Insulting and disrespectuful

By China Marsh

Editor, the Gauntlet,

[Re: “Dastardly dreadful Dubnyk drags down drama,” Theater Review, December 1, 2005]

As a former student of the U of C drama department, I recently had the extreme pleasure of taking in the drama department’s newest production The Libertine. I also had the extreme displeasure of reading the Gauntlet’s review of this production, as written by Kyle Francis. At first, I totally agreed with everything Mr. Francis said about the production. However, in reading what consumed pretty much of the last HALF of the article, I was appalled at what had been printed. Putting aside the fact that Mr. Francis and I apparently disagree on the quality of Devon Dubnyk’s performance, I was disapointed in the way the “Opinions Editor” outright attacked Dubnyk’s ability as a actor, not only blaming him for every shortcoming the show had, but also likening him to syphilis and “a hooker with teeth on 3rd Avenue.” Not only are these references insulting and disrespectful, they are also appallingly unprofessional. If a reviewer finds a particular characteristic of a play to be responsible for the ultimate fall of the entire production, that is a more than fair opinion to have. But I would think even the most amateur of writers would find a tactful way to say so, without outright insulting that particular actor. (Especially when I don’t recall seeing that particular reviewer in any recent productions around campus.) It’s unfortunate that this obviously articulate writer lost the respect of his readers with his inability to use tact and intelligent criticism in reviewing a project that so many people put so much work into.


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