bad taste.
Anthony concludes that “the Washington theater scene does not need such vicious and impolite far-ranging (?) attacks on those who love and support living theater.” Funny. I’ve heard much nastier reviews from Anthony than I’ve ever read by Mondello.
What D.C. theater really doesn’t need is ignorant critics who suck up to a rich old woman’s embarrassingly bad vanity productions.
Bob M.—Keep calling ’em like you see ’em.
Bob A.—Shut up.