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Robert Falls

A Note from the Artistic Director

Any theater artist will inevitably confront the genius of 19th century Norwegian playwright Henrik Ibsen. Often dubbed “The Father of Modern Drama,” Ibsen wrote plays that differed from his forerunners’ in both style and subject matter. Portraying life “just as it is” had never been a goal for playwrights in previous eras: the ancient Greeks…

A Note from the Artistic Director

For decades, the competitive and energizing world of sports has been the backdrop for many acclaimed theatrical works. From Clifford Odets’ boxing-themed drama Golden Boy to the baseball centric Damn Yankees and Richard Greenberg’s Take Me Out, writers use athletics to create high-stakes drama, to build atmosphere and as a metaphor for life’s challenges. Yet…

A Note from the Artistic Director

In 1985, after decades of tension between the United States and the Soviet Union, U.S. President Ronald Reagan and Soviet General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev assembled for a meeting in Geneva, Switzerland. These men, representing two of the world’s superpowers, sat in cream-colored armchairs; once the photographers had captured the occasion on film, only interpreters were…

Why War Paint?

Few tales of fiction can match the improbable rags-to-riches stories of cosmetic giants Helena Rubinstein and Elizabeth Arden. Emerging from modest means, each would find initial success in the still-nascent industry of women’s skincare products by promising eternal youth and beauty to respectable women of the middle class—women already intrigued by other signs of post-World…

Why Soups, Stews, and Casseroles: 1976?

The past four decades have seen massive changes in American commerce, some of which are evident to all of us every day. Your call to customer service, once attended to by a local representative, may now be answered by someone in Phoenix or Mumbai; the mom-and-pop coffee shop that you patronized every morning may now…

Why The Matchmaker?

Few would argue that Thornton Wilder’s Our Town is one of the most loved plays of the 20th century. Since its debut in 1938 it has received countless productions, professional and amateur, in every corner of the United States and beyond. ...

Why Carlyle?

If by definition a provocateur is one who “causes discussion, thought or argument,” then playwright Thomas Bradshaw is certainly one of the most provocative writers now working. In Mary, his inaugural Goodman production in 2011, his comic depiction of a white Southern family, their devoted black servants and the gay son whose attempts to bring…

Why Another Word for Beauty?

How do we define beauty? By most standards, “beauty” is largely an external phenomenon, the quality of being physically attractive—although the standards of physical beauty may vary greatly from culture to culture and generation to generation. Webster’s Dictionary contains a second definition for the word, one that encompasses not only one’s outer being but the…

Why Disgraced? Artistic Director Robert Falls on Disgraced’s Extraordinary Impact

It begins innocuously enough. A young, upwardly mobile Wall Street attorney (and lapsed Muslim) and his beautiful, idealistic (and Caucasian) artist wife are throwing a small dinner party for a similarly successful couple, a Jewish art curator (who’s about to feature his hostess’ paintings in a new show) and his African American wife, another rising…

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