NEWS, NOTES AND QUERIES
1. "BEGINNINGS 1915: THE CULTURAL MOMENT" is the title and focus of a major international conference to be held in Provincetown from 14 to 17 June 1987. The conference, which will explore the artistic, social and cultural movements and issues that led to the birth of modern American drama, is sponsored by the Provincetown Playhouse in conjunction with the University of Massachusetts-Boston. and is supported in part by grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Massachusetts Foundation for Humanities and Public Policy. Highlights include two art exhibits ("Against Broadway: The Rise of the Art Theatre in America," and "Provincetown Painters, 1915"); Provincetown Playhouse productions of four one-acts staged by the original Players in the summer of 1915 (followed by discussions with Provincetown-theatre historian Robert K. Sarlos); addresses by Daniel Aaron, C.W.E. Bigsby, Barbara Gelb, Theodore Mann and Rebecca Zurier; panel discussions of "The New Woman," "The New Psychology," "The New Politics" and "The New Art: The Armory Show and After"; a guided walking tour of literary and historic Provincetown; and a very special evening of family slides and reminiscences by the descendants of the original players.
Of particular interest to readers of this journal are the talks by Theodore Mann ("Twentieth Century American Theater," at 9 a.m. on the 15th), C.W.E. Bigsby ("Susan Glaspell and Her Plays," during the banquet that evening), and Barbara Gelb ("Heading Towards O'Neill," at 10:30 a.m. on the 17th). Mrs. Gelb will share some of her tape-recorded interviews with the playwright's widow, Carlotta Monterey O'Neill. In all, a fitting kick-off for the O'Neill centennial year!
The conference will be held at the Provincetown Inn, whose special three-night conference rate is $167 per person for a double, $257 for a single. More than a bargain, since the fee also covers the opening reception, three breakfasts, a banquet, a lobsterbake (Uncle Sid notwithstanding, don't eat the shells!), and all taxes and gratuities. The registration fee for the conference is $45 (daily rate $15). For information about accommodations, cal] toll-free 1-800-352-3137 from Massachusetts or 1-800-343-4444 from elsewhere. For additional information about the conference itself, write to Adele Heller, Producing Director of the Provincetown Playhouse (Box 477, Provincetown, MA 02657)--or call her at (617) 487-0955.
2. "EUGENE O'NEILL AND THE EMERGENCE OF AMERICAN DRAMA" is the subject of an international conference, organized by the BELGIAN LUXEMBOURG AMERICAN STUDIES ASSOCIATION, that will be held from 20 to 22 May 1988 in Han-sur-Lesse, Belgium. The conference, meant to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the playwright's birth, will take place a few days before the Stockholm O'Neill-Strindberg Symposium (24-27 May), enabling international visitors to attend both events. The Belgian conference will consist of a series of lectures by invited American and European scholars: John Henry Raleigh (University of California-Berkeley), Travis Bogard (University of California-Berkeley), Jackson Bryer (University of Maryland), Frederick C. Wilkins (Suffolk University), Esther M. Jackson (University of Wisconsin-Madison), Michael Manheim (University of Toledo), Judith E. Barlow (State University of New York at Albany), Paul D. Voelker (University of Wisconsin Center-Richland), C.W.E. Bigsby (University of East Anglia), Jean Chothia (Cambridge University), Marie-Claire Pasquier (University of Paris X), Egil Törnqvist (University of Amsterdam), Ulrich Halfmann (University of Mannheim), and Marc Maufort (University of Brussels).
The conference will also feature scenes from Long Day's Journey Into Night, in both Dutch and French. The actors who will appear in these theatrical presentations are Julien Schoenaerts, Reinhilde Decleir, Norbert Kaart, Carl Ridders, Yvonne Garden, and Jean-Michel Thibault.
In order to obtain further information and registration forms, please write to Mrs. G. Lercangée, Secretary, Belgian Luxembourg American Studies Association, Center for American Studies, Boulevard de l'Empereur Keizerslaan, 1000 Brussels, Belgium.
3. O'NEILL CONFERENCES IN CHINA: THE RECENT PAST AND THE EXCITING FUTURE. As is noted by Professor Ouyang Ji in the minutes of the Eugene O'Neill Society's 1986 annual meeting that are printed in this issue, the first-ever O'Neill conference in China took place last February. Thirty papers were delivered to an audience of 60, the proceedings were widely covered by the press, and Mr. Cao Yu, Chairman of the All-China Playwrights' Association and himself a playwright significantly influenced by O'Neill, opened the ceremonies with remarks very complimentary about O'Neill and his contributions to world drama.
