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. 23, No. 1, January

20 Questions
SARAH JONES dazzles audiences with the dead-on character work of one-woman shows such as Surface Transit and Bridge & Tunnel. [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] The latter ran Off Broadway in 2004, was further developed last year at Berkeley Repertory...
Amy Morton & Monica Payne: What's More Indispensable Than an Adviser In-the-Know?
Amy Morton, an ensemble member of Chicago's Steppenwolf Theatre Company, first met actor Monica Payne in 1999, when Payne was her student in Steppenwolf 's summer training intensive. Payne was six years out of under-grad, doing her best to navigate...
A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings: Center Theatre Group/P.L.A.Y
Opposite page, Dreya Weber as the Spiderwoman in A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings by Nilo Cruz, based on a story by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, which ran Nov. 13-Dec. 18 at the Kirk Douglas Theatre in Los Angeles. Directed by Andrew Tsao, scenic design...
Costa Mesa, Calif.: How Hedda Got Her Groove Back
Jeff Whitty is perpetually obsessed, and it's a good thing, too. That's how his plays get written. [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Take The Further Adventures of Hedda Gabler, Whitty's comic fantasia on the theme of literary immortality that begins performances...
Editor's Note
If you're like me, the extended discussion of theatrical mentoring in this month's Approaches to Theatre Training special section will set you to thinking about personal and professional relationships, past and present, that have had an impact on your...
Hollywood Confidential: Does the Famous Sign Cast a Shadow or a Starry Light on L.A. Theatre? It Depends
An 800-pound gorilla has been stalking theatre in Los Angeles. Its name is Hollywood. [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] For years, theatre in and around L.A. has operated in the closest possible proximity to the film and TV business--the Industry, in local...
Howard Stein: Tough Love for Writers; He Asks: What Is the Bird You're Trying to Catch in the Net of Your Play?
"The playwright has the luxury of re-creating a human experience that will illuminate and reflect for the audience the energy and the beauty of a life being lived." Howard Stein said this, and he ought to know. [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] In a career...
How to Talk about Success: Discussions in the Board Room Can Skirt the Elusive but Essential Subject of Art. Three Artistic Directors Tell How They Deal with It
This past November, TCG convened three artistic directors to speak at its Tall Forum 2005 in New York City, titled "Art in the Board Room." The topic was how to define artistic success and evaluate creativity--and how those discussions could be shared...
January: Almanac
85 YEARS AGO (1921) Carol Charming is born in Seattle. She will go on to achieve musical-theatre legend status, appearing in such shows as Gentlemen Prefer Blondes and Hello, Dolly! 70 YEARS AGO (1936) Elmer Rice resigns his post as director...
Jules Fisher & Peggy Eisenhauer: She Admired His Work from Afar as a Teenager. Now They've Partnered for 20 Years
Most mentorships end after a few months or years, with mentor and protege continuing on in their respective careers. But for acclaimed lighting designers Jules Fisher and Peggy Eisenhauer, six years of apprenticeship eventually blossomed into a full-fledged...
Karen Zacarias: A Writer's Tightrope; She's in the Family Business, but Goes about It Her Own Way
Karen Zacarias is the founder and artistic director of Young Playwrights' Theater, an award-winning company that has worked with students in Washington, D.C-area schools since 1995 to enhance literacy, spark creativity and resolve conflicts through...
New York City: I Dream of Lorca
THE CATALAN ACTRESS MARGARITA Xirgu was performing Yerma when she learned of Federico Garcia Lorca's death. It was August of 1936. At 38, Lorca had been executed at Ainadamar, or "fountain of tears," an act that presaged the thousands of killings that...
One on One, Face to Face: As Mentoring Gains Fresh Currency, New Programs Inside and outside the Academy Are Redefining Its Mission and Roles
Every so often, a buzzword du jour grips the American theatre. One of the surest signs that a particular concept has taken hold of the imagination is that key phrases--"organic process," "multimedia work," "ensemble theatre," "cultural diversity" or...
Paul Steinberg & Emily Phillips: A Designer-in-Training Absorbs European Influences
Paul Steinberg, a set and costume designer and a master teacher in the Design for Stage and Film Department at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts, mentored the set designer Emily Phillips as part the NEA/TCG Career Development Program for...
Robert Leonard & Michael Rohd: Even a Continent Apart, They Confer about What Matters
In 1972 Robert Leonard founded the community-focused Road Company in Johnson City, Tenn., and served as artistic director until it folded in 1998. He now heads the MFA program in directing and public dialogue at Virgina Tech, which has only one student...
Russell Vandenbrouke & Susan Booth: Thumbs Up for Access, Equality and the Socratic Approach
Russell Vandenbroucke was surprised to learn that artistic director Susan Booth of Atlanta's Alliance Theatre considered him her mentor. Their relationship sprang up informally in the early 1990s when Booth was Vandenbroucke's student at Northwestern...
Sam Woodhouse & Delicia Turner Sonnenberg: A Protege's Fresh Perspective Can Enlighten a Mentor
Preparing a young artist for the full mantle of artistic directorship is no easy task, but through a mentorship with TCG's New Generations Program, San Diego Repertory Theatre artistic director Sam Woodhouse helped protege Delicia Turner Sonnenberg...
Space Dish
ACROSS THE COUNTRY: Some theatres are on the move, while others have set down roots. This past November the Barrington Stage Company of Sheffield, Mass., began renovations on its new downtown Pittsfield home, the Berkshire Music Hall, which is scheduled...
Stage Partners: The Varieties of Theatrical Mentoring; Experienced Mentors Share Notes-And Spark a Spate of Provocative Questions
The word "mentor" comes from Homer's Odyssey. As Odysseus was preparing to fight the Trojan War, he realized he was leaving behind his only heir--his son Telemachus. Since "Tellie" (as he was probably known to his buddies) was only a teenager, and...
The Essentials
Those of you who have been TCG members or have been reading American Theatre for the past eight years will remember the emphasis we have placed on core values--that handful of essential values that define an organization, that will be pursued every...
Under the Radar Goes Global
NEW YORK CITY: Appropriately enough, Mark Russell didn't go through the usual channels and the official agencies. When he was scouting for the international edition of Under the Radar 2006, a celebrated five-day festival of contemporary cutting-edge...
Woodie King Jr. & Rajendra Ramoon Maharaj: Re-Energizing the Struggle to Create Exciting Theatre for Black Audiences
Theatre legend Woodie King Jr. met his protege Rajendra Ramoon Maharaj 10 years ago--they were sitting next to each other in class, the oldest and youngest students in the MFA directing program at Brooklyn College. In Maharaj, King saw the seeds for...
Yussef El Guindi: Are We Being Followed? His Play about Post-9/11 Arab-American Anxiety Strikes a Nerve
Behind many an overnight theatrical success stands a veteran playwright who has paid years of dues. Yussef El Guindi can tell you all about that. [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] The Seattle-based author has spent well over a decade toiling as a struggling...