About Us

Theater Talk was the weekly interview/discussion television series, focusing on the world of the stage. It aired on PBS station, Thirteen WNET in New York City from 1996 to 2018 It was also syndicated from 2008-2018 on public television stations around the country both on TV and online. The guests included significant actors, writers, composers, directors, critics and others who contributed to the theater in New York, on Broadway and beyond.

Theater Talk won New York Emmy Awards in 2017 and 2019 for Best Interview/Discussion Series.


Theater Talk History

The weekly series premiered in 1993 under the title Inside Broadway on the Manhattan Neighborhood Network. It was co-created by journalist Michael Riedel, artist /producer Susan Haskins-Doloff and actor/director Stephen Ahern. Haskins and Riedel co-hosted.

The series moved in 1996 to Thirteen WNET, New York City’s PBS station with Haskins and Riedel continuing to co-host. It was renamed Theater Talk. The first show was an interview with John Kander & Fred Ebb, composer/lyricists of the musical Chicago, and critic Martin Gottfried. Ahern stepped down as Managing Director and was replaced by Steve Doloff. Haskins became Executive Producer.

In 1998, Theater Talk moved the production to the studio of CUNY TV.

Theater Talk expanded in 1999 to a second PBS station, WGBH in Boston.

Theater Talk in partnership with CUNY TV began its national syndication in 2008 to PBS and other public TV stations all around USA.

Theater Talk won the NY Emmy Award in 2017 for Best Interview/Discussion program.

Michael Riedel left Theater Talk in May of 2017 and was replaced by a new team of co-hosts with Susan (now, Haskins-Doloff), including journalists Jesse Green, Elisabeth Vincentelli and Jason Zinoman of The New York Times, Adam Feldman of TimeOut New York, Michael Musto and Jan Simpson, plus Tony Award-winning playwright Warren Leight.

Theater Talk departed CUNY TV and the weekly series ended production in July of 2018.

Theater Talk won another NY Emmy Award in 2019 for Best Interview/Discussion program.

The Theater Talk 2019 Tony Awards predictions special was taped at The Library of the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center before a live audience. The program aired nationally on PBS and other stations.


Susan Haskins-Doloff 2018 Letter on Weekly Series’ End in 2018

On Thursday, September 12, 2018 I voted in the New York State primary and after I scanned my ballot, Brian, the poll watcher, asked me when Theater Talk was coming back in the fall. “It’s not,” I told him and I realized that I just broke the story that I had yet to share with anyone else.

As many already know, we left our longtime studio, CUNY TV, at the end of last season. The Interim Executive Director there was no longer willing to give our independent production a berth at CUNY TV without taking over editorial and creative control herself. That didn’t work for our vision of the show, so Theater Talk moved on.

My co-Executive Producer Steve Doloff and I then looked for a producing partnership elsewhere that would offer us both good production services we could afford, distribution and that essential creative and editorial control. Nothing we explored fit the bill, and I came to realize the time had come to step back from doing a weekly program and instead take stock of Theater Talk’s Productions’ archive.

We have amassed 26 and a half years of conversations with theater greats, so we will focus on doing something more special with that beyond making the shows available on YouTube at www.theatertalk.org.

It has been my privilege to create Theater Talk for so long, including 22 years on Thirteen/WNET and 11 seasons nationally distributed by Executive Program Services in a producing partnership with CUNY TV. People tell me that the series made a difference and I like to think that is true. Also, it was great to be nominated for three NY Emmys over the last four years and to win one in 2017 (and another in 2019*) as the “Best Interview/Discussion Show.”

We are grateful to all who supported us both with their funds and others with just caring so much about the program. I’d like to extend special appreciation to director/actor Stephen Ahern who made it possible for Michael Riedel and I to begin this work in the first place on public access television back in 1993.

