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.

“The Weissensee Saga”

It’s common for the author of historical fiction to want to cram in as many aspects of the period being covered as can be managed. Herman Wouk’s The Winds of War and War and Remembrance moves various branches of “Pug” … Continue reading

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Lee Grant

One of the treats about living where I have (and do) on the upper west side is that, walking my dog, I kept (and keep) running into Lee walking her dog. We always stop and swap stories. One time, I … Continue reading

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SPACE DOGS and ENGLISH

It’s no surprise that American playwrights usually write plays set in America. It is a little surprising that three current off-Broadway plays by American playwrights are, in fact, set outside our borders. I wrote recently about Joshua Harmon’s Prayer for … Continue reading

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ALICE ADAMS — book and film

Finished reading Booth Tarkington’s Alice Adams recently and watched George Stevens’s film adaptation. The racism in the book is dismaying but not entirely surprising for a book that was published in 1921. The good stuff in it is very good … Continue reading

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Thoughts on “Prayer For the French Republic”

At a time when we’ve gotten used to tasty 90-minute hors d’oeuvres, it’s exhilarating to encounter a play with enough on its mind to hold the attention for three hours (including two 10-minute intermissions). Joshua Harmon’s Prayer For the French … Continue reading

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Richard Christiansen

I wrote a piece for American Theatre about the late, great Richard Christiansen, a critic who had a major part in the Chicago theater renaissance.  And also a friend of mine. Here’s the link — Remembering Richard Christiansen

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“Long Day’s Journey Into Night” – sort of

The program that comes with the off-Broadway production at the Minetta Lane Theater says the play on offer is Long Day’s Journey Into Night by Eugene O’Neill. And it’s true that every word spoken on the stage is by O’Neill. … Continue reading

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Thoughts after watching THE VERDICT

Just watched The Verdict for the first time since it came out forty years ago in 1982. Sidney Lumet at the top of his game, a perfect damn script by David Mamet (I can’t say how much it owes to the … Continue reading

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AUTUMN SONATA (2 Bergmans)

Just watched Ingmar Bergman’s Autumn Sonata again (with Ingrid Bergman and Liv Ullmann) for the first time in decades. There are things in it that drive me crazy. The characters explain stuff endlessly in the past tense, and that’s usually … Continue reading

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CULLUD WATTAH and CLYDE’S

My idea was to write a series of plays, each of which would take place in another American city. The stories would be specific to those towns, each arising organically out of the character and history of the location. And … Continue reading

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