August 26, 2012 |
At 80, South African playwright Athol Fugard is still turning out plays at a rate that would be daunting for a dramatist half his age. A crucial witness to the warping effect of apartheid on his country's soul, Fugard has continued in the post-apartheid era to track the difficult moral journey of characters heeding and resisting the national imperative of reconciliation. His latest play, "The Blue Iris," receiving its U.S. premiere at the Fountain Theatre, is in keeping with the distilled, backward-looking, frankly mournful style that has dominated his late works.
July 5, 2012 |
"Blackbird," Scottish playwright David Harrower's daring two-hander about a young woman who confronts the older man who sexually abused her as a girl, gave Rogue Machine one of its most memorable hits last summer. Would you believe that it was something of a miracle that this highly respected little company was even allowed to produce the play, especially after it became a succès d'estime off-Broadway in a Manhattan Theatre Club production starring Jeff Daniels and Alison Pill?
May 3, 2012 |
Texting and email may have replaced quill and ink in "Cyrano" -- Stephen Sachs' contemporary re-envisioning of Edmond Rostand's classic drama -- but the problematic nature of communication remains a constant. If anything, the theme gains new dimension and impact through the collision of hearing, deaf and online cultures in this inspired and inspiring adaptation's debut co-production from the Fountain Theatre and Deaf West Theatre companies. Performed simultaneously in spoken dialogue and American Sign Language by a mixed ensemble of hearing and deaf actors, Sachs' moving adaptation transposes Rostand's archetypal heroic outsider into a gifted coffeehouse poet whose inferiority complex is rooted in his deafness rather than his perfectly normal nose.
December 19, 2010 |
The word "decline" has cast a dark shadow over more than just America's prosperity. The theater has been in a downward slope since the recession, and only those with their head in the sand could overlook the plummeting number of theatrical offerings, the fall off in institutional ambition, the degeneration of book musicals and the eroded ability of the art form to mirror its own contemporary moment. Was there a drama as revealing of the zeitgeist as the film "The Social Network" or as expansively ruminative about what led us to this current hole as Jonathan Franzen's novel "Freedom"?
October 15, 2010 |
For Athol Fugard , the playwright's pilgrimage can be a long, tortuous slog. But the trek is less daunting and more companionable if that road happens to pass through L.A.'s Fountain Theatre . Since 2000, when the intimate Hollywood playhouse staged the Los Angeles premiere of Fugard's "The Road to Mecca," the 78-year-old South African playwright has regarded the Fountain as something of an artistic home away from home. It will be again starting Saturday, when the Fountain will host the U.S. premiere of Fugard's latest work, "The Train Driver," a succinct, one-act, two-character drama that deals with Fugard's pivotal theme of the last two decades: South Africa's quest to shake off the ghosts of apartheid's dehumanizing legacy.
August 8, 2010
Websites of some of the theaters and theater companies mentioned in the conversation. The Antaeus Company , http://www.antaeus.org Black Dahlia , http://www.thedahlia.com The Blank Theatre Company , http://www.theblank.com Circle X Theatre Co. , http://www.circlextheatre.org Circus Theatricals , http://www.circustheatricals.com City Garage , http://www.citygarage.org Critical Mass Performance Group , http://www.