My gratitude also goes to all my other cohosts: Jesse Green, Elisabeth Vincentelli and Jason Zinoman of The New York Times, Michael Musto of NewNowNext, Adam Feldman of TimeOut New York, actor Julie Halston, Donna Hanover of Arts in The City, playwright/producer Warren Leight, Jan Simpson of BroadwayRadio, as well as Gordon Cox of Variety and Nancy Giles of CBS News Sunday Morning. Theater Talk succeeded because of the intelligence and wit they brought to the series all these years (as well as the glorious efforts of our production crew at CUNY TV).

Working in the theater is a labor of love. I am grateful (to quote the musical [title of show])
to have been and still be “Part of It All.

Thank you,

*copy updated in June 2022


After 25 Years, the Curtain Closes on ‘Theater Talk’

83 Responses to “”

  • hazelroslyn

    I LOVE your show. It’s fun, informative, and intelligent. The most
    important thing on my mind is the price of a theater ticket. I am a
    member of TDF and I had such high hopes of seeing everything at a
    bargain. Not so, the offerings do not include everything, the fees are
    usually over $40.00.

  • Anonymous

    My fave TT shows are with the panel of critics. I’ve been a devoted
    fan for almost 10 years.Thx!

  • Anonymous

    Michael, I’m really glad you didn’t jump on the “pretentious
    bandwagon” with ONCE this year.

  • wesbard

    Our PBS station only recently began showing THEATER TALK.
    I enjoy all the guests who have appeared, but I wish Mr. SMASH would
    listen more; it’s not about HIM.

  • Anonymous

    Love your show! Really enjoyed the recent ones on One Man Two Guvnors
    and Newsies. Peter and the Starcatcher too. Great job!

  • carolhampton

    Your show is a vital part of the theatrical community–I couldn’t do
    without it!

  • pwils16

    Theater Talk is one of my favorite programs, I only wish that it was
    an hour long and that it was “live” for a call in portion. How about
    having an audience? That would be fantastic!

  • cbs243

    Bring Stritch back every year! And John Simon.

  • rbarri2002

    I have loved your show for years, never miss it and especially enjoy
    the roundtable discussions with the various critics. I was thrilled to
    meet and speak to Susan after a performance of a play several years
    ago. I look forward to many more of your

  • Anonymous

    Keep up the great work! Theater Talk continues to be great – some of
    the best theater interviews around. Though I know the show is
    Broadway/industry centric, would be great if you could interview some
    of the great directors/theater artists who don’t usually work in the
    commercial theater Anne Bogart, Lee Bruer, Liz LaCompte, someone

  • md130

    Love Theater Talk. Especially the “predictions ” shows with Michael
    Miusto, Patrick Pacheco, and Jesse Green. Always love Elaine Stritch.
    Love it when she comes on with her hair in cutlers. Who does

  • barryle2

    Yeah! Michael should not have announced that there are “plants” in the
    audience for “One Man, Two Guvnors.” Luckily, I saw the play first.
    Aside from that…I love everybody! Enjoy the Tonys.

  • lyndah49

    It might be interesting to interview a head carpenter, a stage manager
    and or a dresser to get their back stage imput on how a show runs
    behind the scenes

  • lucyhaskell


  • buttonbuddha2

    If I had any comments anywhere near as incisive & witty as those I
    regularly hear on your show, I’d comment… great job,

  • jschnippe


  • anngrandt

    love your show. this was actually a good theater year.

  • snow_god

    Love the show, always entertaining and enlightening and Michael never
    fails to enrage me!

  • thomasray123

    Love your show. Keep it up. How about some tips on how to get cheaper
    tickets? You all did a show during the height of the great recession
    about the state of the business “the end of big wall street money
    buying expenseive seats.” Where are we now? Cover the off broadway
    awards too.

  • colin.schmit

    Susan, please take Michael to task on that whole George C. Scott

  • slainte7

    LOVE your show, don’t get to the theatre as much as I’d like and most
    of these votes are based on who I think will win the Tonys. (I always
    did well in the office pool.)

