Just a short post. Yesterday, I asked what would happen to Irish theatre criticism now that Irish Theatre Magazine has suspended publication. I’ve had a lot of interesting responses to that post. There is one I wanted to come back to, however. One of the comments following the blog post suggested that ITM is usually very active around the time of the Dublin Theatre Festival and the Fringe – but estimated that during the rest of the year the website published only “10 to 15” reviews last year.
That’s a view I’ve heard expressed by quite a number of people.
I responded by saying that the magazine had published “at least” 130 reviews last year and the year before.
Here are the actual figures.
The number of non-Fringe/DTF reviews published every year since 2009:
When we add DTF/Fringe reviews, we get the following:
2013 47 Fringe Reviews and 10 DTF, which would bring the total to 223
2012 58 Fringe and 11 DTF which would bring total to 228
I don’t have figures for years before 2013, but they aren’t far off the totals above.
So this shows that ITM was covering more than 200 shows a year – which, with some gaps, probably meant that they covered every show produced in Ireland, north and south, as well as some Irish shows produced abroad. I think there is a separate issue about why some people were unaware of the breadth of coverage – and this goes back to my comments yesterday about the need for websites now to have full-time social media people who can drive traffic.
Again, facing towards the future, it’s worth bearing these figures in mind, since they show what would be required of any organisation that sought to review (or see) everything in Ireland.