American Theatre

American Theatre is a magazine containing news, features and opinions on American and international theatre. Published six times a year by the Theatre Communications Group, this periodical was founded in 1984.Subjects for American Theatre include drama and theatre. Nicole Estvanik Taylor is the Managing Editor and Jim O' Quinn is the Editor-in-Chief.

Articles from Vol. 28, No. 3, March

20 Questions
What do you always have with you when you work? My iPhone, because it's a rhyming dictionary, it's a tape recorder, and you can research anything on it. It's a wonderful little songwriting tool. [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] What kind of music do...
Amsterdam, Netherlands
BYE BYE: Nearly two decades old, the Dutch theatre collective Dood Paard tours frequently. It is perhaps best known worldwide for MedEia, in which three actors retell the story of one of literature's most famous scorned women from the point of view...
Cooking with Elisa Upstream Theater
Bonnie Taylor, DIRECTION: Cooking with Elisa is about the dynamics of power and greed. The production of food--elaborate dishes from French cuisine--is the play's main action, and the kitchen stands for the economic system within which the two characters,...
David Gallo Expanding Universes: Whether Designing a Backdrop for August Wilson or an Arena for Phish, the Designer Sees Each Project as a Fresh Start
"I LOVE THE IDEA OF CREATING NEW WORLDS, other places," declares award-winning scenic designer David Gallo, who was inspired as a kid by the alternative universe of Star Wars. He's been inventing "other places" for a quarter-century for directors from...
Down the Rabbit Hole with Stephanie Ansin: Her Eye-Popping Shows Captivate South Florida Youngsters-And Impress Grown-Ups Who Tag Along
EVERYONE KNOWS THAT IMAGINATION IS an essential ingredient of theatre, but the audience at Inanna and the Huluppu Tree, a fantasy adapted from Sumerian folklore, needs no imagination whatsoever to experience the vision described above. It happens before...
In September 1978, Two Nights after I Arrive In
New York City to attend graduate school, I find myself in the front row at the Performing Garage on Wooster Street watching Nayatt School. The play is the third part of the Wooster Group's trilogy Three Places in Rhode Island, based on autobiographical...
Less Is More Fun: Two Action-Packed, Family-Friendly Productions Are out to Prove There's More Than One Way to Stage a Spectacle
PETER AND THE STARCATCHERS, DAVE BARRY and Ridley Pearson's best-selling Peter Pan prequel, is a rollicking, action-packed fantasy novel that would seem daunting to stage in all its glory. "It would cost about $65 million to do it right," says Alex...
Music from the Ashes
NEW YORK CITY: When Elizabeth Swados was commissioned to write the music for a show to commemorate the 100th anniversary of New York's Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire, she didn't expect to feel a personal connection to the tragedy that killed 146...
Next Stop Big Top
WHERE ELSE DO PEOPLE FROM ALL WALKS OF LIFE COME TOGETHER MORE often than underground in the New York subway? In Aditi Kapil's new play Agnes Under the Big Top (running through March 6 at Mixed Blood in Minneapolis, where Kapil directs, and March 2-April...
North Adelaide, Australia
COME OUT FESTIVAL: Among this biennial celebration's 65 events are a number of intriguing theatre performances. Tasmania's Terrapin Puppet Theatre and the Children's Art Theatre of China Welfare Institute have collaborated on When the Pictures Came...
Pan Asian Rep Channels Vietnam
NEW YORK CITY: Because We Are dramatizes the unequal treatment of Vietnamese women and girls and offers a deeply critical view of the roles men play in in Vietnamese society, this affecting dance/music/theatre work, says Nguyen thi Minn Ngoc, has no...
Peering Back at You: Putting Yourself in the Place of the Colleagues Evaluating You Is the Key to Improving Your Grant Applications
SERVING ON A PEER REVIEW PANEL IS THE ART-world equivalent of jury duty. Though you may try to dodge the responsibility--so busy! --it is one of the most instructive and worthwhile services you can undertake for your community, not to mention for yourself,...
Plays & Players a Contender
PHILADELPHIA: After 100 years in operation, it's about time Plays & Players named an artistic director. Rut there's a good reason the historic company just got around to giving Daniel Student the title: Initially founded in 1911 as a private social...
Prometheus in a Mosh Pit
DIANE PAULUS'S CHOICE TO stage a rock-musical adaptation of Aeschylus' nearly 2,500-year-old Greek drama Prometheus Bound may seem incongruous. After all, the play contains extended monologues, little action, and a protagonist who's tethered to a rock....
Publish or Perish: Why Don't More Theatres in the United States Print the Plays They Produce?
DOES THE ACADEMIC ADAGE "PUBLISH OR perish" apply to theatre? If you're a theatre artist, you are more likely to perish before you publish anything. But theatre people are perennial optimists, so let us ask not Why publish your play? but rather 14...
Rapp Sheet
RATTLESTICK PLAYWRIGHTS THEATER'S NEW YORK premiere of Adam Rapp's The Hallway Trilogy--three plays set 50 years apart, currently running through March 20--boils down to this: They're about overwhelming, unrequited love, and the action goes down in...
Romulus Linney: 1930-2011
I AM STRUCK BY THE power we all possess to shape the lives of others. At our best, I suppose, we hope to touch the heart of another human being as we collide, sometimes with a soft touch, sometimes with a hard thud. [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Twenty-five...
Sandy Harper Northern Lights: On the Stage She and Her Husband-Founded, Alaskan Artists and Themes Are Right at Home
ONE DAY LAST OCTOBER, A GROUP OF ACTORS and stage crew were on their way from Anchorage to perform a preview of a new play in a remote village in the interior of Alaska when they received shocking news. A 21-year-old Native man in Galena on the Yukon...
The Happiness Conundrum
Is there such a thing as complete and lasting happiness? Helen Hayes Award-winning playwright Jennifer L. Nelson found herself pondering this question a few years ago, during an emotional rough patch she attributes to "being alive." She polled her...
The Time of His Life: Swimming with Spalding Gray, through Good Times and Bad
THE LATE SPALDING GRAY'S ART FLOURISHED in two environments. First, the Downtown avant-garde of New York City, where he worked with the Performance Group and the Wooster Group from the late 1960s to the early 1980s. Second, living and collaborating...
Venice, Italy
LA BIENNIALE DI VENEZIA: Since last October, if Venetian theatregoers have kept their eyes peeled, opportunities for celebrity encounters have been rife. A parade of daring contemporary directors has passed through the canal-threaded city: Romeo Castellucci,...
Viva la MaMa: Ellen Stewart's Friends, Collaborators, Admirers and "Babies" Remember the Woman Who Invented American Alternative Theatre-And Changed the Face of World Theatre
ELLEN STEWART WAS A GLOBAL CITIZEN BEFORE ANYBODY INVENTED THAT IDENTITY AS A way of being in the world. She staked a powerful claim on multiculturalism, intercultural thinking and multiethnic casting before any of these postures had acquired the patina...
What a Difference a Day Makes
AS A HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT, I HAD A VISION for my life's work that was centered in the idea that international conflict could be reduced if people understood each other's histories, cultural identities and points of view--as expressed through their art...
Word Drunk, World Savvy: For Kate Loewald's Play Company, Producing Plays in Translation Is a Tool of Global Insight
THE PLAY HAILS FROM JAPAN. THE DIRECTOR, actors and nonprofit producer do not. In the spring of 2010, the Play Company of New York City mounted Toshiki Okada's word-drunk play Enjoy in a cleverly unpretentious production that set a benchmark for...