All artists eventually leave Chicago. Bellow left;
Mamet left; RT Both left; even Nelson Algren left
Chicago. Dreiser left.
Chicago is the undoubted center of comedy in
America, the prime feeder of New York and Los
Angeles with comic talent; and so the comics
leave quicker than anyone.
Actors leave, but when their welcome is worn
out in Los Angeles or life proves too lonely in
New York, they can return here and be
Opera singers move here after they're famous,
want to have children and are going to travel
all the time anyway. They don't leave, because
they never really lived here anyway, so there's
no sense of loss when they're gone.
I once had dinner with an agent in New York
who said she wouldn't rep me while I remained
in Chicago. She didn't wait for me to ask why
before saying, "If you live in Chicago, you're
not careerist. It's just the work for you - not
the career. Come to New York, and we'll
take you seriously."
I'm glad I didn't move to New York to have
her rep me, because 4 months later she told
me she was leaving representation to work
on Martha Stewart's television show.