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John Durang: Man of the American Stage
– October 18, 2011
In the memoirs of no other contemporary theater personality (i.e., William Dunlap, Edward Cape Everard, James Fennell, William Wood), has a figure quite like John Durang emerged. His eagerness in grasping opportunities, expanding his skills, shaping his career, and establishing a home are unique, not only in themselves, but also in his articulation of these enterprises. Looking at his life through the lens of American national development illuminates the role of the theater in this critical and ongoing process, while also revealing the forms and repertory that shaped this theater. Remarkably few significant biographies are available of American dance and theatrical figures whose lives preceded the twentieth century. A small handful of memoirs by actors of the period fill in a small part of this gap, but memoirs-like John Durang's-need context and connections to be fully appreciated. The role of dance and theater in shaping the young United States is highlighted in this biography. John Durang: Man of the American Stage by Professor Lynn Matluck Brooks serves both general and theater-educated readerships. Interested groups include readers of American studies, dance, and theater.
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