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The Monday Roundup
by Jerome Weeks 12 Mar 2012

One reason Lysistrata Jones failed in New York, Maxwell Anderson brings in a colleague to join him at the DMA, the Kimbell is compared to the Getty — and more in this morning’s roundup.

CTA TBD

WHY DID LYSISTRATA JONES FAIL ON BROADWAY? The basketball musical, which began at the Dallas Theater Center, got strong reviews when it first played New York in an off-Broadway gym. But on Broadway, it flopped after only two months. No, it wasn’t because New Yorkers, like me, thought it was fun but utterly lightweight. The spirited little show probably should have moved to a decent-sized off-Broadway house and stayed. The problem: No place to go. While the non-profits are doing well, there are far fewer commercial off-Broadway houses these days.

KIMBELL OR GETTY? According to the LATimes, whenever word gets out that an American museum has made “a stellar purchase,” that question pops up. Both museums have acquisition budgets that most can only fantasize about. The comparison comes in a lengthy feature about what the Getty might expect under Timothy Potts, the former Kimbell director who’s taking charge of the Getty. Although the two institutions differ greatly in size, “painting for painting, the Kimbell is superior,” Christopher Knight writes, while the Getty shines in its antiquities. But Potts’ purchases at the Kimbell include  “an important Greek vase, an alabaster Sumerian statuette and a Roman marble torso” whose ownership were all questioned. Knight concludes with a thought-provoking suggestion for collegiality amongst LA’s museums. Would Fort Worth museums ever try anything similar?

ARTS FINANCING AND THE FIRE DEPARTMENT? What do they have in common? In Irving, they’ve both become heated city-council campaign issues, says the Dallas Morning News (pay wall). The firefighters’ association is at odds with the fire chief, while a proposed Irving entertainment center has a controversial financing plan. The center’s backers are looking for a public bond package approval from the council — only days before the May 12 election. Accusations of favoritism and property-tax increases are flying, as are calls for recall petition drives.

YOU GOTTA HAVE FRIENDS. Maxwell Anderson started in January as the Dallas Museum of Art’s new executive director. And last week he made his first major hire: Robert Stein, the former deputy director of research and technology at the Indianapolis Museum of Art — which is what Anderson ran before he came to Dallas. Stein helped Anderson make the IMA a leader in technological innovation, and that’s the plan for him here, heading up the DMA’s “financial, education, conservation, technological, web and operational activities.”

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