It was amusing to note the careless nature with which Justin Hayford reviewed The Best of the Fest shows at the Factory Theater [December 27]. One would think that such a verbose critic, given to such authorlike voicings, would take care to note certain details that may be rather important in regard to the shows, and to check the validity of the facts he does employ.

For example, Gabrielle Kaplan’s autobiographical piece was about Altoona, Pennsylvania, not Duncansville, Ohio, as Hayford erroneously noted. In addition, it may be interesting for the readers to know that Kaplan’s Zoom, Gali, Gali! was the show that won the fest, making it singularly the best.

Perhaps Hayford was paying attention and simply didn’t agree with certain elements of fact. Perhaps he should have the chutzpah to report that. And perhaps theatergoers will take the same care in reading Hayford’s review as he did in writing it.

Eric Andrade


Justin Hayford replies:

In my review I wrote that Kaplan’s piece is about growing up Jewish in Duncansville, Ohio, her hometown just outside of Altoona, as she mentioned in the show. Scenes take place in both Duncansville and Altoona.