Feb 6, 2009

Enter the Women

I've got a few features coming up on some Downtown shows that happen to be authored by women: Liz Swados and Erin Courtney's Kaspar Hauser: a foundling's opera at the Flea, which treats a subject that's long fascinated me, and Sheila Callaghan's That Pretty Pretty; Or, The Rape Play. Callaghan revealed that one of her inspirations was a 2005 theater preview in the Times that looked ahead with relish to a season of "men behaving badly" (it was the year of Fat Pig and Hurlyburly), a sentiment echoed in last year's season preview, also in the Times:
For as this season, amply stocked with duplicitous, deranged or deluded males, makes clear, men behaving badly may be a dispiriting spectacle in the public sphere (see Edwards, John), but it almost inevitably makes effective theater.

Inevitably? In any case, it counts as good news that Primary Stages, though not a Broadway house, has announced that its 25th season, starting this coming summer, will spotlight female playwrights: Cusi Cram, with A Lifetime Burning; Lucinda Coxon, with Happy Now? by Lucinda Coxon, and Charlayne Woodard, with Night Watcher by Charlayne Woodard. Times they are a-changin'.

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