Sep 21, 2011

Not Just the Usual Guardian Snobbery

David Cote, a.k.a. Benedict Arnold (kidding!), has a thoughtful piece in today's Guardian about why American companies can't compete with the UK's far-reaching National Theatre. And it's more than just money: It's also the artistic leadership, stupid. Some hard words not only for the usual suspects (Roundabout!) but also Lincoln Center (apparently the permanent stable of the National's War Horse) and the Public, both of which, Cote concedes...
...offer solid work every season. But how many of their world premieres have international reach? Why aren't they commissioning world-class plays that the National or the Royal Court might want to import, as we have done with War Horse? Where is the play about the BP Gulf oil spill? Where is the play from inside the Tea Party? Where is the bold revival of Strange Interlude? Where is a sprawling historical comedy about utopian communities in America? John Guare's A Free Man of Color – a dazzling piece set in 19th-century New Orleans, produced last year at LCT – is the exception that proves the rule.

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