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TheGerbil

Editorial about supporting the arts

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http://pittsburgh.bizjournals.com/pittsbur.../17/focus5.html

This is an interesting piece from the Business Times. It basically says young people in Pittsburgh need to support the arts more and realize that there's more to the city than football. I totally agree with that sentiment, but as a young Pittsburgher I was rather annoyed at the tone of this piece. The writer seemed to be implying that all the young people in town are sitting on the rear-ends watching sports all day and couldn't give a sh*t about the arts. In my personal experience, young people here care a lot about the arts. Maybe the audience at the symphony is mostly middle-aged and up, but all the grass-roots stuff in town seems to be done by young people and supported by young people.

I DO want the city to be known more for art and less for sports. But I don't agree at all that it's the young people in town who are the problem.

What do you all think?

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^^some good pts. in the article G, but I'm not so sure we should work at running away from our sports pathos here, in an era of Atkins, SuperSize Me (the star of the show was from nearby WV) and childhood obesity and diabetes having a metro that somehow produces gold medal winning, super bowl MVP, baseball hall-of-famer, basketball world record holders and the list goes on and on. Check out Wikipedia's People from Pittsburgh page (I was the main contributor). I think the arts and music should be encouraged in the metroplex, but given how salt, fat and sugar consumption is up 300% since the 1970's Pittsburgh being a beacon of world class atheletes in the purist sense is an untapped resource that makes us a very very unique destination for the fat and disease flooded sunbelt cities.

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Oh sure, I would never want to run away from our sports heritage. But I do think there is a little too much emphasis on the Steelers. I don't like that our football team is often the first thing people mention if you ask what they love about Pittsburgh. And I want outsiders to think of Pittsburgh when they think of us, not the Steelers, if you know what I mean.

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Agreed on that, the overweight, middleaged beer chugger that had the heart attack during the AFC Divisional playoff this past season makes me feel that the city is becoming more of a spectator community then a participatory one, like we used to be.

I hope for a world center in developing the skills and talents that the local gene pool has produced before (from Warhol and Stein to Montana and Griffey). But your right G, more emphasis could be put on the arts, it was sad that some of our most talented had to LEAVE to really develop their skills, we have come a long way since then in the arts but it still shouldn't be that tough to make it hear if you have that kind of talent.

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I think it depends on what form of art you do. Seems like visual artists do well here, and actually have a much better chance of getting attention than if they went to a place like New York. But if you want to be an actor for instance, there are way more opportunities in NY or LA. This is more because those places are centers for film making, though. People from all over go to those cities when they want to get into acting. Same goes for stand-up comedy, and to some extent music.

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Speaking of film Pittsburgh has continued to be a relatively warm production and filming area (just shot that pilot for the "Thief" or whatever with that Amy Smart girl here) The Guardian, Sudden Death, Silence of the Lambs, Hope & Gloria, 10th and Wolf etc. etc.

I would like Hollywood to come calling more and more, similar to what you see in those Law & Order shows, Broadway and commercial actors get side gigs playing guest spots in them since they are based out of NYC. Pittsburgh could do that to a degree.

My big question is that a few years back there was talk of having a full fledged film studio (state of the art) and being the only one between NY and LA (or was it NY and Chicago?) on Craig Street in Oakland. Never heard any updates on that, a development such as that would surely attract double what we get from Hollywood now. Give Pittsburgh based Thespians an additional outlet to "make it".

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I remember that, and would love to see something come of it. We can only hope that it's quietly progressing behind the scenes.

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