  • philipmysparrow

    The Tony Awards show was GREAT!!!

  • anndgross

    Bravissimi everyone! Dedicating my love this season to my adored
    friend, Howard Kissel, z”l,a great friend of the theater and of
    THEATER TALK. Thank you for airing “A Walk THrough the Player’s Club”
    with Howard after his death. How he would have appreciated this
    season! We miss and love you, Howard!

  • frankmcdonnell

    Theater Talk ranks with programs like Charlie Rose for the most
    intelligent (and humorous) show on TV. I think in almost every
    interview with an actor/ theater professional (and what incredible
    actors you have interviewed) I have learned something or been amazed
    at the insight they share.

  • marcinthedark5

    Theater Talk deserves the Tony Award for all that it does for the
    Theatre. It is a vital source of information, insight and humor. I
    love it!!!

  • edscheid

    I enjoy the show

  • Anonymous

    Obviously it wasn’t musical theatre’s best outing. However some
    incredible non-musicals brought music to my ears and heart. And I am
    quite enamored wityh your show.

  • comedy2345

    On the show, I like it when you interview someone about old
    productions, or playwrights.
    The show on Shaw was great…and Shakespeare…Hvaing just read
    Dodsworth (the play) I think Sidney Howard would be a good topic…if
    anyone else remembers him.

  • canoedrew

    love the episodes of Theater Talk that feature a composer at the

  • knottrg@hotmail.com

    Why hasn’t Jim Dale ever been on Theater Talk?

  • Anonymous

    Keep up the thoroughly entertaining and insightful
    interviews. We look forward to every one.

  • Earl Kunz

    Thanks for this lifeline to Broadway. And now I know who to thank (and lament) for TheatreWeek! I try to get to NYC twice a year for some shows so this helps during the dry spells. Please keep up the good work but PLEASE never again limit a topic like FOLLIES to only half a program. How about discussing touring shows etc. BTW The Addams Family was not high theater but was fun and improved immensely in the tourning edition. Now if you want to pick on shows, you should have really gone after LEAP OF FAITH and ON A CLEAR DAY… lol Looking forward to your major story line next season on SMASH.

  • Liam LIC

    Good to have a show dedicated to the theatre. It would be even better if Mr. Reidel spent less time talking (particularly about his columns or his oh-so-minor role on Smash), allowed Ms. Haskins equal time as co-host and – most importantly – allowed the guests the majority of the air time. Mr. Reidel has a column in which he can pontificate all he wants, we don’t need a recap on the show.
    I would watch more regularly but much of the time I am not interested in listening to Mr. Reidel carry on. The show is ‘Theatre Talk’ NOT ‘Michael Reidel Talk’.

  • Theater Talk Web


  • Terence Goodman

    I’ve been separated from NYC and my35 year theater career for several years now and I miss New York and my theater community so much living here in Utah. Long story. I drop everything and schedule everything around Theater Talk Saturday nights at 10 to see old friends and catch up on what’s happening in NYC. theater. It’s a language only theater people know and understand and I revel in hearing it.

    I’m such a fan I’m looking to buy one of your groovy Theater Talk mugs but can’t find anywhere on your site to purchase one. Can you send me some info on that.

    Terence Goodman

  • Mary Roberts

    Just watched your program on TONY possibilities, tonight, May 25, 2013.
    I will tell you there are MANY, MANY people who remember Ben Vereen’s wonderful performance in the original “PIPPIN”, and, who would, still, MUCH prefer him.

  • Viewer Mail

    I watched the show for the first time.
    It was very interesting – I learned quite a bit about what is in the theatre these days. Glad to hear about the show about Barbra Streisand.

