Acting, but Not on the Orders of the State

The easiest way of knowing whether good has triumphed over evil is to examine the freedom of the artist," quips a character in Travesties, one of the oft-staged plays by British playwright Tom Stoppard. Late last month, Stoppard was able to form a view on how that struggle is faring in Belarus. Along with around 70 local spectators packed into a tiny bar in a shabby industrial area of Minsk, the capital, he watched an underground theater performance. The Belarus Free Theater (FT), a group of some 40 playwrights, directors, producers and actors, operates in the repressive regime of President Alexander...

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