And now that a precedent has been successfully set, it is gratifying to note that exciting plans are under way for a second Chinese conference, this one international in scope and participation, in Nanjing, under the leadership of Haiping Liu, the Eugene O'Neill Society's International Secretary for the Orient. A lot depends on the securing of the necessary funds to bring it off, so plans are still tentative for the event, which is scheduled for 6-9 June 1988, shortly after the O'Neill conference in Belgium and the O'Neill-Strindberg Symposium in Sweden. (O'Neillians will log a record number of air miles in the summer of '88!) And the Nanjing plans are enough to boost the spirits of even the most jet-lagged! Three professional theatres have offered to present O'Neill productions during the conference; a Beijing producer may provide a production of The Emperor Jones "in Peking opera form"; plus a massive book and photo exhibit, a 20-minute TV documentary on O'Neill in China (not the disastrous Shanghai visit but more recent events!); in Beijing, a Quintero-directed production of Marco Millions; and, in Professor Liu's words, "an excursion to Yangchow, a nearby city where, according to Mr. O'Neill, Marco Polo once ruled as Mayor." More information will be offered in future issues, but the interested can write for the latest news directly. Address inquiries to Haiping Liu, Department of Foreign Languages, Nanjing University, Nanjing, People's Republic of China.
4. BOGARD READIES NEW EDITIONS OF O'NEILL. Travis Bogard is editing the three-volume edition of O'Neill's plays that will be published as part of the Library of America series in 1988. (The first volume ends with The First Man, the second with Mourning Becomes Electra.) He is also preparing a volume of previously-unpublished O'Neill plays that will be brought out by Yale University Press. (It will include The Personal Equation and the eight-act version of Marco Millions.) And Oxford University Press will soon print a revised, paperback edition of his Contour in Time: The Plays of Eugene O'Neill. Triple----nay, quintuple--cause for centennial rejoicing!
5. FLOYD READIES FOURTH VOLUME. Virginia Floyd is earnestly at work on a fourth O'Neill volume. Its title: "Eugene O'Neill: The Unfinished Plays." Subtitle: "O'Neill's Notes for The Visit of Malatesta, The Last Conquest, and Blind Alley Guy." As editor, she will provide introductions and annotations. Like its three predecessors, the volume will be published by Ungar, who are also preparing a paperback edition of the third book, The Plays of Eugene O'Neill: New Assessment.
6. BOWER TO EDIT COMPLETE MANSIONS. Good news from Martha Bower of the University of New Hampshire. She will edit the first publication of the complete text of More Stately Mansions. The book will be published during the centennial year by Oxford University Press.
7. CENTENNIAL SEASON PLANNED IN AMHERST. When some regional and educational theatres are resisting the thought of doing even one O'Neill play during the O'Neill centennial year of 1988, it is heartening to note that some realize the importance of the event and the dramatist it honors. Certainly high among the latter is the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, which plans an entire semester of O'Neill plays that fall, with the first (mainstage) production scheduled to open on the exact date of the centennial. Sunday, October 16. Fuller information will be provided in a future issue, when specific titles have been chosen and dates announced.
8. MODERN DRAMA SEEKS O'NEILL ESSAYS. Modern Drama has resumed its policy of having a special issue annually. For 1988, the topic is O'NEILL AND THE AMERICAN THEATRE, to mark the centenary of the playwright's birth. Submissions on this theme should reach the editor by August 1st, 1987, and preferably earlier. Contributors should follow the style and layout of articles previously published in the journal; the usual maximum is 4,000 words. Submissions should be sent to John H. Astington, Department of English, Erindale College, University of Toronto, Missisauga, ONT, Canada L5L IC6.
9. MANUSCRIPTS SOUGHT ON O'NEILL LEGACY. Philip C. Kolin, coeditor of Studies in American Drama, 1945-Present, is seeking carefully documented studies of how O'Neill has influenced a playwright of our period (excluding Albee). Anyone working on such a project should write to Professor Kolin at the Department of English, University of Southern Mississippi, Hattiesburg, Mississippi 39406-8395. "We cannot make any promises," writes Professor Kolin, "except to give the manuscript extra careful and speedy attention."
