Happy Belated Birthday to Clive Barnes

A wonderful friend found this post on Facebook about Clive on his Birthday.
Many thanks to Chip Deffaa for the kind words and remembrance!
Today was the birthday of noted theater and dance critic Clive Barnes. He was a valued friend and colleague–a bright, kind, decent man, who taught me a lot. For 18 years, I was proud to share pages in The New York Post entertainment section with him. (I think my favorite Clive Barnes review was also his most succinct. He had to review a dreadful play titled “Cupboard.” His entire review consisted of one word: “Bare.”) He was the senior critic of both theater and dance at The Post. He’d previously reviewed theater and dance for The New York Times; it was a huge coup for The Post when Barnes was “stolen” away from The Times. He was passionate about theater and dance; he wrote biographies of Tennessee Williams and Rudolph Nureyev, as well as such books about dance as “American Ballet Theatre: A 25 Year Retrospective” (with Elizabeth Kaye), “Masters of Movement: Portraits of America’s Great Choreographers” (with Rose Eichenbaum), “Ballet Here and Now,” and “Dance Scene USA,” among others. He was ambivalent about television. He was the first to admit there were some superb actors working in TV. But he said of TV: “It is the first truly democratic culture, the first culture available to everyone and entirely governed by what the people want. The most terrifying thing is what people do want.” He made some enemies, of course, in his long career as a critic; that’s par for the course. But my experiences with him were terrific. And he was generous. An appreciative tip of my hat to the late Clive Barnes–he succumbed to cancer six years ago–on what would have been his birthday.
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