Congratulations to Brian Parks, who has been named senior editor in charge of the theatre section of NY's Village Voice newspaper. Parks has long written theatre reviews for the Voice, and he's penned the plays Vomit and Roses and Wolverine Dream (last year both played at the Fringe Festival under the title "Americana Absurdum").
Previous theatre editor Ross Wetzsteon died, Feb. 19, of complications resulting from pneumonia. His memorial service was held at Manhattan Theatre Club Apr. 13.
Voice critic Randy Gener said of Parks (Apr. 23), "He's a marvelous critic who's done some very good work at the Voice for a long time... It's a terrific passing of the torch."
The new editor received a B.A. from Brown University in American Civilization. He'd been working at the Voice for seven and a half years -- his most recent position being senior editor in features and sports -- before taking a job at New York Magazine only a few months ago. "Now I'm back," he told Playbill On-Line (Apr. 23).
Parks, 35, went on to praise his predecessor: "Ross was my mentor here. He gave me, like many people, their first crack at appearing in the paper. I'm hugely indebted to him. And he was one of the nicest men I've ever met. If I can be half the editor Ross was I'll be very happy." It's still early for Parks to formulate plans for the theatre section's future, but he did say he was solidly in the Voice tradition of championing Off, Off-Off, performance art and experimental theatre. "I think we have a special and historic mission to promote the other theatre communities. Particularly in these times, when the cost is getting more and more expensive to try and produce good art."
-- By David Lefkowitz