10. RECENT AND FORTHCOMING PUBLICATIONS ON O'NEILL. (Some will be abstracted in future issues.)
Adler, Thomas P. "'Daddy Spoke to Me!': Gods Lost and Found in Long Day's Journey Into Night and Through a Glass Darkly." Comparative Drama, 20 (Winter 1986-87), 341-348. [Professor Adler's comparison of the O'Neill play and the Bergman film was first presented at the 1986 conference on "Eugene O'Neill--the Later Years" at Suffolk University in Boston.]
Brown, Carolyn T. "Creative Imitation: Hung Shen's Cultural Translation [in Chao] of Eugene O'Neill's The Emperor Jones." Comparative Literature Studies, 22 (Spring 1985), 147-155.
Egri, Péter. "Epic Retardation and Diversion: Hemingway, Strindberg and O'Neill." Zeitschrift für Anglistik and Amerikanistik (Leipzig), 33 (1985), 324-330. [For Whom the Bell Tolls, Dance of Death, Strange Interlude.]
Gáglik, Marián. "O'Neill, Baker, and Hung Shen." 381-385 in Proceedings of the 8th Congress of the International Comparative Literature Association, II, ed. B Köpeczi and G. M. Vajda. Stuttgart: Bieber, 1980. [Mourning Becomes Electra, George Pierce Baker, and O'Neill's influence on Hung Shen.]
Grimm, Reinhold. "O'Neill's Aufhebung der europaischen Moderne: Naturalismus and Nietzscheanismus in Long Day's Journey Into Night." 252-258 in Drama and Theater im 20. Jahrhundert: Gestschrift fur Walter Hinck, ed. H.D. Irmscher and W. Keller. Göttingen Vanderhoeck & Rupreclrt, 1983.
Hinden, Michael. Review of Critical Essays on Eugene O'Neill, ed. James J. Martine. Modern Drama, 29 (Sept. 1986), 490-492. [Book reviews are not usually cited here. but Professor Hinden's detailed and affirmative survey of the volume in question ends with some appropriate words for centennialists: "So long as we confine ourselves to biographical speculation, we tend to remain mired in anecdote.... O'Neill's intimate life, his 'foul rag-and-bone shop of the heart,' has been open to the public for two decades now. As we approach the playwright's centennial year (1988), perhaps it is time once again to turn our attention from ground level to spires, from life materials to art."]
Lewis, Ward B. "O'Neill and Hauptmann: A Study in Mutual Admiration," Comparative Literature Studies 22 (Summer 1985), 231-243. [Professor Lewis first delivered this paper at the 1984 conference on "Eugene O'Neill--the Early Years" at Suffolk University in Boston.]
Moleski, Joseph J. and John H. Stroupe. "Jean Anouilh and Eugene O'Neill: Reptition as Negativity." Comparative Drama, 20 (Winter 1986-87), 315-326. [A's Antigone, Becket and Eurydice, and O's Hairy Ape, Strange Interlude and Iceman Cometh, examined in a "Derridian framework."]
Mounier, Catherine. "L'Expressionnisme dans l'oeuvre d'Eugčne O'Neill." 329-340 in L'Expressionnisme dans le Theatre Europeen, ed. D. Bablet and J. Jacquol. Paris: Centre Nat. de la Recherche Scientifique, 1984.
Shim, Jung Soon. "Self vs. Tradition: Images of Women in Modern American and Korean Drama." Dissertation Abstracts International, 45 (March 1985), 419A. [Self-realization vs. stereotyped sex roles in works by O'Neill, Tennessee Williams, Megan Terry, Wu-chin Kim, Ch'i-jin Yu, and Cha-rim Kim.]
Simon, John. "Brothers Under the Skin: O'Neill and Williams." Hudson Review, Winter 1987, pp. 553-565.
Stroupe, John H., ed. Critical Approaches to Eugene O'Neill. New York: AMS Press, 1987. A collection of essays on O'Neill from the pages of Comparative Drama; and an especially interesting one since each essay takes a different approach to O'Neill's plays, making the book as appropriate to courses on criticism as to courses on O'Neill per se. Here are the authors and titles gathered in this eagerly awaited volume:
Wainscott, Ronald H. "Exploring the Religion of the Dead: Philip Moeller Directs O'Neill's Mourning Becomes Electra." Theatre History Studies, 7 (1987). ISSN 0733-2033.
11. RECENT BOOKS INCLUDING O'NEILL. [Five recently published books on broader subjects include extended coverage of or reference to Eugene O'Neill. All will be reviewed in future issues of the Newsletter. --Ed.]
