Guardian Masterclass: Reinventing the critic with Lyn Gardner, Claire Armitstead and Ben Walters
Everyone's a critic. No news there, of course, though the digital age has made it harder than ever for professional reviewers to distinguish themselves from the multitude of online voices. What, then, can the expert critic offer that the dabbler cannot?
In this evening Masterclass, critical practitioners – including the Guardian's Literary Editor Claire Armitstead, renowned theatre critic Lyn Gardner and Time Out's Cabaret Editor and film critic Ben Walters – will discuss the state of criticism today, as well as a unique insight into the nuts and bolts of the job and the distinctive requirements of individual fields.
Subjects covered will include the process of writing a review, the unexpected pleasures and secret frustrations of the job, advice to those seeking to become critics – and whether the professionals are ever wrong.
Lyn Gardner has been going to the theatre regularly since early infancy. She studied Drama and English at Kent University. She was a founder member of the City Limits cooperative where she edited the theatre section, before joining the Guardian.
Claire Armitstead is the Guardian's literary editor. She was previously arts editor, having worked as a theatre critic for the Ham & High, the Financial Times and the Guardian. As a published author,she has contributed essays to New Performance (Macmillan, 1994) and Women: A Cultural Review (Oxford University Press, 1996). She makes regular appearances on radio and television as a cultural commentator on literature and the arts
In 15 years of professional criticism, Ben Walters has covered film,TV, radio, theatre, books, art and comedy. Among numerous contributions to the Guardian, he has written G2 and Guide cover stories on the new folk cinema and political graffiti in New York, as well as a weekly column on New York film culture during his time living there. Ben has also contributed regularly to Time Out, Sight & Sound, Film Quarterly and various BBC programmes, as well as writing a critical biography of Orson Welles and BFI Classics books on The Big Lebowski and The Office. He is Time Out London's cabaret editor and also programmes events and makes films.
Dates: Thursday 13 September 2012
Location: The Guardian, 90 York Way, King's Cross, London, N1 9GU
Price: £39 (inclusive of VAT, booking fees and refreshments)
Maximum class size: 100
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