Peter Gomes on the Colbert Report

September 18, 2008

If you’ve already seen Let Me Down Easy you’ll know that one of the characters portrayed by Anna Deavere Smith is Peter Gomes, the Minister of Harvard’s Memorial Church.

Peter appeared on The Colbert Report on Monday evening, and gave a hilarious and outrageous interview to Stephen Colbert.  If you missed it, you’ll find it here.


Introducing Endgame

June 9, 2008

Samuel Beckett’s Endgame is one of the most beautiful, enigmatic, and absurdly funny plays of the twentieth century.  It is built as a kind of riddle, in which many meanings can be found – or, Beckett would probably prefer to say, no meaning. Read the rest of this entry »

Introducing The Seagull

June 5, 2008

Hungarian director János Szász has been a favorite with A.R.T. audiences since 2001, when he dazzled us with his breathtaking production of Mother Courage.  Since then he has staged spectacular versions of Marat/Sade, Uncle Vanya, and Desire Under the Elms, always using the cavernous Loeb Stage to eye-popping effect.

Read the rest of this entry »

Introducing Aurélia’s Oratorio

June 3, 2008

One of my earliest and happiest memories as a child in London was our annual visit to the Cirque Imaginaire, or “imaginary circus.”

 Not really a circus so much as a fanciful show of acrobatics and illusion, it was breathtaking and magical. Read the rest of this entry »

Introducing The Communist Dracula Pageant

May 27, 2008

Anne Washburn is one of my favorite young American playwrights.  In plays such as The Internationalist, The Ladies, and Apparition, she has revealed wonderfully theatrical imagination, far removed from the realism and family dramas that currently dominate American and British playwriting. 

Anne’s plays are purely theatrical; it’s hard to imagine them adapted as scripts for film or television.  She delights in stage illusion, in ghosts, fantasies, and figments of our imagination.  Her style reminds me somewhat of early Caryl Churchill, and she has something of Tony Kushner’s epic and historical sweep, but ultimately her voice is unique. Read the rest of this entry »

Introducing Let Me Down Easy

May 21, 2008

Anna Deavere Smith needs little introduction to A.R.T. audiences; many of you probably remember her electrifying performance in Fires in the Mirror, or encountered her during the multi-year Institute on Arts and Civic Dialogue.  (You’ll also recognize her as Nancy McNally, National Security Advisor on The West Wing.) 


Anna is one of the country’s greatest writers and performers, with a unique theatrical style.  Each of her productions is an investigation into questions of political and personal identity – the LA race riots in Twilight: Los Angeles, 1992, the violent encounters between African-Americans and Lubavitch Jews in Crown Heights, Brooklyn in Fires in the Mirror. Read the rest of this entry »

Introducing the 2008-09 season

May 19, 2008

Now that we have announced the A.R.T.’s 2008-09 season, and I wanted to share with you some of my thoughts as I assembled these seven productions. I hope you’ll agree that it’s a terrific line-up, consisting of seven very different theatrical experiences–new plays and classics, comedies and dramas, great epics and chamber pieces, with a healthy dose of spectacle and politics, heartbreak and whimsy.

Read the rest of this entry »

Cardenio in Motion

May 2, 2008

Last month the A.R.T. teamed up with the Humanities Center at Harvard to host a conversation between Pieter-Dirk Uys and Homi Bhabha, the Center’s Director. Their discussion was fascinating, and we hope to have an audio file online soon.

On Monday we’re joining forces with the Center again for an event focused on Cardenio. The panel will include the two playwrights, Charles Mee and Stephen Greenblatt, as well as Martin Puchner, Read the rest of this entry »

A conversation with Pieter-Dirk Uys

April 8, 2008

If you’ve seen, or are planning to see, Elections and Erections, and would like to find out more about Pieter-Dirk Uys and his incredible story, you might want to join us at Zero Arrow Theatre on Monday April 14 at 6pm for a special event. Homi Bhabha, Chair of Harvard’s Humanties Center, will be in conversation with Pieter, and their discussion promises to be wide-ranging and fascinating. Read the rest of this entry »

Taking Copenhagen to Harvard

April 26, 2007

Karen MacDonald, John Kuntz and I visited Peter Galison’s History of Science class at Harvard last week and read a section from Copenhagen. It was part of Peter’s lecture on Werner Heisenberg and the German nuclear project; a group of students also read from the “Farm Hall transcripts” – records of conversations between Heisenberg and his colleagues when they were held captive in Britain. Read the rest of this entry »