AMNA NAWAZ: Frank Rich is a writer and producer whose career has taken him from The New York Times, as theater critic, to HBO, as executive producer of Veep, now its in final season. In tonight's Brief But Spectacular, Rich looks back on his life in the arts.
FRANK RICH, Essayist: I grew up in Washington, D.C. The theater became a kind of obsessive passion for me as an escape, I think, from a childhood I wanted to escape from. When I was growing up, it was the tail end of what we now think of as the golden age of New York theater, the careers of Tennessee Williams, Arthur Miller, the burst of Edward Albee. And there was a theater still exists right now called the National Theatre, which was a tryout house, as they called it then, for Broadway shows. I went there so often, usually buying standing room, that the manager took pity on me and hired me as a ticket-taker. And, frankly, it was my entire education in the theater, and really, in retrospect, in television producing that I do now, because you would see a show like Hello, Dolly! come in that seemed to be a hit. But you would watch David Merrick work on it and make it better. You would see The Odd Couple, directed by Mike Nichols, come in, and you would see Neil Simon, the playwright, keep tinkering with it. I started writing theater reviews when I was in college on The Harvard Crimson, because I reviewed plays that were trying out in Boston. One of them was a new musical by Stephen Sondheim. Years later, I would find out that the producer of the show had recommended me to The Times as a potential drama critic. I am really against journalists becoming friendly or chummy with their subjects. I never went to the Tony Awards. Indeed, to this day, I have never been to the Tony Awards. I feel the lesson is applicable to Washington. It doesn't help to be chummy with the people you're covering. I'm very much against the White house Correspondents Dinner, for that reason.
But, even at a more profound level, if you look back, like, at a story like Watergate, Woodward and Bernstein got that story because they were not going to Georgetown dinner parties and being told by John Mitchell or Henry Kissinger that this is a nonstory and forget about it. In 2008-ish, I had started working as a consultant for HBO, and one of the things they were actively looking for was a Washington show. I saw In The Loop, Armando Iannucci's film about essentially the run-up to the Iraq War, and I immediately felt, this is the guy. Very early on, before we shot anything, he sent a memo about production design for Veep. Here's the thing, he said. You go to these offices in the EOB or the White House, they look terrible. There's detritus everywhere. The chairs don't fit with the desk. They're government issue. Everything is a mess. The people dress 10 years behind New York. Veep captures D.C. in a way that I had been waiting for my whole life. It reminds me of what I fantasized about the theater growing up, being with a show out of town, rewriting it, fixing it, making it better. It's great to sort of mix it up and come up with these crazy stories about these horrible characters whom we love. My name is Frank Rich, and this is my Brief But Spectacular take on all the theater in my life.
1.tail end of 尾端
This is the tail end of the season.
2.take pity on 同情
No woman had ever felt the need to take pity on him before.
3.applicable to 适用于
Appraisal has traditionally been seen as most applicable to those in management and supervisory positions
4.chummy with 友好
They're very chummy with their neighbours.
5.mix up 弄混
I like to mix up designer clothes.
朱迪·伍德拉夫：弗兰克·利奇是一名作家兼制片人。他的从业生涯从《纽约时报》的评论家到家庭影院频道（HBO）电视剧《副总统》的执行制片人 。《副总统》目前已经播到了最后一季 。在今晚的《简短而精彩》中，利奇将回顾自己在艺术领域的经历 。
弗兰克·利奇，评论家：我在华盛顿特区长大。剧院对于我来说已经成为一个难以自拔的热衷之地，让我可以短暂逃离，从童年开始就是这样 。我年少的那个时期是如今我们眼中纽约剧院黄金时代的尾声 。那时候有爆红的田纳西·威廉斯、亚瑟·米勒和爱德华·阿尔比 。那时候的一家剧院至今依然在，它就是国家剧院 。那时候，百老汇的演出都在这里预演，所以我们叫它排练房 。我经常去国家剧院转悠，我只能买的起边边角角的位置 。剧院的经理看我可怜，就雇我做检票员 。说实话，剧院教会了我太多 。现在回头看，我现在制作的影视剧都是拜这段经历所赐 。因为在这里能看到各种演出，比如《俏红娘》，这在那时候还挺火的 。但即便如此，我还是能看到大卫·梅里克在精益求精地雕琢这部音乐剧 。这里还能看到迈克·尼科尔斯执导的《老友记》，以及编剧尼尔·西蒙不断修改剧本的身影 。哈佛的校报《哈佛深红色》开启了我的剧评生涯，因为我那时候开始给在波士顿预演的剧本写评论 。其中一个就是史蒂芬·桑坦出品的音乐剧 。多年后，我才发现，这部剧的制作人曾把我推荐给《纽约时报》做戏剧评论家 。我很讨厌记者表现的很了解自己关注的主题的样子 。直到今天为止，我从未参加过托尼奖颁奖典礼，从未 。我觉得这一课也适用于华盛顿 。跟自己采访的人套近乎并没有什么用 。也是因为这个原因，我很讨厌白宫记者晚宴 。
从更深的角度来讲，纵观历史，在审视水门这样的新闻时，伍德沃和伯恩斯坦之所以能拿到这条新闻也是因为他们没有参加白宫记者晚宴。虽然约翰·米歇尔亨利·基辛格都说这是无稽之谈，让他们别乱想了 。2008年，我开始做HBO的咨询师 。HBO很关心伦敦的演出 。我看了《灵通人士》 。这部电影由阿尔曼多·伊安努奇执导，讲的是伊拉克战争前期的事儿 。我当时就觉得，就是他了 。很早的时候，在我们没有合作拍摄之前，他给我发过《副总统》的设计样本 。当时他说，无论是行政办公楼还是白宫，看起来都很糟糕 。到处都是碎屑，椅子和桌子也不配套，这就是政府的通病 。一切都是一团糟，那里的人都是10年前的装扮 。《副总统》对华盛顿特区的描绘正是我终其一生想寻找的感觉 。这部剧提醒我年少时对剧院所坚持的理解——从城市中体会一个演出，重新写，不断精修，精益求精 。我觉得，将这些融合起来，创作我们喜欢的人物和这些人物的疯狂故事是挺好的一件事儿 。我是弗兰克·利奇，这是我本期带来的跟我的剧院情结有关的《简短而精彩》 。