Adler, Thomas P. Mirror on the Stage: The Pulitzer Plays as an Approach to American Drama. West Lafayette, IN: Purdue UP, 1987. 171 pp. , $17.50 cloth. ISBN 0-911198-84-9.
Burkman, Katherine H. The Arrival of Godot: Ritual Patterns in Modern Drama. Cranbury, NJ: Fairleigh Dickinson UP, 1987. 176 pp.. $24.50 cloth. ISBN 0-8386-3264-5. (Includes analysis of The Iceman Cometh.)
Gilmore, Thomas B. Alcoholism and and Drinking in Twentieth-Century Literature. Chapel Hill: U. of North Carolina Press, 1987. $22.50 cloth (ISBN 0-8078-1726-0), $9.95 Tr paper (ISBN 0-8078-4174-9), 260 pp.
Henderson, Mary C. Theater to America: 200 Years of Plays, Players, and Productions. New York: Harry N. Abrams, 1986. 328 pp., $45.00 cloth. ISBN 0-8109-1084-5.
Wellwarth, George. Modern Drama and the Death of God. Madison: U. of Wisconsin Press, 1987. 192 pp., $25.75 cloth. ISBN 0-299-10850-3.
12. RECENT AND FORTHCOMING O'NEILL PRODUCTIONS.
Ah, Wilderness!, dir. Karen Barton. Winchester [MA] Unitarian Players, Michelsen Room, Winchester Unitarian Church, May 1-9, 1987. (To be reviewed in the next issue.)
Désir sous les Ormes (Desire Under the Elms, translated by Ginette Herry and Claude Lacassagne), dir. Claudia Morin. Theâtre de l'Athénée-Louis Jouvet, Paris. Opened January 9, 1987.
Desire Under the Elms, dir. Patrick Mason. Greenwich Theatre, Crooms Hill, Greenwich, England, May 6 - June 20, 1987. (Heralded by the London Theatre Record as "another farming epic"--evidently a specialty of Mr. Mason's.)
The Hairy Ape, dir. Nathan Criman. Nelke Theatre, Brigham Young Univ., Provo, Utah, March 19-21, 1987. [The director, a student of Jean Anne Waterstradt, received considerable praise and many requests for "more O'Neill"--words we like to hear! --Ed ]
The Hairy Ape, dir. Peter Stein. National Theatre (Lyttleton), London, May 11-16, 1987. Performed by the Schaubühne Theatre Company of West Berlin. (To be reviewed in the next issue.)
Den Ludna Gorillan (The Hairy Ape), dir Peter Oskarson. Folkteatern, Gavle, Sweden. Opened on November 15, 1986. (Reviewed in this issue.)
Long Days Journey Into Night, dir. Julien Schoenaerts. Korrekelder Theatre Company, Bruges, Belgium, November 14, 1986 - January 10, 1987. (To be reviewed in the next issue.)
Long Day's Journey Into Night, dir. Barbara Rosoff. Portland [Maine] Stage Company, February 7 - March 1, 1987. (Reviewed in this issue.)
A Moon for the Misbegotten, dir. David Head. Theatrical Outfit, Atlanta, Georgia, March 11 - April 12, 1987. (To be reviewed in the next issue.)
A Touch of the Poet. Gateway Players, Wareham, MA, May 1987.
13. HOPELESSNESS AT THE LYTTLETON. The scheduled transplantation of the Quintero-Robards Broadway production of The Iceman Cometh to London's National Theatre as part of a series of international productions had to be cancelled because Barnard Hughes, who had played Harry Hope, was prevented by prior commitments from rejoining the company.
14. WELDED IN PARIS? INFORMATION, PLEASE. Thomas Quinn Curtis, surveying the 1986-87 theatrical season in Paris in the Sunday, January 18 issue of the New York Times (Sec. 2, pp. 3, 10), notes, in addition to the production of Desire Under the Elms that is listed in this issue's roster of recent and forthcoming productions, an imminent Parisian mounting of Welded. Word on site, company, etc. would be welcomed if anyone has that information. A review, with or without pictures, would be even more gleefully received. --Ed.
