About Me

My photo
Matthew Freeman is a Brooklyn based playwright with a BFA from Emerson College. His plays include THE DEATH OF KING ARTHUR, REASONS FOR MOVING, THE GREAT ESCAPE, THE AMERICANS, THE WHITE SWALLOW, AN INTERVIEW WITH THE AUTHOR, THE MOST WONDERFUL LOVE, WHEN IS A CLOCK, GLEE CLUB, THAT OLD SOFT SHOE and BRANDYWINE DISTILLERY FIRE. He served as Assistant Producer and Senior Writer for the live webcast from Times Square on New Year's Eve 2010-2012. As a freelance writer, he has contributed to Gamespy, Premiere, Complex Magazine, Maxim Online, and MTV Magazine. His plays have been published by Playscripts, Inc., New York Theatre Experience, and Samuel French.

Thursday, March 11, 2010


Dirty word, I know. But look at this:

That is DISNEY, folks.

Now look at this.

That ad isn't even like...all that great. It's just a car commercial.

Why are we so very, very bad at this? I mean, I don't even mean we need to spend millions and hire David Fincher to direct our commercials.

Anyone have an example of theater or arts companies that are using viral video or other types of commercials that seem to actually work? And can someone explain to me why we are, by and large, so incredibly awful at using technology (video!) that's not even, ya know, new?


Deaf Indian Muslim Anarchist! said...

YES. Look up Theatre Royal Court on youtube, they have awesome videos to promote ENRON and JERUSALEM which were smash hits at Royal Court, both have gotten a West End transfer. the trailers are really well done, very edgy, cool, not at all cheesy or lame.


Deaf Indian Muslim Anarchist! said...

this one is my favourite.


Monica Reida said...

At first the Mary Poppins ad reminded me of the horror movie edit of the trailer that is floating around on YouTube. Which isn't good.

I don't think that a lot of ads for theater do much other than show clips from the play. I did see a trailer for a community theater production of The Producers that managed to time the clips from the play very well to the music. Another fairly good trailer is of a production of an adaptation of The Man Who Was Thursday that was done in Chicago. But both were cheaply made and didn't air on TV.

(If I find links, I'll post them)

Maybe some theaters are trying too hard? (See: The Mary Poppins ad. Also, Mary Poppins is now a hit?)

michaelsaas said...

I agree theatre artists could do tremendously better than they currently are at marketing themselves online (and offline too for that matter).

My shining example is the [Title of Show] Youtube page http://www.youtube.com/user/titleofshow and their own website http://www.titleofshow.com

Very clever stuff, it made me a huge fan of the show before seeing it or knowing anything about it.

Seano said...

[title of show] is a great example of doing it very well. For instance, if you look on their "for fans" page it has their banner ads. Very funny, just the cast from the show riffing about press, the show, each other. And being very funny about it all. That's the kind of thing that makes people want to see your show without just being scenes from the show. And that's what advertising should be in its simplest form. Make people want your product. After seeing the site I'm sorry I missed the show. That being said, I LOVED Glee Club by Matt Freeman playing at the Access Theatre through April 3rd. Go to bluecoyote.org for tickets and show times.

Malachy Walsh said...

Funnily enough the Mary Poppins piece has an actual idea buried in it that could get someone to go see the show. When the guy says I thought I was going to be an adult at a kids show but I went and I felt like a kid, well, we have an actual selling idea because it is not about the specifics of the show, but the benefit of going.

However, the ad is not creative and that concept is buried.

There's a reason good ad agencies are good and advertising is hard to get into.

It is not easy to do well in any case.