Author Archives: dgsweet

About dgsweet

I write for and about theater. I spent a number of years as a resident playwright of a theater in Chicago which put up 14 of my plays, and I still think of Chicago as my primary theatrical home, though I actually live in New York. I serve on the Council of the Dramatists Guild. Between plays, I write books, most notably SOMETHING WONDERFUL RIGHT AWAY (about Second City), THE O'NEILL (about the O'Neill Center) and THE DRAMATIST'S TOOLKIT (a text on playwriting craft). I also occasionally perform a solo show called YOU ONLY SHOOT THE ONES YOU LOVE. I enjoy visiting theaters outside of New York. I can be reached at dgsweet@aol.com.

New York Through Kids’ Eyes

One of the benefits of marrying Kristine twelve years ago (July 15 was our anniversary) is that I acquired, with no effort, six grandchildren. Four of them visited us this past week.  Whenever you host visitors, you can’t help but … Continue reading

Posted in New York, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

From “Crime in the Streets” to “West Side Story”

Watched a clumsy but fascinating film called Crime in the Streets. It started as a 1955 live TV play by Reginald Rose presented by the Elgin Hour, directed by Sidney Lumet. A young John Cassavetes starred as Frankie, a member … Continue reading

Posted in 1950s TV Drama, Broadway, film adaptation, Golden Age of Television, movies, New York | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Ride Share

In 1992, a former cab driver named Will Kern drew on his experience to whip up a bracing entertainment called Hellcab. An actor played the driver and an ensemble of six played something in the neighborhood of 30 passengers who … Continue reading

Posted in Chicago theater, drama, film adaptation, playwriting, television | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Living Up to the Dream

I’m close to the end of Bauhaus – A New Era, a German TV miniseries that tells a story of Walter Gropius and his relationship with a student, Dörte Helm, against the background of the arts school Gropius founded in … Continue reading

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Hemingway

I think the first time I became aware of Ernest Hemingway was in the wake of his death. In 1961, my dad took me by L to the Bryn Mawr, a discount movie theater on Chicago’s north side, to see … Continue reading

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Remembering Preston Jones

In the mid-1970s, I was assigned a piece by an in-flight magazine distributed on American Airlines. The story focused on three playwrights who first came to the theater community’s attention in regional theaters. The three playwrights were David Mamet, Marsha … Continue reading

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Encountering Rose Franken

Continuing to wander through obscure corners of American playwriting, I have stumbled across a forgotten phenomenon.  A writer named Rose Franken created a character who appeared first in a series of stories for Redbook, then in a series of eight … Continue reading

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Both Your Houses

I was determined to witness the moment when Joe Biden overtook the Orange Thug in Pennsylvania. I plopped down on the sofa in the living room under the illusion that this might happen at 2AM (which is about the time … Continue reading

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Election Day Distraction

Don’t know if it’s true for anybody else, but I’m just trying to get this day out of the way. Latest avoidance tactic, an hour or so at the City Diner with my dog at my feet, reading some chapters … Continue reading

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Two Contrasting Plays

I continue my casual tromp through plays of the past, alternating reading from an anthology of early Pulitzer Prize-winners and an anthology of postwar African-American plays. The two most recent plays I’ve encountered, by coincidence, are about flawed Black authority … Continue reading

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