15. ONE-ACTS READ AT MONTE CRISTO COTTAGE. Thanks in part to a grant from the Connecticut Humanities Council, the Eugene O'Neill Theater Center presented a series of free public readings and discussions of short works by O'Neill during the month of April. The readings by members of the community were held at Monte Cristo Cottage, and each was followed by a chat led by an O'Neill scholar. Jordan Pecile of the U.S. Coast Guard Academy led the discussions of The Dreamy Kid (April 2) and Before Breakfast and other soliloquies (April 23), and Adam Versenyi of the Yale School of Drama and Linda Herr of Connecticut College guided participants through, respectively, Hughie (April 9) and Abortion (April 30).
16. O'NEILL ON THE CONFERENCE CIRCUIT.
The O'Neill session at the 1987 Modern Language Association convention in New York City (10:15-11:30 a.m. on Tuesday, December 30 in the Gotham Room of the Marriott Marquis) had as its subject "O'Neill: The Composition Process." Jackson R. Bryer of the University of Maryland chaired the session, which included papers by Paul D. Voelker of the University of Wisconsin Center-Richland ("The Evolution of Bound East for Cardiff: From Conrad's Novel to the Theater on the Wharf"), Martha Bower of the University of New Hampshire ("The Great Unravel'd Knot of O'Neill's Composition Process: The Calms of Capricorn, A Case Study"), and Judith E. Barlow of the State University of New York at Albany ("O'Neill's Scenarios: The Beginning of the Journey"),
The four speakers at the session on "Games People Play: Family Relationships in O'Neill," chaired by Frederick C. Wilkins of Suffolk University at the 1987 Northeast Modern Language Association convention in Boston (4:00-5:30 p.m. on Friday, April 3 in the Sheraton Boston Hotel), were Paul D. Voelker of the University of Wisconsin Center-Richland ("O'Neill's First Families: Warnings through The Personal Equation") Bette Mandl of Suffolk University ("Family Ties: Landscape and Gender in Desire Under the Elms"), Marc Maufort of the University of Brussels ("The Legacy of Melville's Pierre: Family Relationships in Mourning Becomes Electra"), and Stephen A. Black of Simon Fraser University ("The War Among the Tyrones"). Special guests at the session were Dr. and Mrs. Harry Kozol. As all O'Neillians know, Dr. Kozol was the O'Neills' personal physician during their last years in Boston. At least two of the papers presented at the session will appear in the next issue of the Newsletter.
O'Neill was also represented at another session of the NEMLA convention. At the Faulkner meeting (8:30-10:00 a.m. on the same day), Donald Duclos of William Paterson College delivered a paper entitled "O'Neill and Faulkner: Ritual Flight and Pursuit," in which parallels were traced in Light in August and The Emperor Jones. That paper may also be included in the next issue of the Newsletter.
O'Neill was represented as well at the 1987 convention of the College English Association in Charleston. South Carolina, at the start of April. At a session on "New Departures in the Classroom Presentation of Literature," Larry Roderer of J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College, discussed "How Literature Students Practice the Art of Acting With Their Reading of Eugene O'Neill's Sea Plays," (3:30-5:00 p.m. on Friday, April 3).
Nor was O'Neill forgotten at the Twelfth Annual Convention of the International Society of Phenomenology and Literature, held in April in Cambridge. MA. At the evening session on Saturday, April 11, William S. Haney, II of Maharishi International College in Fairfield, Iowa, spoke on "The Semiotics of Self-Revelation in Eugene O'Neill's The Emperor Jones."
Edward L. Shaughnessy will chair an O'Neill "centennial seminar" entitled "Dispelling the Fog" at the annual convention of the Midwest Modern Language Association next fall in Columbus, Ohio (November 12-14 at the Hyatt Regency). In calling for papers, Professor Shaughnessy requested "new (and short) essays that challenge questionable assumptions about O'Neill--e.g., that he lacked a sense of humor, that he was bereft of poetic gifts. etc." A worthy endeavor, deserving of note even though the April 13 deadline for submissions has passed. The editor hopes to provide a summary of the session in a future issue.
Finally, here's the tentative lineup for the Jordan Miller-led special session on "Eugene O'Neill and the Orient" at the MLA convention in San Francisco next December:
Looking still further ahead, the topic for the O'Neill session at the 1988 Northeast Modern Language Association convention, to be held March 24-26, in Providence, will be "'Theatricality' and Experiment in O'Neill's Middle Period." Its chair, Martha Bower of the University of New Hampshire, welcomes papers and proposals. She must receive them before October 1, 1987.
