The New School for Drama Announces Arts Integrity Initiative

February 13th, 2015 § 0 comments § permalink

No, I’m sorry, it’s not a blog post; it’s a press release. But if you’ll read on, I hope you’ll understand why I’ve placed it here, and indulge me this once. – Howard NEW YORK (February 12, 2014) – The New School for Drama (Pippin Parker, Director) announces the launch of the Arts Integrity Initiative, a new project aimed at supporting and protecting the work of artists at every level of society and production. Under the leadership of arts administrator, writer and advocate Howard Continue reading...

Why David Adjmi’s “3C” Still Has No Company

February 10th, 2015 § 1 comment § permalink

  Seen any good productions of David Adjmi’s play 3C lately? Sorry, that’s a trick question with a self-evident answer: of course you haven’t. That’s because in the two and a half years since it premiered at New York’s Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, no one has seen a production of 3C because no one is allowed to produce it, or publish it. Why, you ask? Because a company called DLT Entertainment doesn’t want you to. 3C is an alternate universe look at the 1970s sitcom Continue reading...

Alone At The Audience Engagement Event

February 9th, 2015 § 10 comments § permalink

When I first started going to theatre in my teens, I loved attending post-performance discussions and special seminars and panels about plays. They were my education, my chance to learn from artists about how and why they did what they did. I was so fond of the form, that I began moderating these kinds of talks at my college performing arts center when I was only 19, leading off with JoAnne Akalaitis and Athol Fugard in my first year. Once I began working at theatres, I’d pitch in when a literary Continue reading...

‘Almost, Maine’ Asserts Itself In Hickory NC, Joining Past Precedents

January 21st, 2015 § 4 comments § permalink

There were, in my estimation, many interesting people at the first performance of Almost, Maine in Hickory NC this past Thursday night. To begin with, there was the author, John Cariani, who had come out to support the production, something he can’t do very often given how frequently his show is produced around the country. There was Jack Thomas, who produced the New York City premiere of Almost, Maine a decade ago. There was the doctor who had helped to found OutRight Youth of Catawba Valley, Continue reading...

Of Vagina Monologues And Dialogues, On Stage And On Campus

January 17th, 2015 § 4 comments § permalink

“I hope that The Vagina Monologues is a point of departure – it’s not a panacea, it’s not the only play, it’s not the definitive play. It’s a play, it’s an offering.” Those are the words of Eve Ensler, author of The Vagina Monologues, spoken in the wake of the controversy that has arisen over the decision by the campus theatre group at Mount Holyoke College to abandon its annual production of The Vagina Monologues in favor of a newly written student work that is, in their judgment, Continue reading...

Down The Rabbit Hole With Meryl Streep, Kate Burton & More

January 4th, 2015 § 0 comments § permalink

One of the great pleasures of a long holiday period, with one's office is closed for an extended time, is the freedom to go exploring, be it in life or online, guilt-free (or at least relatively so). That’s exactly what happened when I spotted a single tweet from the New York Post’s film critic, Lou Lumenick, who I’ve found to be a terrific and entertaining source of film knowledge and trivia. Lumenick’s timing, of course, is particularly apt, as the tweet led to a complete online video Continue reading...

Of Censorship, Schools, Musicals & Authors’ Rights: My Top Posts of 2014

December 29th, 2014 § 1 comment § permalink

Are these my “best” blog posts of 2014? I couldn’t say. All I know is that they’re my most read, from a year in which page views on my site more than doubled over 2013. Certainly 2014 was a year in which my writing found more focus, and whether the most-read posts bear out readers’ interest in that focus, or are simply a byproduct of a somewhat narrower range of subjects, I also don’t know. But if you’ve only discovered me part way through the year, or only read me sporadically, Continue reading...

Timeline: Ari Roth’s Firing From Washington DC’s Theater J

December 21st, 2014 § 4 comments § permalink

I have never attended Theater J in Washington DC. I have become increasingly aware of its work as controversy over that work has risen in recent years, while at the same time I have become aware of the high regard in which the company and its longtime artistic director, Ari Roth, are held by many theatre professionals I admire and call my friends. That Roth was fired this week after nearly two decades is simultaneously shocking and wholly unsurprising, as the theatre seems to have been on a Continue reading...

Falling For “Almost, Maine” in North Carolina in January

December 19th, 2014 § 0 comments § permalink

Many of you already know the story of the Maiden High School production of John Cariani’s Almost, Maine, shuttered by school officials this fall due to the content of a single scene in which two men discover that they love one another. The cancellation rightly got a great deal of attention, not least because Almost, Maine is the most popular new play done in high schools nationally, a widely accepted work that hit a wall in one North Carolina town due to the school administration caving in to Continue reading...

It’s Only A Movie, Until It’s More

December 18th, 2014 § 0 comments § permalink

the interview poster As the Sony hacking case has played out over the past several weeks, it’s a story that has been relegated mostly to the business pages and, simultaneously, the gossip industry. With no one explicitly claiming responsibility for the breach of the entertainment giant’s computer system, the focus has been more on the corporate ramifications, placing it in business reports, and the stream of buzzworthy stories including the e-mails between Amy Pascal and Scott Rudin and the pontifications of Aaron Continue reading...