    I did not like the host’s irreverant behavior. I think he is immature, silly and disrespectful. I don’t even know why he sits the way he does- it is so unprofessional. I think that you should replace him. I like the female host.
    She is natural and relaxed and it is a change from some other anchors that one sees on tv but he is extreme and I don’t think he deserves to be a host.
    He isn’t nice to the guests and is insulting to some of the theatre folks.
    They need constructive comments -not insults without explanation.
    Get rid of him!

    -Carol Ann

  • Douglas

    I love your show! You learn a lot about theater by listening to people who make it happen. Also, you’re so funny. Keep up the good work. Loved the Kinky Boots episode!

  • D

    I like the show. However, I think the host, Reidel, acts like he did a big line of coke before each show. Very hyper and almost out of control. Very annoying.

  • Bob Cloxton

    Do you happen to know why all, or at least award winning shows are not filmed for posterity? One example: How nice it would be to see John Lloyd Young’s performance in Jersey Boys once the show closes.
    Thank you.

  • Greetings,

    Turn to Flesh Productions is a new theatre company.

    This coming Valentine’s Day Weekend, we proudly present the inaugural, world premiere play, Cupid and Psyche: A New Play in Blank Verse! This contemporary retelling of the classic Greek tale is a quintessential lovers myth that explores the nature of Love versus Lust, and the marriage of Passion to the Soul.

    Further information can be found on our website(s) http://www.turntoflesh.com and http://www.cupidandpsyche.net

    Additionally, I have included a link to our featurette below:

  • Hi!!

    I’ve followed you for some time and based on our mutual interest, I thought you might be interested in a concert of upcoming musical composer Drew Overcash’s music. All the details you need are in the link below! Hope to see you Feb 24th!



  • Jenny Geer

    Love the show, but wish you could give more time to Off-Broadway, there is so much great work being done and it’s much more affordable, why not give it more exposure instead of spending two episodes on the demise of Spiderman (entertaining as it was). Many thanks.

  • eccentric01

    I live and work several hundred miles west of Manhattan, and Theater Talk never seems to come on at the same time from one week to another. However, I do manage to catch an occasional episode. Of course, Theater Talk keeps me aware of what plays and musicals are being produced on that lovely island between New Jersey and Brooklyn; but, more important to me are the sharp, incisive minds expressing themselves in sharp, incisive sentences and somewhat nasal voices. Thank you for reminding me that not everything in the American Theater has that oddly pre-fabricated look of the shows that make it out here on tour, and that actual people work hard and sweat and worry and get nauseous on Opening Nights–that the desire to tell stories in the language of human behavior is still strong and deep.

  • Anonymous

    Please consider having Adam Feldman as a guest more frequently. I always enjoy hearing him speak. For example, his comments on the February 15, 2014, episode were much more insightful than the other two panelists, Michael Musto and Jesse Green, who seemed to be there for comic fodder. And although it’s fun to laugh, I primarily watch “Theatre Talk” to learn about theatre.

  • Brian Greene

    Great Show! 🙂

  • Mark Isenberg

    Hello from Florida,
    As one of the not so many to see Elaine Stritch at Liberty,I was surprised how quickly you folks put together a memorial banner and tribute on her passing with the reairing of the early 2013 program before she moved back to family roots near Detroit. She was never the best singer or actress but she was always powerful,always witty and was lucky that some guy named Sondheim liked her enough to write her a couple of songs that will always shine and a few of us even remember her from the Ellen Burstyn short run tv show over twenty years ago on ABC. While Theater Talk often lacks production values,it brings gifted artists together. And a few of us outside the WNET home base,find it on Friday nights via WUSF digital tv in Tampa. later, mark

  • Vincent

    I am thoroughly disgusted by the boorish behavior, unkind to the point of cruelty, that the “host” of this show displays toward his colleague. His body language, his garb, his constant interruptions make this a difficult show to watch. Nor is he any John Simon, whose acerbic wit was more often than not well-pointed. This guy, after apologizing on the air, should either straighten up and fly right or take a walk.

