Sunday, January 25, 2009

Actor's Publicty Stunt Backfires in a Big Way

This saga has dragged out over the last three days. It's a sad, sordid story that should serve as a cautionary tale to us all: that old saw about "any publicity is good publicity" doesn't always hold true.

CHAPTER 1

The first we heard of the story,it was from a Reliable Source; Christine Dolen, the Drama Queen. The story appeared in her blog on January 6, and it was straightforward enough; Rising Action makes Phelps' calendar. She starts off describing Fred Phelps, a loathsome creature:
...he has spent the bulk of his golden years (and the years leading up to them) spewing what he believes to be Biblically-justified hate. He and his followers picketed the funeral of Matthew Shepard, the young gay man whose murder was detailed in Moises Kaufman's The Laramie Project. Gay men are apparently No. 1 on Phelps' enemies list.
Obviously, I missed the parable where Christ preached funeral desecration. But the crux of the story follows, and there's a curious sense of foreshadowing:
So it is hardly surprising (except perhaps for the relatively small size and short history of the company) that Oakland Park's Rising Action Theatre has become one of Phelps' targets with its current production.
Dolen actually makes an excellent point here; hardly anyone in South Florida knows about Rising Action. Even given the influence of the internet, Rising Action is a guppy in a fairly large lake of theatrical endeavors.

Actors' Playhouse did La Cage Aux Folles a couple of years ago: they are a much larger theatre, with a larger audience, a prime downtown location just a block from City Hall. I remember doing Keely and Du at Florida Stage: we were worried about pickets protesting the sensitive nature of topic (in the play, a conservative christian group kidnaps a woman from an abortion clinic intending to force her to carry to term). We had faced protests a few years earlier for bringing the AIDS awareness play THE INNER CIRCLE into Palm Beach County schools. We'd already gained notoriety: we were a perfect target, but not only did no one picket, no one wrote nasty letters. Caldwell has also done a number of gay-themed plays; it's a pillar of south Florida Theatre. Surely their productions would have prompted action.

But no one seemed suspicious, just surprised. The community seemed to be lining up to support the small company that is "dedicated to promoting and educating the public in diversity and tolerance for all people through theatre arts."
...artistic director David Goldyn says commisioner Larry Gierer and several ministers plan to be there in support of artistic and religious tolerance...
The article is emailed around, and posted on Facebook several times. Many of us marked our calendars and counted down the days.

CHAPTER 2

The next we hear of the story, there's a change in plans, as reported by Mary Damiano in Miami Artzine.
The Westboro Baptist Church of Kansas has canceled its planned protest of Rising Action Theatre in Oakland Park and their production of The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told. The protest had been scheduled for tonight, Friday, January 16.
But before we can let out a sigh of relief, out comes the surprise twist:
According to Shirley Phelps of the Westboro Baptist Church, last December, someone who identified themselves as being associated with Rising Action Theatre e-mailed Westboro Baptist Church asking them to picket the production.
WHAAAAT?
Rising Action artistic director David Goldyn said that he did not send the church an e-mail asking them to protest, but that he later e-mailed the church thanking them for the publicity generated by the protest. Goldyn said ticket sales skyrocketed after news of the protest broke.
Now, I know quite a few producers who assumed that this was, in fact, a publicity stunt.
"In no way shape or form did anyone from my theatre start this," said Goldyn, "and it hurts me that somebody would say so."
Hmmm. Maybe those on the business end are just cynical. Damiano doesn't really imply anything, and doesn't supply anthing that actually contradicts Goldyn. A bunch of people erased the date from their calendar.
"We see that they accomplished what they were after--getting their publicity," said Phelps.
Could this be a petulant attempt by Phelps to cast doubt on Rising Action?

