The Fairy Princess hates when things go down over a Holiday weekend – in this case, LABOR DAY.
Like, CAN WE NOT HAVE ONE DAMN HOLIDAY WHERE SHE DOES NOT HAVE TO OPEN UP TWITTER OR SOMETHING AND SEE PEOPLE OVERTLY PRACTICING RACISM IN THE CREATIVE ARTS?
Vera, your thoughts?
This will be quick, because TFP wants to take her kid to the Children’s Museum…but here it goes – recently the show that has likely run the longest in San Francisco – a city known for it’s diversity and open minded attitude – Beach Blanket Babylon – posted a casting notice on their website that was, let’s face it, pretty awful.
They have taken it down, but here is a screen shot:
TFP was thinking lots of thoughts….
She tweeted them – hey, it was a HOLIDAY WEEKEND!!!!!
There was also an article by YOMYOMF
and Tweets sent by a number of API Activists, like for example, the written word warrior, Jeff Yang…
Thus after much furious social media backlash, Beach Blanket Babylon has taken down their casting notice and apologized.
Here’s the thing – ok fine, all well and good you apologized but there are a few salient points:
- How long was that casting notice up there, and how badly did it make actors who wanted to audition, who were not Caucasian feel?
- Never crossed anyone’s mind that stating preference by skin tone is wrong? Your Graphic Designer said nothing? Your Web Person? Artistic Director? You find nothing wrong with asking the “magical People of Color’ to be twenty times better just to get your notice? NO ONE THOUGHT THIS WAS SUSPECT?
- Though BBB is not an AEA house, there is what we call in the performing arts – and in every other business (Looking at you, Wells Fargo) – a thing called ‘Standards and Practices‘ – meaning, there is a need to adhere to the current industry standard of advertising for roles.
Yes, if the character is African American, or Asian, or Latina, you may say that the character has that background – but you may not- because after all, AEA is a Union, (remember it was Labor Day ) Unions are not allowed to practice discrimination based on race or religion, disability, or gender – and as AEA sets the Industry standard for theater – BBB should adhere to that example.
Been running over 40 years? It’s time to join the world of 2016.
Also, where are the ASIAN AMERICANS IN THE CAST?
In SAN FRANCISCO? Seriously, what is the implication here – you cover Pop Culture and APIS are not a part of it?
Have you tuned in on ABC at all?
FRESH OFF THE BOAT? DR. KEN?
Ring any bells?
Here is the other thing that has TFP scratching her head – there are 5 PoC in the current cast of BBB – how the heck do you think this whole thing makes them feel?
Presumably management likes them, presumably they auditioned and felt great about getting cast..how do you think hearing that one of the reasons they got their job is because they could ‘pass’ is going to make them feel?
Let’s just keep it real for a second, BBB – yes, you apologized – but you did not actually think about what you did – you knee jerk apologized and you are going to try and turn it around on all the folks who read it and say yes, you didn’t realize, and you were trying to be funny.
You were trying to be funny about basing qualifications on skin tone, and not on talent.
You were trying to be funny about racism practiced openly and without shame.
What you did was invoke the worst kind of privilege – the kind where the Creative people judge Performers of Color based on looks FIRST, before their talent will be considered.
TFP does not buy this fauxpology.
The show started in 1974, if you have not changed your attitudes to Performers of Color and Ability since then, perhaps it is time to leave the beach?
San Francisco, the dynamic city in which you live – in which you probably take a walk through Chinatown regularly, order out Indian Food, go down and sample chocolate brought to you by Italian Immigrants, the city that fought so hard for LGBT rights…San Fran does not need this sh*t.
San Francisco is better than what you did with your casting notice.
You took it down, but did you learn anything?
TFP hopes so, she really hopes so.
Because…Beach Blanket Babylon also has a cast running in London.
So what is going on across the pond? Same thing?
For abject stupidity and racism written down where everyone could see it – TFP fines Beach Blanket Babylon 50 whacks with the wand – grow up and realize that your sense of humor is dated. We don’t tell Performers of Color that they have to enter through the back door and they need to use separate bathrooms in 2016 – or have you not checked out the winners at The TONYS this past year?
Check yourself before you wreck yourself, BBB – because you are on your way to making yourselves obsolete.