Monday, December 22, 2008

Nancy Coyne to Broadway tourists: "We hate you"

Advertising big shot Nancy Coyne hates tourists from Cleveland.

Oh my. I guess we all put our foot in our mouth once in a while, but Nancy Coyne - as in Serino Coyne Advertising - is going to have to live with her gaffe for some time to come. Her agency is Broadway's biggest, and generally spends 10% of any show's receipts on the ads that promote it. For most Broadway shows, that means $100,000 a week. Not exactly chump change.

So here is what happened. Coyne is a well liked personality in the Broadway community, and often asked, "How's business?" That's exactly what the New York Times did a few days ago, and here is what she replied:

“The last 15 years have been boom years for theater — I always expected the pendulum to swing, and I simply see this as a correction,” said Nancy Coyne, chairwoman of the theater advertising agency Serino Coyne. “The good news is that so many straight plays are now coming in the spring, and I think New Yorkers will come out for them once the tourists go away. We’re horrible snobs. We hate tourists from Cleveland.”

Of course, we think people from Ohio are a whole lot nicer and friendlier than most. In fact, most are a living Chamber of Commerce for the Buckeye state. And don't try to portray the state as a backwater. Just ask any theater that is part of the Cleveland Theater Collective what's going on in the state. There's plenty to choose from.

You know, Nancy, they don't have to go to New York to see great theatre. Just be glad they do!

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