"A New Day for Gay Plays"

Discussion in 'Comedy & Tragedy' started by WilliamM, Jan 1, 2017.

  1. WilliamM

    WilliamM Regent

    No one would argue that gay men and women continue to face the kind of discrimination they did back in 1968, when Mart Crowley’s “The Boys in the Band” cracked open the closet door onstage, shining a stark light on what was then a topic rarely explored in popular culture.

    Mr. Crowley’s was the first play explicitly about gay men’s experience to break through to the mainstream, logging more than 1,000 performances Off Broadway, racking up mostly positive reviews in major outlets, being published in a mass-market edition and eventually becoming a film.

    The play has remained a landmark — both derided as rife with stereotypes and embraced for its honesty about the internal battles gay men faced at a time when homosexuality was still considered a psychiatric disorder.

    Much more here:http://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/27/t...-region&region=bottom-well&WT.nav=bottom-well
    TruHart1 likes this.
  2. uwsman2

    uwsman2 Count

    I saw the movie when I was in college. I hadn't accepted or fully comprehended who I was at that point, but my emotional reaction to this film, to "Death in Venice," and to "Fellini's Satyricon," really woke me up. During my first year of graduate school (1974) I started experimenting with meeting guys through personals ads, not feeling comfortable in bar situations. Having those films in mind bolstered my courage to explore, sad as they were in some ways.
    WilliamM likes this.
  3. TruHart1

    TruHart1 Mister Congeniality of the Realm

    Thank you so much, @WilliamM, for the link to this well-written article! I remember, being so closeted myself, when I snuck away from family to see "The Boys in the Band" movie as a teenager and being somewhat shocked by the accurate and somewhat negative depiction of gay relationships at the time. The over-the-top bitchiness of some of the characters bothered my very closeted self at the time. Later on, as I developed my gay circle of friends, I met a few of that very same "bitchy queen" type of gay guys, always trying for the last word on any subject but yet sadly and even desperately always hoping to find Mr. Right.

    TruHart1 :cool:
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  4. actor61

    actor61 Lord

    In the mid 1980s, there was a very, very good theatre company in Florida - where I was living at the time - called The Caldwell and they had the brilliant idea of doing "The Boys in the Band" and "The Normal Heart" in repertory, using a lot of the same actors in both plays. I saw "Boys" first and "Heart" the next night and it was fascinating to see the pre-AIDS gay community represented in "Boys" and the devastated community in "Heart". I have never forgotten those evenings.

    Its Glorious History

    And what a regional theatre it was! In the 1980s, it was making strides and breaking ground. They were one of the first companies in the nation to include gay-related themes in its programming; Bent, The Normal Heart playing in repertory with The Boys in the Band, and Take Me Out. They took their production of The Middle Ages to Los Angeles. Broadway heavy hitters such as Charles Nelson Reilly, Len Caroiu, Rosemary Prinz, and Beth Fowler. Leading man Mark Kudisch received his Equity card there.

    For the better part of forty years, the Caldwell Theatre Company set the benchmark for quality theatre in South Florida.
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