Q: How DO I Choose My Shows? - Daniel Curiotto

Sometimes choosing a show can be difficult. Either you don't know what kind of show you are looking for, what kind of mood you want, or even the venue you want. Or maybe you've never been before and just want to know a good starting point. Well I figured I would show you how I choose my shows to kind of aid your process. For me the whole thing can be broken up into 2 key aspects:

1. Know what you like.

For me this step could be as simple as seeing words that grab my attention. If the title has something like robot, time travel, a really weird made up word, anything 80's related, or a title like "The (Blank)", odds are I'm going to look into it (Skeletons are also a good word, but they're rarely used so it's a bit disappointing). This could also be a little bit more intelligent of a choice and can be refined into genres, if you like. For me I tend to magnetize towards the comedy or musical type of show, but I do occasionally enjoy a good drama now and then. Weirdly enough, I have gotten into this weird groove of seeing a bunch of vaguely Communist Russia themed shows. Not really sure what that says about me as a person.

Another big criteria I search for is a venue that I have been to many times and enjoy every time I go. My favorite theater is Under St. Mark's, not only because it's in one of my favorite parts of the city and I can go to Papaya King before and get a dollar slice after, but because it hosts some of favorite shows. Some of the funniest and most heartrending experiences I've had have taken place in that magical little basement. A very close runner up is any show that takes place in a weird location. I've been in church basements, parking lots, and obscure slightly hidden buildings. Basically the weirder it gets the more I'll be into it. You could probably say "this show takes place in an old broken down house where a murderer may or my not still be on the premises" and I'll probably be the first one in there.

2. What are you feeling?

Your mood and things going on in your life can be a huge inspiration. If I'm going through a lot and I'm kind of in a bummed out place, I like to see a show that matches the mood. The way I see it, it can deepen my mood so that I really feel it, which is something I love.  Whenever I feel something, I want to really feel it. The other option is that it could put my problems into perspective, show me that maybe things aren't too bad. The same goes for a good mood. If I'm feeling good and I want to keep the good times rolling, I will watch the funniest most ridiculous stuff I can find. There are the times that I will deviate from this formula though. Sometimes if I'm in a bad place I'll go to something that will take my mind off it and let me mellow out for a while. Consequently, if I notice that I've been too happy lately and I need to put myself in place I'll go see some depressing show that will make me hate everything. It's all about balance, people.

That being said, there are the times where it's fun to just pick completely randomly. Just say "what the hell", don't even read about it and just show up. You might get into some real weird shit, but that's the thrill of it.