  • Beau

    Can you guys upload some more Tony prediction episodes from years past to youtube please? I love watching them, seeing who the frontrunners were considered to be and looking at the winner list to see who pulled off upsets.

  • Kay

    LOVE THE SHOW. ,Michael needs to tone down his dealings with susan….it beginning to drive people away. Read the comments ? !
    The answer to the odd hours is the DVR just set to any time any where

    • Mary

      Agreed, Kay. I have seen the program only once–an interview with Alison Bechdel and the Fun Home team. I’d have preferred to have seen Susan interview them without Michael at all. He’s not at all “audacious” but instead rather thoughtless and insecure. Sorry Michael, you really should take pride in your idea of a program and the introduction of Susan to scene, and step into the background to enjoy from off-stage.

  • Jack

    Has Michael Riedel left the show? Haven’t seen him for the past several episodes. YEAH!!!! I hope nothing bad has happened to him, but it surely would be a relief to see him off Theater Talk. He’s simply too pompous; I cannot stand listening to his sarcasm-soaked remarks. Riedel’s personality is the exact reason I feel Broadway lacks a deep sense of humanity. Susan Haskins is more thoughtful, inquisitive and curious about the show’s guests. She is a better conduit for a forum on theater. Stay strong, Susan!

  • Rose Chomiak

    The show is no longer shown on WYCC,I am terribly disappointed.

  • Peter Bretz

    Can’t believe I just watched an entire 1/2 hour
    show , with so many people talking and not one
    mention of the original authors name ! Oh well
    doesn’t really matter.

  • danny candib

    Love love love your show. But what happened to the years 2007-2013? I see only 2005-2006 and 2014-2015. thanks.

  • Jm

    Love the show !!! Purchased the Tennessee Williams book by Mr.Lalhr …Great Book!!!

  • Steve Mallory

    Love the show, except for Michael Riedel.
    Makes light of his co-host’s comments.
    Look up CONDESCENDING in the dictionary, surprise the definition is “SIR mikey riedel”
    He just thinks he’s the bee’s knees.
    If he wears a wedding ring I’m sure he is married to his self.

    • Steve Mallory

      I forgot to say I’m sure David Hyde Pierce based his portrayal of Dr. Miles Crane on mikey, THEY ARE SYNONYMOUS!

  • Richard M. Ticktin, Esq.

    Any interest is having Martin Charnin discuss his 40 year journey with ANNIE (as of 8/9/2016)? I rep Martin who would be delighted to track the history.

  • Nancy O'Hara

    Have we seen the last of ‘Theater Talk’? I hope not!

  • Jackie

    Reidel interrupts and leads guests into frequent bursts of raucous laughter making the show difficult to follow.
    More serious talk PLEASE!

  • James MacDonald

    This refers to a program featuring Mrs Warren’s Profession. The most shocking aspect of the play, I think, is how “reasonable” moral blackmailer George Crofts beli8eves himself to be. He is nothing less than a pimp, who attempts to coerce Vivvie Warren into marriage, believing himself to be a thoroughly decent man

  • Alexander Goldstein

    I just watched, on youtube, the 2009 episode honoring “The Boys in the Band.” I had only first read the play a few days ago, and I look forward to watching the movie. The Theatre Talk episode was excellent, but one comment I have is the supposed derivation of the line “Who do you have to fuck to get a drink around here?” I think the line, like success, has many “fathers,” but I originally read that it was spoken by a female extra on DeMille’s “The Ten Commandments,” who, tired of being pinched and mauled during the orgy of the Golden Calf, called her agent and asked “Who do I have to fuck to get off this picture?”

  • Charles Lowery

    Keep up the good work God bless

  • Robert Cohn

    How can Michael like Mame? What did he think of Hello Dally and Man of LaMancha as movies? If he like them he needs a doctor quickly.

