Maura Hogan is City Paper's contributing theater editor.
Every year the Charleston City Paper
seeks out a superstar writer to serve as our overview critic for Spoleto Festival USA coverage. An overview critic attends all of the festival's shows, reviewing them individually, and thinking on a larger scale to connect themes among performances, directors, and companies. It's no easy task. The overview critic must not only have a strong knowledge base of all things arts-related but an especially keen eye for how those themes pertain to Charleston as well as their connections to the international arts scene.
This year we didn't have much trouble landing on Maura Hogan, City Paper
's contributing theater editor. Hogan, who grew up in Charleston, has a personal history with the Spoleto Festival.
Hogan has followed Spoleto Festival USA since its debut opera, The Queen of Spades
, in 1977 — in fact she was in it. On that first foray she did so from the other side of the proscenium, as a member of its children’s choir. In 1978, she spied a safari-suit-clad Tennessee Williams ambling along a path at Kiawah, in town for the premiere of A Lovely Sunday for Creve Coeur
. In 1985, a family for whom she nannied offered her a select spot at a small private concert in a Legare Street home, performed by the then-teenager violinist Joshua Bell. To sum it up, this lifelong arts lover is pretty sure that she wouldn’t be the same person today if those unfettered ideas and phenomenal artists hadn’t taken to the streets and theaters and parlors of her hometown during her formative years.
A marketing professional, Hogan works as director of advancement communications at the College of Charleston, and has previously held staff positions at Time Inc.,The New Yorker, The New York Times, Vanity Fair, Gourmet,
and the Brooklyn Academy of Music. She received a BA from the College of Charleston and a masters degree in creative writing from Trinity College Dublin.
Hogan has contributed pieces on the arts, culture, travel and lifestyle to publications including The New York Times
, Garden & Gun
, and The Post & Courier
, as well as for cultural websites such as Flavorpill and Culturebot.