Patti LuPone rips into ‘dumbed down’ Broadway audiences — but says she isn’t retiring
Patti LuPone isn’t done with Broadway after all — even though she thinks the audiences have been “dumbed down.”
A day after the 73-year-old three-time Tony winner tweeted she gave up her Actors’ Equity card, LuPone clarified that she is not retiring from theater work.
“I just gave up my equity card, but that doesn’t mean that I can’t perform on stage,” LuPone told Variety at Netflix’s “The School for Good and Evil” premiere Tuesday. “It’s 50 years that I’ve been a member of Actors’ Equity, and I think I need a break from the stage.”
Though she is no longer a member of the labor union, LuPone said there are provisions that allow her to make guest appearances on stage. Her days as Broadway lead, however, appear to be over for now — something she doesn’t seem too upset about.
“Broadway has also changed considerably,” LuPone said. “I think we’ve spent — not we, but whoever’s in charge of, whatever — has actively dumbed down the audience. And so the attention span of the majority of the audience, I think, is much less than it was in the past, and I don’t think plays are going to have long lives on Broadway — I feel as though it’s turning into Disneyland, a circus and Las Vegas.”
“There’s still very intelligent audiences that support the theater, but the ticket price is outrageous,” she continued. “There’s so many obstacles that prevent theater from being the tool it should be in society, which is an education.”
LuPone also called Broadway a “circus” in Monday’s tweet. The sassy, foul-mouthed stage star has never been one to shy away from saying what she’s thinking.
She’s built a reputation as a diva throughout her career, calling out audience members and threatening to quit shows, as well as suing a show’s composer.