CHAPTER 3

It turns out that Mary wrote her blog after discussing the issue with Brandon K. Thorp, the fiery young theatre critic for the New Times. He wrote about in the Broward/Palm Beach New Times' blog, Juice.
I wasn't going to write about the cancellation, because I liked the idea of SoFla's political class showing up to do battle with the Baptists and leaving unfulfilled. But I did mention it to my friend Mary Damiano, the editor of The Miami ArtZine. She decided to blog about the cancellation, and to confirm the information I gave her, she put in a call to the Westboro Baptist Church.
But Damiano may have been trying to give Rising Action the benefit of the doubt, because she didn't include all the fruits of that phone call. As she left it, we might have believed that Westboro Church was trying to undo the positive effects of its previously announced protest by making it appear that Rising Action was complicit in creating the protest.

And there it might have rested, if David Goldyn hadn't done something incredibly stupid gotten indignant.

He sicced a lawyer on Damiano.
...this mild treatment was enough to prompt a call from Goldyn's lawyer and even a hideous phone call from David himself, in which Goldyn allegedly called Damiano "pigheaded" and "revolting" and claimed she was trying to destroy his theater.
This prompted Brandon's story, and prompted Brandon to include the smoking gun: the email that Westboro Baptist claimed was the basis for the scheduling of the protest:

-----Original Message-----
From: davidgoldyn@bellsouth.net
Sent: Saturday, December 27, 2008 2:56 AM
To: pio@godhatesamerica.com
Subject: Rising Action Theatre Presents The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told


Rising Action Theatre Presents The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told.
This is a gay play that features Adam and Steve and Jane and Mable in
the garden of Eden. The first act is a gay retelling of the Old
Testament of the Bible from the creation all the way up to the
nativity which features a pregnant lesbian. The second act is set in
modern day NYC and features the same characters, only they have no
recollection of their past lives.

This is a play that is an absolute affront to everything traditional
Christians hold dear, and a prime target for protest. The theatre is
located in Fort Lauderdale in a very gay suburb, surrounded by gay
clubs, shops, and cafes. As a part of the Miami-Fort Lauderdale media
market, home to more than 6 million people, media coverage would be
heavy and would reach many households.

The theatre's website is located at www.risingactiontheatre.com there you can find an address and information about the show which runs from now till Jan 18th 2009.

You can go here to read media coverage about the show:

http://www.miamiherald.com/living/story/819206.html



(END OF LETTER)

It takes a tremendous set of balls to threaten a lawsuit if you knew that there might be an email undermining your position completely. Either David Goldyn has a big brass set, or he didn't know that there was such an email.

But why would Westboro Baptist complete fabricate such a letter? It makes no sense. It's also reasonable to accept that the only way they'd target such a small and relatively unknown theatre is if someone had urged them to do so.

Brandon's position is that while Westboro Baptist is a cult of extremists, they do live by a strict code based on the Bible, and thus it's unlikely that they'd bear false witness by making up the message, or even altering it to look as if Goldyn sent it.

Chapter 4


David Goldyn comments on this story:
It's hard to deny a rumor. Have you ever tried it? The more you deny it the guiltier you look. So I am in a funny situation. So here goes.

I assure you the email supplied by the church is a forgery. I don't know who did this and I am not pointing fingers. I am not the source of it plain and simple.

Neither Brandon Thorpe nor yourself interviewed me before going to press with this inflammatory story.

Prior to Dec 29, I had very little knowledge of who Fred PHelps or Westboro Baptist Church was.

It seems very odd to me that members of our theatre community are so quick to point fingers. Are we that jaded that you would take the word of something called "godhatesamerica" and "Godhatesfags" over one of your own?

These accusations are repugnant and hurtful.

Sincerely,

David Goldyn
Well, I've noted, I was giving you the benefit of the doubt following Mary Damiano's story. But when people start making threats of lawsuits and hurling invectives, well, I take exception to that. Damiano treated you very fairly, especially in light of comments made by one of your actors.

