Cover image for The playwright's voice : American dramatists on memory, writing, and the politics of culture
The playwright's voice : American dramatists on memory, writing, and the politics of culture
Savran, David, 1950-
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Theatre Communications Group ; St. Paul, MN : Distributed to the book trade by Consortium Book Sales and Distribution, 1999.
Physical Description:
xxi, 357 pages : portraits ; 23 cm
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PS352 .P575 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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This new volume of interviews with contemporary playwrights attests to the fact the dramatic art is alive and well in America and celebrates the art and talent of fifteen of the theatre's most important artists. In extensive interviews, they discuss their work, influences and their craft and how the art form relates to our cultural heritage, as well as the state of theatre-its-meaning and purposes as we approach the 21st Century. David Savran lays out their remarkable achievements and provides telling insights to their work in his substantial introductions to each interview.

Interviews with: Edward Albee
Jon Robin Baitz
Philip Kan Gotanda
Holly Hughes
Tony Kushner
Terrence McNally
Suzan-Lori Parks
Jos#65533; Rivera
Ntozake Shange
Nicky Silver
Anna Deavere Smith
Paula Vogel
Wendy Wasserstein
Mac Wellman and George C. Wolfe.

Author Notes

David Savran has published widely on American theatre, film and popular culture. His journalistic work includes a previous book of interviews, In Their Own Words: Contemporary American Playwrights, also published by TCG. His most recent works of cultural theory are Communists, Cowboys and Queers: The Politics of Masculinity in the Work of Arthur Miller and Tennessee Williams and Taking It Like a Man: White Masculinity, Masochism and Contemporary American Culture. He is Professor of English at Brown University.

Reviews 1

Booklist Review

The head of a Canadian university's drama department interviews 20 playwrights about the progress of their careers, their working methods, and their opinions on the state of American theater. He's picked a stellar 20 that includes David Mamet, David Rabe, Marsha Norman, John Guare, Christopher Durang, Lanford Wilson, Charles Fuller, August Wilson, and Stephen Sondheim. Although he intimates in his introduction that the political and social awareness of contemporary theater was his primary motivation in undertaking the interviews, he never badgers his subjects about their views. He doesn't have to, given such respondents to his questioning as Wallace Shawn (author of Aunt Dan and Lemon), Luis Valdez (Zoot Suit), the San Francisco Mime Troupe's Joan Holden, and Emily Mann (Execution of Justice, about the trial of Dan White). The whole project testifies mightily to the romping vitality of today's theater. Savran precedes each interview with a brief critique of its subject's work. RO.

Table of Contents

David Savran
Introduction: The Haunted Stagep. xiii
Edward Albeep. 1
Jon Robin Baitzp. 25
Philip Kan Gotandap. 43
Holly Hughesp. 63
Tony Kushnerp. 87
Terrence McNallyp. 119
Suzan-Lori Parksp. 139
Jose Riverap. 165
Ntozake Shangep. 189
Nicky Silverp. 213
Anna Deavere Smithp. 237
Paula Vogelp. 263
Wendy Wassersteinp. 289
Mac Wellmanp. 311
George C. Wolfep. 339