.... my 2 cents ....
musings on marketing, media, public relations....and life,
by David Reich
Reich Communications, Inc.
Reich Communications, Inc. is a boutique public relations agency in New York City offering full service in a variety of areas, with specializations in business-to-business; advertising, marketing and media firms; transportation safety; non-profits, and select consumer products and services.
For more info, call us at (212) 573-6000, email to david@reichcommunications or text to 914-325-9997.
We are located at 228 East 45th Street, Suite 11-South, New York City 10017
I normally don't do reviews of films or shows here, but a Broadway show we saw the other night is worthy of mention.
Amazing Grace, which opened a week ago, didn't get great reviews and the dismal box office numbers in its first week since opening might mark this show for an early demise.
That would be a shame, since we thought Amazing Grace is a good show, well-performed.
The writers' notes in the Playbill say the show is based on a true story, although some characters and timelines have been altered or combined for the sake of storytelling. It's the story of John Newton, an Englishman who in 1772 wrote the iconic song Amazing Grace. (I had always assumed it was an old spiritual repurposed as a folksong by Judy Collins or Joan Baez.)
Newton, so the story goes, was the son of a British slave trader who, after a stint as a sailor to escape his domineering father, returns and tries to prove himself by getting into the slave business himself.
Set in 1744 and onward, the show doesn't whitewash the inhumanity and brutality of slavery. It has scenes that show the cruelty. A key character is Newton's childhood girlfriend, who joins the abolitionist movement. And the show let's us see special relationships between master and slave, especially between whites raised by slaves who acted in many ways like teachers and parents. It also shows how quickly a lifelong bond like that can be severed, when Newton sold off his friend and constant companion Thomas, who after all was still Newton's slave.
After nearly perishing out at sea on a slave ship, Newton sees the error of his ways and sets out to make things right, including a cross-ocean search for his old friend Thomas.
It's a great story that makes for good theater. Although not memorable, the music is good and there are some outstanding acting and musical performances by Newton (Josh Young), Thomas (Chuck Cooper) and an African princess (Harriett D. Foy) who becomes Newton's partner by enslaving her own people.
I recommend it, but you may have to get tickets quickly before the mediocre reviews force it to close.
Amazing Grace is playing at the Nederlander Theater.
Journalists being manipulated by political candidates and elected officials is nothing new. The term "pack journalism," in fact, goes way back to the early 1970s when Timothy Crouse published "The Boys on the Bus" in 1973, detailing the reporters covering the most recent Presidential campaign. Hunter S. Thompson touched on it the year before in his "Fear & Loathing on the Campaign Trail."
I've come to expect the tabloids and the "Access Hollywood"-type gossip shows to pander the to the exploits of crazy wannabe politicians. Look at all the coverage Sarah Palin got a few years ago. As unqualified as she may have been for the VP job, she at least had some experience as a governor. But Trump... come on.
I was disappointed to see his planned visit to the U.S.-Mexico border in Texas as one of the lead stories on today's CBS This Morning, the one morning news show that touts "real news." This is just another campaign stop for a loud-mouthed candidate, but even CBS News is giving it coverage (and thus credibility) over what so many of the other candidates are doing and saying.
It's truly a shame that the media are letting one kooky candidate hijack the campaigns and important discussions of real issues by other real candidates.
Even conservative Rupert Murdoch has said he doesn't like Trump's style and self-aggrandizement. But he's not above using his name and antics to sell papers and get ratings on his TV stations.
I thought some of the other major media were above that, but hysterics get eyeballs on the page and on the screen... and that translates to money.
If I were advising any of the other candidates, I'd say to simply ignore the ranting and taunting of the crazy rich New Yorker and stick to the issues and platforms that you've identified as important. Don't get drawn into the fray, because it only validates and brings more exposure to the crazy one.