Category Archives: Broadway

“American Buffalo” on Broadway

In 2001, I served on a grand jury. At one point, an ADA played for us a recording from a wiretap. It was a conversation between two members of a violent drug gang. One was assigning the other to kill … 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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Sondheim

In 1966, ABC decided to try to change its image. It had a reputation for dumb shows with scantily-clad women and car chases. Someone at the network decided they were going to prove they could do quality, too. Thus was … Continue reading

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Fairycakes, Thoughts of a Colored Man, Chicken and Biscuits

It could be that, after months of having to watch actors in two dimensions on screens, I am so grateful to be in the company of life-sized human beings that I’m in a glass half-full mode. I have seen a … Continue reading

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Returning to the Scene

To be simultaneously separated by masks (I wear two) and joined in responding with laughter with hundreds of others is to experience the contradictions of going to the theater these days.  Of course, you can’t see the mouths, but maybe … Continue reading

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Men in White, Sidney Kingsley, and Ancillary Thoughts

I recently read Sidney Kingsley’s play, Men in White (1933), and last night I watched the 1934 film adaptation directed by Richard Boleslawski. (Interesting that Boleslawski directed the film version of a work that had been directed on Broadway by … Continue reading

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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

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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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