UPDATE: Welcome, Guardian UK readers. I suppose I should thank Chris for the traffic, but I don't actually think the post he wrote has much to do with what I actually wrote, so I hope you take the time time to read it below. I also wrote a response to Chris' post here that hopefully clarifies what I was trying to do here. Enjoy your stay on the USS Parabasis, hope to see you all back and in the comments soon!
Having sat through (with some unfortunate regularity) smug pontifications from people who work in countries with heavy government arts subsidies, there's a part of me (a very petty part) that's enjoying the freak out about coming funding cuts at the Guardian Online. I don't want to expand on this point that much, because like I said, I recognize that it is ugly and I would much rather the US subsidized like the Brits instead of vice versa. But still, pretty much every time I've been at a conference or in a fellowship group or whatever that involves European directors (particularly ones my age) there's always a moment when one of them enters into a Big Speech About How Conservative and Dull American Theatre Is. The grounds on which it is criticized generally have something to do with American directors actually caring about telling a vaguely similar story to that laid out in the script, or caring about narrative at all, or being worried about boring their audience, or really worrying about what the audience might think about anything rather than giving them a Bold Experience That They'll Thank You For Later, generally free of such tedious things as narrative or focus or non-arbitrary visual choices.
Anyway, this is small-minded of me, but I think the silver lining on the funding cut cloud is that at least theatre artists in other countries might have some level of understanding/sympathy for what their cousins across the pond are doing.