And as for contacting you; I aggregate stories published on the internet. I don't call people for stories. I don't do interviews, and I don't review plays. I find what's out there that's pertinent to my charter, and I put it together so it's coherent, and I publish it. If you wish to comment - well, you've already discovered that you can do that.

I would never have entered the fray but for Brandon's report. I see that Brandon's story has been removed; I see that the New Times is willing to take your word over that of Westboro Baptist, or at least over the word of its own journalist who claims to have contacted the organization.

I'll grant you this much: I've altered the title of the post, and included your comments into the body of the article.

But frankly, I'm still suspicious. Brandon is correct that it is highly unlikely that anyone working with Fred Phelps forged an email with your name. Christine' observation that Rising Action is an extremely unlikely target must also be considered. And I must consider that whoever wrote the email included not one but TWO links to promotional stories. I spend hours a week tracking down those kinds of links; they're not easy to find. And yet whoever wrote those stories knew right where they were. Why not just point to your website, which is far more logical and a lot easier?

If the party sending the email simply wanted to call Fred Phelps down on you, using your name to do it has no benefit, since it wouldn't take much to determine that the name on the email matches that of a person working at the target organization. Which, it seems to me, is ultimately what happened.

I will stipulate that without the entire original email, including the paths in the headers, it cannot be demonstrated that you are, in fact, the party that sent the email.

But the lesson here, David, is still yours to learn: Mary was willing to let it stand. She even printed your statement denying contacting Phelps without contradiction. She reported only facts: Westboro Baptist Church was canceling the protest, that they only scheduled that protest because some one sent them an email informing them of the play, and that Westboro Baptist believed that the message was sent by someone with Rising Action theatre, and you stated that that person was not you.

Which leaves the question: if David Goldyn didn't send the initial letter, who did?

Final Chapter

Well, as it turns out, someone from Rising Action - or at least its production of Most Fabulous Ever Told - has stepped forward to accept responsibility for the letter.
Jan 24, 2009

To whom it may concern:

This issue of David Goldyn at Rising Action Theatre being accused of sending the Westboro Bapist Church a letter prompting the planned protest has just come to my attention. I am Larry Fields, I appeared in the production as Adam, and I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that David Goldyn DID NOT SEND the referenced letter. I sent it. I sent it to them using my real name and my real email address.


The church has fooled all of you, in an effort to (surprise surprise) hurt this gay theatre. The South Florida Theatre Blogspots states "It's the epitome of arrogance to threaten to sue someone for saying something about you that you know beyond any doubt is completely true," and it goes on to say "It's the 21st Century, people. The Information Age is in full swing." That's a good point, about the information age, and you should know that not only is this claim by the church NOT "completely true" but also EASILY verifiably false using some of that 21st Century technology.

Contact Bellsouth. Ask the ISP if any email originated from his IP address on that hour and date with that message in the body of the email sent to the church's address? NO. I sent that release to the Westboro Baptist Church, that is verifiable. I sent it to them from my home in Miami on my own time from my computer and using my email address. I sent it in the "comments" page. In this 21st Century age of technology is it easy to cut and paste an email message together to create a false email, and are you shocked that the Westboro Baptist church would do such a thing?

They took David's email address from when he emailed them telling them that they were responsible for surging ticket sales, and they pasted it onto my original letter, because they didn't know who I was, but they knew that he was the producer, so they wanted to attribute the letter to him, in an effort to cause trouble for Rising Action. Had due diligence been performed you would have discovered this.

By publishing this story without properly vetting it for accuracy you are harming a local theatre in our community and a producer who did nothing wrong. A full retraction and apology to him and his company is warranted. This is simple ethics.

As for my involvement. Let me make clear, I am an independent contractor for any company that I work for, including Rising Action. I am not an employee, they are in no way responsible for what I do on my own time. I sent that letter to Westboro in an effort to use them, a vicious anti gay hate group, to the advantage of a gay theatre company, by giving the theatre increased media visibility and coverage. It was my intention to use Westboro Baptist Church to help a gay company, I had no malicious intent and as a private citizen with no official ties to any theatre company I am totally within my rights to send them what amounted to a press release.

