The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus


Call for more adult audience

In the world of theater the relationship between the audience and the actors is a tricky one.

Some productions ask the audience to remain behind the fourth wall, some encourage slightly more participation, but there is one request that you will always hear before the performance begins: “Please do not text message during the performance.”

It’s just plain rude. You know that friend that’s always looking down at their phone?

You could be telling a brilliant story with the greatest punch line, but they won’t hear it because they’re texting someone who isn’t there.

But it’s even worse than that, because the actors in the show aren’t just pursuing a hobby and it’s not just their job, it’s their heart and soul.

I totally understand the need to feel constantly connected; I send plenty of text messages, make plenty of phone calls and constantly check my Facebook. So don’t think that I’m passing aloof judgment, I get it, but I am a firm believer in respecting one another’s livelihoods.

Perhaps this is simply because it is a college campus, but texting during a Meadows show is a more prevalent problem than anywhere else that I’ve ever been, but opening night of “You Never Can Tell” presented a entirely new monster.

Students were talking audibly during the second half of the production.

So I am here to remind those of you who are required to attend plays for classes, and perhaps might not enjoy theater as a recreational form of entertainment: this isn’t the movies and even if it were you would still receive glares and shushes.

Your fellow students have spent months in rehearsal and countless hours memorizing lines in order to put on the show that you are watching.

That specific Wednesday night, those audience members were not only disrespecting the actors in the play, they were limiting the experience for other members of the audience, which happened to include several theater critics and notable members of the professional theater world.

If you aren’t enjoying a production it is your prerogative to exit the theater or leave at intermission. And maybe you’re required to attend the production for class, but you should be grateful that you’re attending a school with such high-quality work.

In the same way that the theater students are striving for professional quality theater, you should hold yourself to the standard of professional behavior. Be a grown-up audience.

Lauren Smart is a senior journalism and English double major, as well as the Arts & Entertainment Editor for The Daily Campus. She can be reached at [email protected].

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