David Mamet began writing screenplays in 1981, when he was already a very successful playwright. His experience in Hollywood did not improve the opinion of the human race he had expressed in early plays like "American Buffalo" and "The Water Engine".
In the 1950s, William Inge could be named with Arthur Miller and Tennessee Williams as a leading American playwright. He seemed to be dealing boldly with ordinary Midwestern Americans and their struggles with a society that repressed sex and celebrated material wealth.
'Tis the season of good will to all, and that should especially apply to what we say about a play about Christmas, shouldn't it. So it would be Scrooge-like of me to say that KTK Production's staging of The Best Christmas Pageant Ever is the worst Christmas pageant ever. Because I'm sure it isn't the worst ever.
Something about a family of three sisters must fascinate playwrights, they pop up so often. Patrick Kennedy, the father of three daughters in Rebecca Lenkiewicz's The Night Season, compares his three not to Chekhov's or Wendy Wasserstein's or Beth Henley's three but to King Lear's daughters.
At the turn of the 20th century, radium was celebrated as a miracle drug. We know today that radiation can be useful in treating cancer and other diseases. We also know that radiation can cause cancer and other diseases. Back then, a few successes in treating cancer led to a fad for putting radium in a variety of tonics that were supposed to be good for whatever ailed you.
Somebody at R-S Theatrics likes weird. Last year, they produced a staged reading of Andrew Hinderaker's play Suicide, Incorporated. Now they're doing a fully staged production of Suicide, Incorporated. Actually, it's not that much more fully staged that the previous, pretty fully staged one – well staged in both cases.
A lot of terrific acting happens in English playwright Chloe Moss's This Wide Night on the West End Players Guild's stage in the Union Avenue Christian Church. Things can get pretty intense in the 90 minutes or so of this two-character play.
Jessie Jones, Nicholas Hope, and Jamie Wooten have made careers – one could say an industry – out of writing comedies about an ethnic group that it is safe to laugh at, Southern whites, usually Texans.
Detective-Inspector Frost failed to solve the apparent kidnapping and probable murder of a baby a dozen years ago in a small English village. Now he's returned to Waverton to try to finish the job before he retires. Welcomed on his first visit, now nobody wants him around.
Fences fills the 1950s slot in August Wilson's magnificent creation of plays for each decade of the 20th century. For me, it is one of the best.