Theater: Eerie Dancing At the Abyss Confessions of a Nightingale

Most artists would prefer to be remembered for their work, but some have such a gift for performing the role of celebrity that they make themselves equally memorable for their semiprivate lives. Tennessee Williams was once described as the most famous playwright in the world; he remarked ruefully that he would rather be known as the best. In his final years Williams' talent faded, but his persona, a blend of alcoholic misbehavior, grandiose overstatement, poetic sensitivity and terminally naughty wit, raged on. To his indignation and amusement, the notoriety transcended the art. Last year brought two scandal- tinged biographies of the...

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