17. EGRI BRINGS O'NEILL TO DUBROVNIK. Budapest's premier O'Neillian, Péter Egri, presented two papers on O'Neill this March at the international course on "Sentimentality in Modern Literature and Popular Culture," held at the Inter-University Centre in Dubrovnik, Yugoslavia. The subjects were "Sentiment and Sentimentality in Twentieth-Century American Drama: O'Neill, Williams, Miller and Albee" (March 25) and "Sentiment and Sentimentality in O'Neill's Strange Interlude" (March 26). Incidentally, his next book, "The Birth of American Tragedy," is scheduled for publication, in the O'Neill-centennial year of 1988, by the Textbook Publishing House Tankönyvkiado in Budapest.
18. COMMENTS SOUGHT FOR DOCTORAL PROJECT. Jeffrey E. Sands, who is at work on a dissertation on O'Neill at the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana, has narrowed his focus beyond the one announced in the Summer-Fall 1986 issue of the Newsletter (p. 48). Here is his description of the current project, for which he solicits the comments and insights of fellow O'Neillians:
Tough, indeed, but definitely worth the asking. And here is a chance to help in reaching the answers. If you have either directed O'Neill's plays or given some thought to the role of stage directions in performance, Mr. Sands would be most grateful if you would share your insights with him. His address is 1207 W. Springfield Avenue, Champaign, IL 61821. Tel. (217) 352-9331.
19. "QUINTERO MAY DO O'NEILL PLAY IN CHINA": thus read the headline of an article by Richard F. Shepard in the New York Times (December 29, 1986, p. C17). And the good news is that, if United States funding is located to match a contribution by the Chinese Government, Mr. Quintero may direct a production of Marco Millions, in a translation by Haiping Liu. in China in 1988. (He directed a most successful production of the play in 1964 with the Repertory Theater of Lincoln Center.) Negotiations have begun between Mr. Quintero and Sha Yexin, a playwright and the director of the Shanghai People's Art Theater. after initial talks between Mr. Quintero and Professor Liu at the Boston O'Neill conference last May. More information will be provided as soon as it is available.
20. IN MEMORIAM. Lovers of O'Neill were saddened by the recent deaths of actor Walter Abel (on March 26. at the age of 88) and producer Catherine Huntington (on February 27, at the age of 100). Mr. Abel, an early member of the Provincetown Players, who appeared in last year's television documentary Eugene O'Neill - A Glory of Ghosts, had his most energetic O'Neill season during November of 1924, when he appeared, virtually simultaneously, as Olson in the Glencairn quartet at the Provincetown Playhouse and as the show-ending sheriff in Desire Under the Elms at the Greenwich Village Theater. He would deliver his last line as Olson. sprint to the second playhouse, and grab his rifle just in time to escort Abbie and Eben to their ecstatic doom and deliver the play's last line: "It's a jim--dandy farm, no denyin'. Wish I owned it!" Miss Huntington, for more than thirty years the owner and producer of the Provincetown Playhouse on Cape Cod, kept O'Neill's plays alive when few other producers would consider them. (At least one O'Neill work was faithfully, even religiously included in every summer season.) In addition to the Provincetown, which she operated from its founding in 1940 until 1972, she helped found the Boston Stage Society in 1922, the New England Repertory Theater in 1938, and the Poet's Theater in Cambridge in the 1950s. A close friend of O'Neill, Edna St. Vincent Millay and John Singer Sargent, Miss Huntington was honored by the Boston City Council on March 28, 1983 (her 97th birthday) for "a life which nourished and inspired generations of theater artists."
21. OF HOOPS AND THE AESCHYLEAN. Playwright Terrrace McNally, tracing the path a new play must traverse en route to completion and performance ("From Page to Stage: How a Playwright Guards His Vision," New York Times, Sunday, December 7, 1986, Sec. II, pp. 1, 26), discussed the current, ubiquitous presence of the dramaturg--"a critic who is on the playwright's side" (p. 26)--and wondered how such practitioners of (theatrical) preventive medicine would have handled a script by O'Neill (p. 26):
22. SHEAFFER ON SONS AND PUNDITS: a note from Louis Sheaffer. "The recent telecast of All My Sons reminded me that the Arthur Miller drama, which today looks dated, preachy and contrived, won the New York Drama Critics Circle award as the best play of the 1946-47 season. At the same time the Pulitzer pundits, after earnest cogitation, decided that no play was good enough to be singled out. That season, nevertheless, saw the curtain rise on one of O'Neill's masterpieces, The Iceman Cometh."
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