  • Michael Gifford

    To Susan Haskins: I just saw your interview with the South Park guys about the play, the Book of Mormon. Fascinating; good interview. Just a thought: It was obvious from the interview that you are not open-minded or tolerant about Mormons (I am Mormon) and you continually made faces about some of the statements by your guests and steered into the conversation negative statements about Mormons. For example, at one point you stated as a fact that Mormons used to believe or do believe that black folks are “sub human.” You need to get your facts straight before you make such a rude and untrue statement. Not only has such a thing never been the position of the Mormon Church and was never taught to me as I was growing up, but the vast majority of Mormons do not and have not believed such a thing! Also, you made denigrating statements about Mormon women. Your pseudo intellectual statements are hurtful and unfair. Our religious beliefs may, to you, be strange and unbelievable (as it is to most folks), but that does not mean that you have to use your position to make false statements. My assumption is that you are typically a fair and opened minded person, so I recommend that you research the facts of things before you make statements. Otherwise, loved the interview.

    • Susan Haskins

      I apologize.

    • vicki

      My middle aged Mormon friend told me long ago that the Mormons were racist and homophobic.
      possibly this problem has gotten better. She also said that she loved ‘being told what to do; how to be a wife. how to make jam and quilts etc.” We have to respect other religions but there are Mormons such as my friend who tho a devout Mormon of 40 years, would find truth in what Ms. Haskins said.

    • .Curan

      So true. But many misunderstand or believe false notions about Mormonism. The play will help to contribute even more misconceptions.
      Still enjoy Susan Haskins and Theater Talk.

  • Steven Carinci

    To all of those who think Michael was obnoxious all I have to say was good for him. Without a little prodding and humor the show is now unwatchable. A sense of humor and a bit of pomposity kept the pace up as thespians can be so full of themselves they can make theater talk as exciting as watching paint dry. With Susan and the “rotators” the show will continue to lose viewers. One big SCHNOOOOOOR! Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

    • JV

      Agreed, Steven. I miss Michael’s theater knowledge and quirky style. It added some oomph to the program.

  • A Z

    Love the new, improved show with Susan and a rotating set of co-pilot interviewers. Finally! No more patronizing, misogynistic, interruptor, Michael Riedel. At last, I don’t have to watch this man every episode being a snitty prig to Susan Haskins while impressimg himself. Shame on you, little bitchy Michael. Confusing that for professional-level work. Way to put negativity out into the world. The theater community let it pass for too long. No more. #MeToo #GoodRiddance

  • Stephan

    Sorry Guys…without Michael…it’s boring.

  • Noella Rhone

    So glad to NOT have to listen to Michael Riedel cutting everyone off and spouting his sarcasm! I’m enjoying the rotating co-hosts, as well! Hope the show goes on and on! Thanks Susan!

  • bob dawson

    I enjoyed the show this evening Aug 23, 2018 on channel 25, with John Simon.

    Wonderful seeing Donna again too. (I accompanied her at a party)

    bob Dawson, pianist

  • Al Zimmermann

    I’m sorry to hear you’re shutting down the show. I’m going to miss you greatly. Please try to find a new home, one where they’ll give you the control over content that you want.

  • A

    Dear Susan, please try hulu or netflix or any of the streaming services. The New Yorker? Conde Nast? NY Magazine? Amazon? It’s not just you we’ll miss, it’s NYC in a half hour.

  • Steven Smith

    Very sad to hear the news that there will be no more theatre talk. Living in Melbourne Australia it has been a stimulating
    insight into theatre in NewYork.
    Intelligent discussion about a crucial and vibrant art form surely can never go out of style. There must be a place for Theatre Talk on the airwaves. It beggars belief it will be no more. Here’s hoping you can find a home where you can be content with your control of the content.
    May Theatre Talk’s conversation not be gagged!

