From The WTF Files: See The Radio City Rockettes In 3D!
- November 15th, 2011
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It’s that time of year again. The holiday spirit — and holiday music — is in the air, nevermind that it’s not even Thanksgiving yet and we’re already talking about Christmas. The Radio City Rockettes began performing their classic Christmas Spectacular this week, for the first time this year in 3D!
You might be asking the same question we did the first time we saw the ad for this year’s show: “Um, haven’t the Rockettes always performed in 3D, being live theater and all?” If they were only 2D, that famous Rockette kick line would have fallen a little flat. (Sorry, we couldn’t help ourselves.)
To clarify, the show has apparently added a new scene that includes a 3D film element. To us, this comes off as a gimmicky, desperate attempt to make the show seem like it’s keeping up with the times, and trying to find a way to compete with holiday movies released in 3D. But kids can tell immediately when something is trying to be cool as opposed to when it simply is cool.
While the show producers are trying to appeal to a young, tech-savvy audience, sometimes it’s better to remain an un-fussed with classic. The Rockettes annual show, like the lighting of the tree at Rockefeller Center and checking out the window displays on Fifth Avenue, are a holiday tradition dating back decades. Instead, this year, the show is being billed as “A Tradition Transformed,” but it doesn’t need to be transformed. Live performances — whether a concert, play, or musical spectacular — can’t be substituted at home, no matter the technological advancements.
What’s more, 3D isn’t all that. According to high school and college students, only 18% say a film being offered in 3D makes them want to see it more. While that figure may be a little higher among younger kids who are more likely to get caught up in the hype, in the end, it’s the content, not the delivery that makes a show or movie successful. And when 3D is tacked on arbitrarily or for no logical purpose (like in a live show that’s already in “3D”), it can be more disruptive than innovative.
Ultimately, the 3D effect in the Rockettes’ show takes the focus away from the stars and places it squarely on the technology, in which case, why see the show at all when there’s a 3D movie showing at a far cheaper ticket price?