The Playwright's Muse

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First Published in 2002. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa company.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
This is a wonderful collection of interviews with 11 Pulitzer Prize-winning dramatists, among them Edward Albee, Tony Kushner, Jonathan Larson, Neil Simon, August Wilson, Horton Foote, and Wendy Wasserstein. As the title suggests, the linking theme is the question of what inspires the dramatist to write, and the interviewers ask pertinent questions about both the playwright and the plays. A separate essay by a scholar or theater artist precedes most of the interviews and serves as a good source of introductory material about the dramatist. One exception is the chapter on Margaret Edson, the author of Wit. Here, comments by the interviewer are interspersed with the interview itself, a technique that works quite well as the playwright's and the interviewer's comments often highlight each other. Edson stands out in this collection for two reasons: she is a one-play wonder, and she has no intention of leaving her job teaching kindergarten in the Atlanta school system. Perhaps because she does not consider herself a professional playwright, as do the other ten writers, hers is one of the most interesting chapters. Recommended for all academic libraries and libraries with significant theater collections. Susan L. Peters, Univ. of Texas, Galveston Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780815337805
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 7/28/2002
  • Series: Studies in Modern Drama Series
  • Pages: 320
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Joan Herrington is Director of Women's Theatre and Associate Professor of Theatre at Western Michigan University. She is author of I Ain't Sorry For Nothin' I Done: August Wilson's Process of Playwriting.

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Table of Contents

Introduction 1
"Not Having it All": Wendy Wasserstein's Uncommon Women 17
Interview with Wendy Wasserstein 45
Birth, Baptism, and Resurrection: August Wilson and the Blues 53
Interview with August Wilson 71
Broadway Boundaries: Neil Simon and Popular Culture 79
Interview with Neil Simon 91
Lessons from Our First Frontier 99
Interview with Robert Schenkkan 121
Kushner's Arcades: "The Borders are Full of Holes" 127
Interview with Tony Kushner 145
"A's" Last Memory: Contextualizing Albee's Three Tall Women 159
Interview with Edward Albee 175
Horton Foote: Mystic of the American Theatre 181
Interview with Horton Foote 207
Jonathan Larson Rocks Broadway 211
Conversations with Jonathan Larson 225
Seducing the Audience: Politics in the Plays of Paula Vogel 231
Interview with Paula Vogel 253
Margaret Edson: Playwright in Spite of Herself 261
Donald Margulies: From Boitschick to Man 279
Select Bibliography 293
Contributors 301
Index 304
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