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. 10, No. 7-8, July-August

A Fire in a Crowded Theatre: Anna Deavere Smith Relives the Los Angeles Riots
Interviewing Anna Deavere Smith is intimidating. The 42-year-old African-American playwright and actor faces a journalist's taperecorder armed with a casual confidence learned from conducting literally hundreds of interviews. No doubt she's heard...
An Unfinished Life; a Deadly Shooting in Dallas Stirs Concerns about Artists' Safety
Robert Smith's desk in his Manhattan advertising agency office is cluttered with papers, a coffee mug with a cartoon of a golfer, and an assortment of theatrical head shots of his late son, an actor. Months after 21-year-old Rob Smith was shot and...
Arcadia
With a quicksilver irony perhaps uniquely suited to Tom Stoppard, the British theatre's leading intellectual gamesman aims for the head while writing most memorably for - and about - the heart. Moral philosophy, quantum mechanics, even Fermat's last...
Art and Life Intersect before Congress
Emotional testimony on the value of art in urban U.S., war-ranged Bosnia Congressional hearings are not known for their drama-not even the annual hearings on the National Endowment for the Arts before the House Appropriations Interior Subcommittee,...
Censorship, Cant and the Theatre
Are we, the American theatre, the openminded bastion of free expression we think we are? Back in the 60s, Royal Court director William Gaskill said he'd produce a right-wing play if he could only find one; which of us American theatre play-pickers...
David Sedaris: Welcome to the Talent Family
I'll do anything for attention," David Sedaris says with his mischievous smile. Indeed, these days he's getting plenty of it. After he began reading excerpts from his diary on National Public Radio last winter, there was a barrage of inquiries from...
Devil's Food
What becomes a legend most? Adaptability. Take the example of Faust, one of the most resilient of the superlegends with an uncanny knack for reinventing himself to suit the changing times. The historic Johann Faust lived in 16th-century Germany during...
Intruding on Lillian
It's springtime for everyone in Cambridge-except Elaine Stritch. The seasoned actress hasn't seen much of the sky over the Charles River since she arrived at American Repertory Theatre to rehearse Cakewalk, Peter Feibleman's semi-autobiographical play...
Jose Rivera: We All Think Magically in Our Sleep
In Jose Rivera's play Marisol, a band of guerrilla angels has decided that God is an old, ineffectual buffoon who, for the greater good of the universe, must be assassinated. Angel emissaries are sent to Earth to recruit soldiers for the coup. Human...
Marisol
About the Play Marisol - completed in 1990 while Rivera was writer-in-residence at the Royal Court Theatre, London - received its world premiere March 13, 1992 under the direction of Marcus Stern at the 16th Annual Humana Festival of New American Plays...
Nice Guys Finish (Last)(first)
Where did luck, pluck and virtue get James Lapine? it got him to Broadway, as the author and director of Sunday in the Park with George, Into the Woods and Falsettos, and to Hollywood, as the director of Impromptu and Life with Mikey. But where...
On Twilight
My show is named Twilight. Partly it is because I was so taken by the young Crip who is working on the truce. His nom de guerre is Twilight. Also the upheaval took place at twilight. Twilight is a time when objects are obscured by the coming darkness....
Protest Greets Prince's Showboat in Toronto
In the first act of Showboat, the 1927 musical by Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein, Queenie, the cook, upbraids Captain Andy Hawkes because he just doesn't know how to sell tickets to the local black community. She then proceeds to rally black patronage...
Return to Paton's Place
There's no doubt about Frank Galati's regard for Alan Paton's Cry, the Beloved Country. Galati, whose stage version of the novel opened at Chicago's Goodman Theatre in June, calls it a South African national epic and compares it to The Grapes of Wrath,...
Ronnie Gilbert: Resurrecting Mother Jones
Labor leader Mother Jones was 100 years old when she died. "Or thereabouts," Ronnie Gilbert says with an equivocating gesture. "She was quite a fibber." Mother Jones, the one-woman show that Gilbert wrote and stars in, is a tribute to the rambunctious,...
They Broke the Mold
When the history of the performing arts in 20th-century America is written, a very long chapter will be devoted to the extraordinary accomplishments of W. McNeil Lowry. In his role as the first director of the Ford Foundation's Arts and Humanities...
Vietnam Shadows
Over the years, three of my plays - The Basic Training of Paulo Hummel, Sticks and Bones and Streamers - have come to be referred to as "The Vietnam Trilogy." But in my mind these three were never a trilogy. If there was a trilogy, it consisted of...
What Makes Sharon Ott Run?
It is a late weekday morning on a side street in grungy downtown Berkeley, Calif. As a heavy rain falls, street people in makeshift rough weathergear aggressively troll the block for spare change. But neither rain nor panhandlers deter the dozen...
Wilson, Danton and Me
This season at the Alley Theatre in Houston, Robert Wilson loosed his imagination on Danton's Death, Georg Buchner's brilliant descant on morality, meaning and meaninglessness. Set during, the French Revolution's Reign of Terror, the play sets up an...