I never made David Goldyn or any of the artistic staff at Rising Action aware of my actions. It came as a surprise to me that the Westboro people actually took my bait. It is unfortunate that you at the South Florida Theatre Blogspot, Brandon K Thorpp, and Mary Damiano have been duped and used by the Westboro church to harm a local theatre. Again, just a little investigation on the part of the journalists covering this story would have ended it before it ever began. The records are clear, and I'm sure David Goldyn would be happy to have Bellsouth provide you with proof that no such email ever originated on its server from him.

Westboro Baptist Church is not exactly a trusted source. They are a fanatical hate group, our press in the theatre community here in South Florida should not take their word, or God forbid their side, without making sure that what they claim is true. In this case it is a total bold faced lie.

And a little side note, you reference my letter to Mary Damiano, admittedly written in poor taste in talking about David Goldyn. He had nothing to do with that. I have spoken to Mary on the telephone and I have written her two separate letters of apology for my bad taste and poor judgement in sending her that letter. I believe she will be publishing that letter in the next edition of Artzine.

Please make this right.. Please don't attempt to harm a theatre's reputation that does such a unique thing in our community, providing a gay theatre for everyone. David Goldyn DID NOT WRITE THAT LETTER, AND HIS REACTION TO IT WAS GENUINE. I have no reason to lie about this, and there is hard evidence to back it up.

--Larry Fields
I believe Larry. It's not the first ill-advised letter he's sent.

But he also makes the claim - similar to Mr. Goldyn's - that if I had called Rising Action, I would have been able to clear this up. And that's simply not true. Mr. Goldyn was already on the record stating he didn't send the email. Had I called him up, he would have simply repeated his earlier statement. Mr. Goldyn knew that he didn't send it, but that's not the same thing as having evidence to contradict the evidence showing that he had sent it.

For that, we needed Larry Fields, and until he admitted sending the letter, we had no reason to call him.

As for "vetting for accuracy," it shows a particular amount of gall on Fields' part to claim that Mary Damiano was "duped," when in fact she published an entirely accurate story. She alone was willing to accept Goldyn's statement at face value.

If anyone owes Mr. Goldyn an apology, it is Larry Fields. He alone knew all the facts about the matter. He alone took the steps that led to the current situation. At any time, Fields could have contacted Damiano, Thorp, or myself, and presented the facts that only he had access to.

Instead, he waited until Rising Action was pretty well coated in mud.

So sorry, Larry. You are not in a position to lecture anyone on ethics. I wont' be retracting anything, and I certainly won't make your apologies for you. This is your mess, Larry.

But now, I think, we have all the facts.
  • Actor Larry Fields decides to 'help out' his theatre by convincing a radical right wing religious organization to picket the theatre. He sends them an email suggesting that the production would be a good opportunity for a picket.
  • Westboro Baptist schedules a day to picket the production that coincides with other activity in Florida.
  • The Miami Herald picks up the story, and it quickly circulates through the theatre community. Not only is a counter-protest discussed, people start buying tickest the show in support of the organization.
  • David Goldyn sends an email to Westboro Baptist, taunting them with the fact that their scheduled protest has helped to promote his show.
  • Westboro Baptist cancels the protest, and claimed that someone from the theatre had tipped them off originally.
  • Mary Damiano's story was completely accurate; she reported what she was told by Westboro Baptist, and she printed David Goldyn's statements denying that he sent it.
  • Goldyn, unable or unwilling to believe that anyone from his organization might have contacted Westboro Baptist, makes an outraged phone call to Damiano, and consults a lawyer.
  • When Brandon followed up with Westboro Baptist, they saw an opportunity to discredit the theatre, and took Fields' original letter and pasted the header from Goldyn's latter message taunting them about how their announcment had helped his ticket sales to the body of the original tip.
  • Goldyn, knowing that he didn't send the tip, is still outraged, and convinced New Times to kill the story.
  • By this time, I've picked up the story. Recognizing that the only way the story makes any sense at all is if someone from Rising Action had originally tipped them off, I'm not willing to completely drop the issue, although I - albeit grudgingly - admit that there's no strong evidence that David Goldyn was that person.
  • Larry Fields comes clean.
What a sordid little affair! Who knew all this could circle around a small theatre in Wilton Manors?

