If you don’t have something nice to say, as our mothers used to say, don’t say anything at all!
Of course, being that I am a movie and theatre critic I often have to write things that aren’t very nice, but obviously in situations where criticism isn’t warranted or asked for it’s best to leave well enough alone. Especially when the people you criticize are potentially your future co-workers.
Morgan James, a Broadway actress who has appeared in The Addams Family, Wonderland, and Godspell, learned that lesson very quickly when she took to Twitter to express very negative criticism after attending the first preview performance of Into the Woods, the current Shakespeare in the Park production of the Stephen Sondheim play at the Delacorte Theatre in Central Park, New York.
The tweet read, “HOW can you **** up Into the Woods?? I fear musicianship is dead in musical theatre. And acting, for that matter. #horrified” Though she soon removed the original tweet, she continued to criticize the show in follow-up messages with a far-more-diplomatic “It just wasn’t for me.”
Naturally this wasn’t taken too kindly by James’ fellow actors including from Matt Doyle, who recently starred in War Horse. Doyle tweeted, “Really don’t like seeing Broadway actors trashing other shows on Twitter. Have a little tact. We’re all in this together.” After a period of criticism aimed at her, James deleted the tweet and then tweeted, “I am really sorry for this firestorm. For my words, for responses, for the chaos. I am so sorry. I had NO idea this would turn into this. And I apologize to the cast, crew and creatives of the show and everyone at the Public.”
While James is obviously entitled to her opinion, unnecessarily expressing that opinion publicly when she is still building a career on Broadway is not a smart move from an employment standpoint — sure, she got her name out there, but for all the wrong reasons. In this era of social networking, it’s important to remember that comments we write to our friends and followers can still easily reach others who we might not want to read them, and this might include people we really ought to support. Keep that in mind next time you publicly criticize the work of others in your industry, whatever it may be — there’s a good chance that you’ll end up burning a bridge that you really shouldn’t torch!
via The Guardian