The American Theatre Wing Presents the Play That Changed My Life: Americas Foremost Playwrights on the Plays That Influenced Them by Ben Hodges
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Subtitled 'America's Foremost Playwrights on the Plays That Influenced Them', I have not been able to discern why these particular nineteen playwrights were chosen and some others were not. That having been said, I found all the essays/interviews fascinating. Closest to my own experiences with theater growing up were those of Christopher Durang. He knew and loved "Fiorello" and "Carnival" both of which I saw in try-out in Philadelphia as a teen. He also had attended the Paper Mill Playhouse where I was lucky enough to perform with the Children's Theater from the John B. Kelley Playhouse in the Park (now long gone). David Ives's story of being inspired by Jessica Tandy and Hume Cronyn in "A Delicate Balance" and then meeting them years later was touching. But the story that most affected me was that of Doug Wright, who made me cry. The two people who most influenced him were taken away long ago by A.I.D.S.
Highly readable and inspirational, this is a great book for anyone interested in theater. It certainly made me think about the experiences the propelled me to love theater.
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