Larry is correct about one thing: Rising Action Theatre does fill a niche in the local theatre scene. It's a shame that Larry's plan backfired in such a spectacular manner. If he hadn't written the letter in the first place, none of the rest of it would have happened. The show would have gone on, ticket sales might not have spiked, but maybe word of mouth would have gotten them there anyway.

If David Goldyn hadn't gotten angry about Damiano's entirely accurate story, Brandon would never have leapt to her defense, and I never would have picked up the story, and we would never have learned the truth: Larry Fields has no future in Public Relations.

Oh, and we've also learned that Westboro Baptist is willing to lie and cheat to acheive its ends, thus revealing their complete and utter hypocrisy. Which, ultimately, is no suprise to anyone.

25 comments:

  1. I urge you to change your headline.


    Shouldn't your headline be
    "Journalists and Media jump to conclusions."

    You take no responsibility as a journalist for what has transpired
    and has hurt our theatre.

    Sincerely,

    David Goldyn

    ReplyDelete
  2. The current headline is more accurate.

    First, Damiano's story was completely accurate, and my story was about your protest of that story. Had you not threatened Ms. Damiano for writing a completely accurate - and fair - story, I would never have picked it up.

    I take no responsibility for damage to your theater because I am not responsible for any damage to your theatre; that responsibility lies with you and Mr. Fields. He created the mess, and you made it worse.

    I have updated the story as new facts became available.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Dear CL

    I am sorry I lost my temper in the last comment. That is my problem and cross to bear.And I take full responsibiity for it.

    Since the theatre nor I knew nothing of this so called publicity stunt, your title is misleading and puts a bad light on our theatre. I urge you to change it.

    I can't believe with all this malicious behavior on the part of Westboro Church you would want to cause our theatre more harm.

    Larry Fields is one of 250 independent contractor/actors who cross our doors every year. He is not a permanant member of the theatre nor is he affiliated with us other than as an independent contractor/actor

    Now that you know the truth, the right thing to do would be changing the headline. It was NOT
    our publicity stunt and your headline and article still seems to put us at fault.


    Feel free to call me and discuss this. Mary DAmiano has the number. So does your friend Brandon.

    Sincerely,
    David Goldyn

    ReplyDelete
  4. It was a publicity stunt: just not yours. I've altered the title accordingly, although I believe that the story clearly indicates that you and the theatre didn't have anything to do with this fiasco, outside of you losing your temper with Mary Damiano.

    This is a cautionary tale for us all: if we have a great idea to promote a show we're involved in, we must be responsible to the other people in that production and take the idea to our producer.

    ReplyDelete
  5. How about 'Dewey defeats Truman'.

    ReplyDelete
  6. It is not fun for us in the gay community to face off with bigots like Mr. Phelps. The fact that a gay man would invite this hatemonger to come into our community and bring with him all the vile words and actions he uses against us is outrageous. Larry Fields and David Goldyn (I do not believe for one second the Mr. Goldyn knew nothing of this e-mail) have put the gay community in harms way. Mr. Phelps and his flock do not fight fair. What if something had gone wrong? What if someone had been arrested defending our community? It would have been a shame if all of this fighting had gone down just so that Raising Action could sell tickets to their show. They owe us more than an apology. They owe us some dignity. Raising Action should show us that dignity and close its doors. I will not be returning to see any production at Raising Action. I hope others in the Gay community will do the same.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Chris:

    Hey! Hope you're well. I misplaced your business card after we met at Mosaic, but I need to get in touch with you. Could you please drop me an email? bkthorp@bellsouth.net.

