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. 24, No. 4, April

20 Questions
Alain Boublil and Claude-Michel Schonberg have crafted heart-twisting musicals from some of history's bloodiest episodes--the aftermath of the French Revolution in Les Miserables, the Vietnam War in Miss Saigon, the Hundred Years' War in Martin Guerre....
A Long Long Career
WILMINGTON, N.C.:"Let me tell you my favorite quote," says William Ivey Long, with a Cheshire-cat grin. "It's from a review by John Simon [about] something Gordon Davidson directed some years ago with Stockard Channing called The Lady and the Clarinet....
Barrie Stavis: 1906-2007
Twenty-nine years ago, I was approached in the lobby at Classic Stage Company and asked if I knew the work of Barrie Stavis. "Lamp at Midnight, Harpers Ferry ... sure," I said, remembering the plays, and that he'd been born in 1906. "He's not still...
Catching Up with Ntozake Shange Her Innovations in Stage Verse and Movement Have Inspired a New Generation
WHAT WAS IT LIKE TO INTERVIEW NTOZAKE SHANGE? For me, it felt like something coming full circle. What we in the hip-hop theatre and spoken word movements owe her is both enormous and obvious: Shange is one of the supreme pioneers of her generation...
Editor's Note
In her inaugural From the Executive Director column in this issue, Teresa Eyring describes how delving into a dusty box of theatre programs, unexpectedly discovered, provoked a flood of art-inflected memories. "With each program, a series of images...
Global Spotlight
Orebro, Sweden SWEDISH THEATRE BIENNIAL: A jury of critics has once again chosen the best Swedish productions from the past two years and given the public five days to see them all. The showcase includes several plays plumbing dark currents of Swedish...
He's Baaack!
At the start of Massacre (Sing to Your Children), Jose Rivera's disturbing new drama, an evil fellow named Joe gets his just deserts: Guilty of abuse, rape and murder, Joe is slaughtered (off stage) by a group of mostly Latino characters in a New England...
If Lear Lived Down the Block
IF THERE WERE AN ELIXIR OF YOUTH, America would no doubt be the first country to sell it in cans. You'd think we all took at face value King Lear's sarcastic remark that "age is unnecessary." But in its latest offering, King Lear: The Storm at Home,...
John Doe-Re-Mi
YOU WOULDN'T KNOW IT FROM ALL THE Lunesta ads, but insomnia has its advantages. Consider the case of lyricist Eddie Sugarman, who normally doesn't have trouble drifting off ("I consider myself borderline narcoleptic"), but who suffered a week of sleeplessness...
Mabou Mines: A Love Story: The Black-Sheep Troupe of the Avant-Garde Is Still Going Strong. So Are Ruth and Lee
* ONE "WHERE IS LEE BREUER?" asks Alanna Heiss, founder of P.S. 1 Contemporary Art Center. "He hasn't arrived," Ruth Maleczech replies. It is 9:23 on a freezing Tuesday night in February at the East Village restaurant Pangea, and the birthday...
Memories in a Box
AT A FEBRUARY FUNDRAISER FOR HISTORY THEATRE in St. Paul, playwright Jeffrey Hatcher asked what my first official act would be as executive director of TCG. I left him in suspense, knowing that I was headed home to write my first column for American...
New Names and Spaces
PORTLAND, ORE.: Portland Center for the Performing Arts is in the midst of a capital campaign to enhance all of its venues, which include an auditorium and a concert hall. This past winter, PCPA re-christened its Theatre Building, which houses three...
News from Theatre Communications Group Available Online
2007 TCG NATIONAL CONFERENCE: WOLE SOYINKA TO SPEAK Playwright, poet, novelist and essayist Wole Soyinka will speak at the TCG National Conference June 7-9 in Minneapolis/St. Paul. The Nigerian-born, Nobel Prize-winning Soyinka has published more...
On the Capriciousness of Critics: Actors Shouldn't See Reviews till after Closing Night, a Veteran Director Asserts. It's Bad Enough That Audiences Read Them
For the last generation or so, many critics have taken to coming to review a late preview performance, rather than the opening. Their reasons for doing so are: (1) to see a typical performance, rather than one hyped up by the singularity of an opening...
Passing Strange: Berkeley Repertory Theatre/the Public Theater
Annie Dorsen, DIRECTOR: Passing Strange is a rock show with a story in the middle. The first principle of design was to make the band the environment. You can see, behind Stew (seated) in the above image, a hole with a drummer in it. Each band member...
Regional Recordings
CHICAGO AND SAN FRANCISCO: New musicals rise within the regional theatre world all the time, but it's rare for them to be captured in a recording studio, at least not till the word "Broadway" can be inserted between "Original" and "Cast." There are...
Socrates Unbound: The Cheeky Philosopher Has His Say Again-In Corporate Training Sessions and Ancient Ruins
Theatre people don't usually need much convincing that the Greeks are still our contemporaries. Everywhere one looks, the ancient plays continue to generate reverence, envy and awe. For the past six years, however, one uniquely obsessed and multi-talented...
The Internationalist
What's That You Say? An interview with the playwright BY KATHRYN WALAT KATHRYN WALAT: Your script begins with its setting: "The Internationalist takes place over a period of about 36 hours in an unidentified or imaginary Central or Eastern...
Un Regalo De Musica Y Teatro Latino
NEW YORK CITY: Are you ready for a fiesta? As part of TeatroStageFest, a two-week festival starting April 30, Puerto Rican singer/songwriter Danny Rivera brings the Latino cause from his heart to the New York stage when he stars in Pregones Theater's...
Where Do We Go from Here? Four Playwrights Anticipate the Seismic Shifts of the New Century
About 100 years ago in Ireland something transpired to renew the Irish theatre--something it desperately needed. William Butler Yeats, an artist we largely know as a poet, co-founded, with Lady Gregory, a major national enterprise: the Abbey Theatre,...