    • Olivia Shapiro

      I’m so sad about Theatre talk ending it was one of my favorite shows and something I saw looked forward to seeing

  • Darcey Callison

    This is devastating. Theatre Talk was the best and I hope hope hope there are plans to revive it. So informative and entertaining. PLEASE COME BACK

  • Barbara Lacher

    I always watched a Theater Talk religiously every Sunday. I was shocked when I learned that the show was cancelled. I am grateful that you were able to do a special 2019 Tony Awards episode. Please bring the weekly show back! Even monthly would be okay.

  • Richard Salazar

    Just discovered Theater Talk while searching for clips of Jerry Stiller. The Stiller and Meara interviews, in 2 parts, from about 10 years ago are priceless. I am addicted to the many varied conversations and interviews. But then I discover that TT is discontinued! I guess now in 2020 I will have to get used to disappointment.

  • Jim M.

    As regards the so-called demise of “Theater Talk,” the world had come to a sort of standstill anyway, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and then violent, Marxist-motivated anarchists tearing cities apart and causing an upswing in the viral contagion rate, a ridiculously disproportionate and exploitative response to a few instances of bad apple law enforcement officers, though predictably spouting the talking points of “systemic racism” when, in fact, the correct term for what these Communists manipulate (to serve the cause of social unrest) is “racialism.”

    Some of us who enjoy theater still believe in the free enterprise system which brought us commercial theater (and so many other great and wonderful things in this world, including cinema, computers, electricity, medical cures, radio, space travel, television) in the first place. And it would be nice to see “Theater Talk” return to some new broadcast home on some kind of regular basis, if and when the world returns to some form of normalcy someday.

    As with the former “Sneak Previews” and “Siskel & Ebert at the Movies,” which innovated a place on television for a serious and critical discussion of cinema, “Theater Talk,” although not the first on TV to critique and discuss theater (Boston’s WGBH-TV and NET/PBS had “Elliot Norton Reviews” from the 1958 through 1982), was certainly the most prominent and longest-lasting forum in recent years for such a format about theater.

    Of the persons posting here who have brought up the issue of the former “Theater Talk” co-host Michael Riedel, some have stated Mr. Riedel was a negative aspect of the program, while others chimed in his departure caused the program’s downfall. In general, I agree with those who think Mr. Riedel made a positive and substantive contribution to the program. And even the very personality quirk some thought disruptive and a negative I found contributed to making “Theater Talk” the charming and unique show that it had been. Yes, Mr. Riedel was opinionated and, yes, he did have a tendency to dominate the show. But that is what a good critic and showman is paid to do. I never seriously thought producer and co-host Susan Haskins disliked Mr. Riedel, although I sometimes sensed she was biting her lip or could see her rolling her eyes at some bawdy statement he made. But I thought in the main Miss Haskins was genuinely amused by her on-screen partner’s spirit and verve and, yes, nerve. For her part, Miss Haskins brought a calming and intellectual influence to the program, occasionally reeling in Riedel when he went too far, and serving as the proper balance in the production. I enjoyed both co-hosts together very much and could tell they both had tons of fun whenever the late great theater legend Elaine Stritch visited the show. Together, the team of Haskins and Riedel were a broadcast institution, and for those of us living away from New York served the necessary function of being the eyes and ears to what is happening in contemporary theater, while also lending their combined senses of informed perspective about theater’s history and influence in our culture.

    I also enjoyed the contributions of the visiting theater critics in roundtable discussions, a nice blend along with the interviews of players, playwrights, producers, and tunesmiths.

    So take a pause and reflect on your past accomplishments, and wait for the world to resume spinning on its normal axis. Try working out something with PBS directly, or perhaps a return of the Sunday afternoon cultural ghetto on a commercial broadcast network? Perhaps CBS or NBC would be interested in something in addition to sports and its morning public affairs programming on Sundays. Sunday afternoons or early evenings and “Theater Talk” just feels right somehow. And if a weekly show is not feasible, then perhaps an hour-long monthly show could work. Certainly the special programs for Tony Awards season and year-end reviews are a necessary tradition. But please, “Theater Talk,” don’t stay away too long. You are still needed.

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