    Grazie!
    - BKT

    ReplyDelete
  8. For the record, neither Goldyn or me made any requests for counter protests. I sent one letter that amounted to a press release to Westboro. I only hoped that a few articles would be written about the church's plans that would spark additional interest in the show. The show, not a counter protest, not violence, THE SHOW. Some are now playing the "what if" game about had the protest occurred. I know we in the theatre world love to think about the magic "if", but right now it is being used to drag me through the mud. This is simple. The nastiness being tossed around about me and David Goldyn has little to do with the facts surrounding the story and everything to do with personal vendettas.

    I notice there are a few anonymous posters on the New Times Blog, actually I assume they are actually the same person, who seem to have a particular problem with me as a person and performer. Why they say what they have to say and also identify themselves? If what they have to say is worthwhile and justified, why not let us know who they are? It is cowardly to post anonymously in this way.

    I see that some are calling for me to be, in effect, blacklisted in the South Florida theatre community because they are so outraged by a publicity stunt (and NO ONE in this business has ever pulled a publicity stunt).
    This over-reaction comes as the result of a few well connected people in the business who have it out for me, I'd mention who they are by name, but it would only serve to belabor the point. Anyone with even passing knowledge about this situation know exactly who those people are.

    I am done with this. I'm not reading it any more. I am too busy. I'm moving on, I have a new script to memorize and events to perform at. My career moves on, as does my undying loyalty and commitment to the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered community.

    Some have intimated that many in the GLBT community were fearful or anxious about the planned Westboro protest. While I understand that that may have been the case for some, and to those people I give my full and most sincere apology, my friends and contacts within the community weren't scared of Westboro or fearful. They were happy for the opportunity to confront them head on. Happy for the opportunity to freely express themselves and stand up and be proud of who they are. That was my experience with it.

    It is important to understand that the gay community is not a monolith. It is a community filled with individuals, and people as diverse in their opinions and reactions as any other group.

    There are some in the press who would seek to make it seem that I have offended the entire gay community, and some of those reporters aren't even members of our community. They seek to lump all GLBT people into one. I am a proud member of this vibrant GLBT community, and my friends within it and many others who I am not personal friends with have let me know that they see things quite differently. My gay friends shared the sentiment that it would be a good idea to use the hatemongers at Westboro to promote and help an entity of the gay community. We know now with hindsight being what it is, that this isn't how it turned out, mostly due to journalists who jumped to conclusions based on the word of Westboro, and were all too eager to publish unfounded lies from the people at the "church."

    So, I regret sending the press release, but I am no villain to the GLBT community. I am a member of it, I support it, I am proud to be a part of it, and I am sorry to any gay person who truly did experience any stress due to the protest.

    Maybe now the people covering this story will now move on to covering theatre in this community again, and move on from attacking me and David Goldyn. Surely there must be more going on that warrants more attention than this old story. Or maybe grudges overtake professional conduct.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Everybody makes mistakes; but those who won't learn from them are dangerous to be around, and that's what's going to make a director think twice about hiring you. Hate mail to the critics, goading hate-groups; you're a loose cannon, Larry. Worse, you're a loose cannon with a persecution complex.

    Nobody is out to "get" you. There are no "well connected" people conspiring to crush your "career." You just keep doing stupid things in a very big, very public way. Congratulations, you're an entertainer.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I think Larry DOES have a point. It's not ours to say if there was any ill intention on his part. We should probably lay off of him a bit on that point.

