Theater: Strutting in the Lower Depths

BALM IN GILEAD by Lanford Wilson

In the realm of today's performing arts, energy is an overvalued coin. Its name is invoked to trumpet every gonadal excess from heavy metal to slasher movies.

It is used as a populist club to pulverize the old elitist verities: grace, wit, precision, proportion, coherence. No walking of the fine narrative line for the apostles of anarchy, whose police-siren song goes like this: Wake up, pal! Get out of your fusty drawing room and hit the streets! The Aristotelian unities are dead! Modern life is chaos, and this...

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