It seems that “in this economy” (we’re going to start putting that in quotes from now on. Apparently it’s now a requisite lead to any cultural news story), theatre-goers are looking for more perks on Broadway than just an overpriced souvenir program to take home at the end of the night. So why not get them sloshed? Perhaps in the spirit of St. Patrick’s Day (erm, or not), producers of Rock of Ages have announced that they’re starting to serve drinks to patrons during the show. We can foresee just a few problems with this.
First of all, we can only imagine that these drinks will be incredibly overpriced. If you’re paying an arm and a leg for the tickets, you’ll probably have to shill out another appendage for a seabreeze. Second, are you familiar with this show, Rock of Ages? We weren’t, but quickly found out why: It’s basically a two-hour karaoke fest of hits by Bon Jovi, White Snake, and Foreigner — starring American Idol-almost Constantine Maroulis. Dismissing for a moment why anyone would go to this when they can hear all of these tunes in any dive bar, alcohol, we have a feeling, would only encourage raucous audience sing-alongs. Which are almost always better left for dive bars. Karaoke bars, maybe.
Don’t get us wrong: we’re happy to incorporate alcohol into plenty of usually sober endeavors: Shamrock Shakes, for example. Or, we really appreciated the full bars we found in London cinemas. And, for other shows — Cabaret comes to mind — it might actually enhance the show to have table service during the production. But we kind of already want to kill the drunk kids slurring into the mic over a Journey song at our local’s Rock ‘n Roll karaoke night. Why would we pay good, hard-earned money — “in this economy,” especially — to be trapped in a theater with over 100 of them?