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. 25, No. 6, July-August

20 Questions
Film and theatre actor PETER DINKLAGE has been seen on Manhattan stages in the title role of Richard III at the Public Theater, as Torvald in Mabou Mines Dollhouse and in Jonathan Marc Sherman's Things We Want for the New Group. This July he takes...
A Mixtape about Faith: Humana Playwrights Pose the Question: What Do You Believe In?
This review begins in the middle. I am in love (I think) I've come upon what seems to me one of the most piercing, ambitious and poetically expansive new plays of this globally conscious century--but it's difficult to share the depth of my emotional...
A Not-So-Impossible Dream: How One Theatre Company Is Cultivating a Fountain of Youth-And Grooming a Future Pool of Subscribers
THE CHALLENGE: My mother recently went to see Man of La Mancba. When I asked her how the show was, she didn't comment on the Cervantes-spin-off of a story or the actors' vocal prowess. Instead, she proclaimed, "Your father and I were the youngest people...
Bard Merger
SEATTLE: The 17-year-old Seattle Shakespeare Company has historically served its patrons September through June. Over the past 15 years, about six miles to the east, another company called Wooden O has performed free outdoor Shakespeare every summer...
Border Crossing: An Interview with the Playwright
JAVIER MALPICA'S Papaesta en la Altantida (Our Dad Is in Atlantis, translated by Jorge Ignacio Cortinas) is a deceptively simple two-hander about two boys who are left behind to fend mostly for themselves when their father crosses the U.S.-Mexico border....
Communing with the Enemy: Take a Critic to Lunch? Sure, If She's Not Sleeping in a Coffin by Day
"H as anybody ever seen a dramatic critic in the daytime?" wrote novelist-playwright P.G. Wodehouse. "Of course not. They come out after dark, up to no good." Having spent a large chunk of my life writing about the-atre for various publications,...
Dream Me Up, Sailor
READY FOR SOME EPISODIC epic theatre? Check out Dream Sailors at Washington, D.C.'s renegade Rorschach Theatre, a company with its sights set on "challenging the way people experience theatre." The stage serial, which begins July 17 with a new hourlong...
Editor's Note
Nothing gets theatre people talking like the topic of criticism. American Theatre's February '08 special section "The Future of Criticism"--headlined by a landmark discussion between three iconic American critics, Eric Bentley, Robert Brustein and...
End-of-Season Kudos: Many NYC Winners Took Root in the Regions
BY the look of this season's awards tally, the best and the brightest of Broadway were birthed in the regional theatre. While Tony results weren't available at press time, the Steppenwolf Theatre Company juggernaut, August: Osage County, had already...
For the People, by the People: Annie Dorsen Puts 'Democracy' on the Market-And the Public Buys In
The first word of the performance is "contrary." That's it. Just a man striding center stage to state: "Contrary." This is quickly followed by a woman reciting from a Staples coupon, acerbic comments about Judd Apatow and Rudy Giuliani, manic crawling,...
Goodbye, Provincetown Playhouse?
NEW YORK CITY: This past May, New York University proposed to demolisha row of four buildings and a 170-seat theatre on MacDougal Street where the Provincetown Playhouse first produced the plays of Eugene O'Neill. NYU's plan is to redevelop the brick...
How Theatre Saved America, Part 1
Every so often, TCG is contacted by a reporter who questions how common it is for theatres in America to have resident acting companies. The purpose of such a call is usually to confirm that there are just a handful. Sometimes the idea is to highlight...
Interpretive Dance
HEART-POUNDING ATTRACTION, intense all-night conversations--Aditi Brennan Kapil's Love Person captures the giddiness of new love affairs. But the play is even more eloquently realistic about the wear and tear that time wreaks on relationships. The...
Iron Mermaiden: Bedlam Theatre
Kristi Ternes, DIRECTOR AND WRITER: Iron Mermaiden is set in a genetically modified future, when the human genome is up for sale and life is created, bought and sold with little regard for individuality or humanity. In the first of the play's two very...
London's Thumb Wars: A Theatre Capital at Odds with Its Critics
Britain's Sunday Times Culture, the closest equivalent this country has to the New York Times Arts and Leisure section, favors comely young women for the cover of its weekly magazine--Jessica Alba or Keira Knightley--or, perhaps, a time-tested male...
Looking Both Ways: Gina Gionfriddo, Rolin Jones and Adam Rapp on Traveling the Two-Way Street between Theatre and Screen
THE siren song of film and television--leeching the theatre's best and brightest--has generated quite a bit of hand-wringing, especially when it comes to playwriting. Theresa Rebeck famously threw down the gauntlet in 1995, issuing her opinion in the...
Marco Barricelli Star Turn: Hamlet and Heathcliff Are on Hold While the Actor Takes the Reins in Santa Cruz
When, in April 2005, Marco Barricelli announced that he was resigning his position as one of American Conservatory Theater's four core acting company members, the San Francisco arts community went into shock. The actor's decision to give up one of...
Meet Me in Hong Kong: Rich Mix at Arts Fest Honors Tradition Yet Pushes Limits on Sex and Language
The monthlong Hong Kong Arts Festival has been going strong for 36 years--so strong, in fact, that by this year's opening day, Feb. 14, more than 90 percent of the tickets for the event's 31 shows had already been sold. Of these productions, 22 were...
Oni Faida Lampley: 1959-2008
TWELVE YEARS AGO I met Oni Faida Lampley when she read one of my plays at the New York Public Library of the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center. Her truthfulness and bravery as an actress was matched by a sublime wit, and I was instantly drawn to...
Paul Scofield: 1922-2008
"THE LAST greatest of the greats," Felicity Kendal said. "The best there has ever been," Richard Eyre remarked. "One of the greatest actors in the world," Simon Callow observed. These were among the outpourings of peer tributes to Paul Scofield, the...
Robert Alexander: 1929-2008
THERE ARE ARTISTS who make light. Not just with batteries, bulbs and candles, but by opening windows into the souls of those in the dark. Robert Alexander was a light-maker. [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Bob was the creator of the Living Stage Theatre...
Smoke Effects
For playwrights, from Nilo Cruz to Noel Coward, having a figure on stage light a cigarette has been in strumental in setting the scene, revealing character and sparking interactions. But as public smoking becomes more restricted, the role of smoking...
The Innovation Imperative: TCG's Fall Forum Zeroes in on How Theatres Bring New Ideas to Life
INNOVATION is fresh thinking that happens at all levels of an organization. It's not just the big and scary risks. It can be as simple and free as marketing on Facebook, reimagining how theatre spaces welcome the local community, or developing an entrepreneurial...
The Martin Chronicles: Williamstown's New Honcho Nicholas Martinis as Theatre-Besotted at 70 as He Was at 9
NICHOLAS MARTIN found his calling relatively late in life. Not his calling to the theatre: That came at a very early age--nine, Martin figures--when his parents took the youngster to see Oklaboma! on Broadway and planted the seeds of an obsession with...
Windfalls for New Writers
ASHLAND, ORE., NEW HAVEN, CONN., AND NEW YORK CITY: During the past two seasons, many large theatre institutions are getting good traction--and large sums--by initiating new programming initiatives devoted exclusively to commissioning new and emerging...