Monday, June 2, 2008

Story Theater

Sad news today from playwright/friend Jeffrey Sweet ("The Value of Names"), who reported on the passing of Paul Sills. I was shocked to learn that Sills was 80. He had that perpetually youthful demeanor that made you feel he'd never die, and while I never had the opportunity to work with him, Jeff said he was a real piece of work--not easy at all, but brilliant.

My only experience of his work were the two Broadway productions he created in the early 1970s: STORY THEATER and METMORPHOSES.

These had a profound influence on me in teaching me that a bare stage and talented actors and an imaginative director were all that was needed to create compelling theatre. I have emulated that example on a number of occasions as a director, and Sills is definitely one of the key reasons.

So, RIP Paul Sills, and I hope you look down fondly upon those of us who continue to perpetuate your style.

Until next time...


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