If this is true, it’s time to stop mounting the play

Here. Too bad; it is one of a small handful of twentieth century US plays that I really like.

~ by Servetus on May 19, 2017.

2 Responses to “If this is true, it’s time to stop mounting the play”

  1. I watched the opinions on this play out on twitter right after the company posted on their social media account about it. And yes, the prevailing attitude was “Why would I now attempt this play if I can’t consider POC actors, too? Why would I make that choice?”

    The other thing is that for professional productions, companies must list casting as equal opportunity to be in compliance with the EEOC and Actor’s Equity. But if the Albee Estate won’t generally allow non-whites to be cast, they are essentially requiring companies to list “equal opportunity” in bad faith or break the law and list it “whites only” (ugh!). That issue alone could curtail productions of Albee’s plays for a long time.

    • Thanks for the info about the EEOC (I was thinking about this b/c I had asked you a question about this w/r/t casting for LLL). Supposedly they have allowed non-whites to be cast in the female role.

      However, even apart from that, to me what the Albee estate is saying essentially is that the work is time-bound and probably only to be of interest in a historicist sense. If the characters can only be considered products of their time and place that are in no sense archetypal or symbolic of general human conlicts, why would anyone want to do the play anyway? I’m as much for historical accuracy as anyone, but it seems like the estate is taking a concrete step in the way of allowing the work to become timeless (which it might be; it’s a really strong play). If it’s only about a white couple in the 50s … well, it’s not something that needs to be staged very often, then.

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