Magazine article Variety

An Unendangered Species

Magazine article Variety

An Unendangered Species

Article excerpt

PLAYTIME

Back around the turn of the millennium, it was not unusual for Broadway to go for months without a new play on its many boards. The rise of the nonprofits helped there, but the oftraised fear was that the non-musical would be relegated to the very limited non-commercial run.

Recent seasons have proven the doomsayers wrong; and currently, no fewer than five new plays currently on Broadway made the leap from to commercial stints: Jon Robin Baitz's "Other Desert Cities," Rick Elice's "Peter and the Starcatchers," David Ivés' "Venus in Fur," Bruce Norris' "Clybourne Park" and Nicky Silver's "The Lyons."

That's more new plays than graced some entire Broadway seasons back in the 1980s and '90s. And it doesn't count that, rarest of legit breed, the commercial world preem of a play on Broadway. Theresa Rebeck and Erie Simonson jumped in without a nonprofit safety net, giving ILS, respectively, "Seminar" and "Magic/Bird."

Another world premiere, but under the auspices of the nonprofit MTC, is "The Columnist," David Auburn's long-awaited follow-up to "Proof. …

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