    However, he did make some really bad choices in the past few weeks, and so the South Florida theatre community came down on him. Them's the breaks when you choose to enter into this business. The press is not out to get him, they're just reporting the news.The news pieces on this issue were all pretty void of opinion. When they were egged on to give their opinion, they were clearly going to do so. That's how it works. No one is out to get anyone, but Larry was indded at fault for this whole thing. He's not an evil person, but he did start this sh*t storm. I don't know if anyone else had a part in the letter to Westboro, so I don't think it is fair of us to speculate. We DO know that Larry wrote the email, then kept quiet while the world came down on David Goldyn. It was Larry's responsibility to keep that from happening. The press is going to cover a story if it is there to be covered. THAT is how it works. You can't PROCLAIM that they are vindictive for doing so. That is a reality we ALL face in the theatre cmmunity. If you don't like it, get out of the business.

    But now that Larry HAS come forward, we can stop crucifying him for these actions. It was poor judgement. That's all. There are MANY other ways to promote a show as well as the gay and lesbian cause. I hope Larry understands that.

    P.S. I wouldn't worry about being "Blacklisted" in this community. There have been many, over the years, who believed they had been "Blacklisted" for their actions in the past. They all get second chances. None of us are perfect. Keep auditioning and let your work speak for itself.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Valid points all around, Antonio.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Wow. What drama here in S. Fla! I have been following this goofiness from the periphery and feel the need to comment on the tone in which 'The Entertainer' infects all of his correspondence and also express some other yet-to-be-mentioned points. Friends of mine altered their plans, bought full-price tickets, and made donations to this theater group solely to support it from what was reported as unfair targeting from a hate group. They endured what they described as an excrutiating production, but left feeling proud of being supportive. They now feel duped and embarrassed. I live 2 1/2 blocks from this theater and never knew it existed. Entertainer tells how he sat at home in Miami and emailed Westboro and refers to it as a publicity stunt. He sat in Miami and invited these hatemongers into MY neighborhood?! Were there assurances that there wouldn't be violence? Or arrests? Or ANY adverse effect on MY neighborhood? Or to my people, as I am a member of both the theatrical and gay communities. I agree with an earlier post that advances the thought that Goldyn was aware that the email was sent by someone connected to the production. He emailed Westboro to gloat, but didn't wonder how his obscure, nearly invisible, little theater was targeted? As far as Entertainer's perception that there is some faction "out to get" him, I will quote from the bible, "If you stand naked in Macy's window with a small penis, somone will hollar- Hey, look at the guy with the small penis."
    This guy's actions and attitude is an insult to the theatrical community and the gay community. And how dare he invite hatred into MY neighborhood.

    ReplyDelete
  13. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  14. A response to the Entertainer from the Michael person:
    You're going to talk to me about grandstanding and credibility?! My friends who attended your production were union actors who described the show as excruciating and agreed with Mary Damiano's assessment that you are totally without talent. As for your gay Moses remark- widen your vision, you myopic moron, your stunt had the potential to do damage to my theater friends, my gay friends, and me and my neighbors. Your level of delusion is astounding. Good luck with your career in South Florida.

    ReplyDelete
  15. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Do you read what you write before you publish it? You're putting a huge spotlight on that Macy's window. Why are your responses regarding your irresponsible behavior overshadowed by defense of your lack of talent. I didn't see (or care about) your performance, and with the windows open, I didn't smell it so I have no firsthand opinion. I have nothing against you because you suck. I know plenty of actors who suck. It's OK- go suck. And it doesn't surprise me that there are producers who hire you- I've probably squirmed through some of their productions. This is all about your poor judgement and irresponsible actions and nothing to do with your apparent lack of talent.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Larry,
    I thought you were "done with this"?
    Why do you keep digging yourself in deeper and deeper? Do you really not realize the damage you've done to your "career"?
    Yes, I know, you are a working actor. You do this for a living. You stay booked solid. And your need to endlessly repeat that just proves what we all know: You are a sad, pathetic, insecure man.
    Your letter to Mary was repulsive. Your "apology letter" was a joke.
    Maybe now is the time for you to sit down and give it a rest.
    Are you capable of that, Larry?

