Audiences rule, ok?

Arts festivals the subject, yet again, of Leo Schofield’s scrutiny and complaint:
“Audience”, he says, is “a word one hears infrequently as artists seek to tell their individual stories, to examine, investigate, confront, explore, dissect, ponder something on their mind. “Surely such pursuits are better left to the psychiatrist’s couch.”
The Age, perhaps thoughtlessly, suggests Schofield’s speech, planned for tomorrow, “launches bombs”.
Launching debate about arts and festivals is always a good thing, although things have moved on from when Leo was running things in his very passionate and flamboyant style. Festivals are very tuned in to audiences these days…

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He has a point (but I disagree with Ivor Indyk …)

A cross article in the Guardian by Meredith Jaffe about the dismissive attitude of some writers and critics towards “middle-brow” fiction has alerted me, belatedly, to Ivor Indyk’s essay in the Sydney Review of Books berating not only literary prizes (and their move towards “middle-brow” winners) but also writers festivals.

Ivor, who is an untiring editor and publisher, Continue reading