    By the way, I've seen you audition, and I've seen your resume... let's not get too cocky.

    ReplyDelete
  18. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Well, I just checked it out on Al Gore's internets. 'Dewey defeats Truman' was already taken.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Larry I have looked at your resume. We can go down your list of credits and discuss them one by one if you like. But lets not go there. Let us talk about what is not on your resume. What is not on there are theatres like Naked Stage, The Promethean Theatre, Mad Cat, Gable Stage, Alliance Theatre, New Theatre, Florida Stage or any other legitimate theatre that puts on GOOD work. Your biggest credit is the children's Theatre at Actor's Playhouse. That's not good.
    I doubt that the theatres that I have mentioned will cast you in light of the damage your actions have caused.
    You see Larry, before you did such a stupid thing, the theatre community down here had little knowledge of who Larry Fields was. And that was a good thing. You did not bring any baggage into your auditions with you. Now we know who you are and what damage you are capable of.
    You are an actor who does not know his place. Actors DO NOT send out press releases. Actors DO NOT write incendiary letters to critics(no matter how wrong they are about you in their review). For the record, I think Mary Damiano was wrong in mentioning your appearance in her review. You should have just let her look bad. By replying to her remarks the way that you did, you put the light on you and off of her bad review.
    I know that people are coming down on you in a harsh way, but that is only because we feel duped by you. I honestly do not know if you can overcome this. I do not know if Raising Action can overcome this. The damage you have done to that theatre's credibility is not what I would want to happen to mine. How can I be sure that you will not do these same things if I was to cast you in a show. I can't take that chance. So I will tell you face to face (via the internet) what the rest of the theatre community has been saying behind the scenes - I will not be casting you in any of the shows I direct. That is not to say that I do not wish you well. I do. My wish for you is that you learn something from this mess that you have caused. My wish for the few directors who do cast you is that they have the strength to keep you from hurting their productions. I am sure that I will see you at auditions. Until then remember this- humility and true contrition go a long way in helping people heal from any wrong doing.

    ReplyDelete
  21. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  22. I have an idea. How about if we all go get a life? Aren't there audition pieces we should be rehearsing, or pilates classes we should be taking? Vocal workshops? Yoga? ANYTHING????? Has the South Florida Theatre Community really dried up so much in this recession that we have nothing better to do than worry about what Larry is doing today? Especially when so many of you have made your negative feelings about Larry abundantly clear? Why let it get to you? Most of you don't even know the kid, so why worry about mistakes he is making? I must say I am perplexed by the media coverage of all of this bullshit. And that is what it is boys and girls. Bullshit.

    I fully intend to take up juggling after hitting the "post my comment" button. I encourage all of you to go develop a new skill, or perfect an old one. Just let this sleeping dog lie. Go back to your lives, and make some good theatre to keep everyone employed and entertained so that we don't have to rely on Larry to do it for us.

    -Elizabeth

    ReplyDelete
  23. Mary Damiano and the New Times blog took the word of Fred Phelps and Westboro Baptist Church over the word of one of its own

    Actually, Larry, that's completely untrue. Mary Damiano DID take Mr. Goldyn at his word. It's obvious when you read her original article, and I've pointed it out at every opportunity. The New Times retracted its story.

    No one, not even me, has launched a smear campaign. These events actually happened as described. You did this, not me. That's not "smearing." That's "reporting." You did something stupid, and we reported it.

    The ire you're feeling isn't mine. It isn't Mary Damiano's. I doubt that it's Brandon's, either. The comments you are objecting to are coming from professional actors - and one director - in our community. They come from your neighbors.

    Larry, you've been ignoring a lot of very good advice in the last month. Heed me now: exit the spotlight, and say no more. You've painted yourself into a corner, and now you're adding a third coat.

    As Ken has tried to point out, your scene is done. Go home.

    ReplyDelete
  24. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete