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Call for Submissions: Edward Albee as Dramatic and Theatrical Innovator

Call for Submissions for Volume Three of New Perspectives of Edward Albee Society, the Official Publication of the Edward Albee Society. (Published annually by Brill from which Volume One, Edward Albee and Absurdism, is now available)

Topic: Edward Albee as Dramatic and Theatrical Innovator

We are seeking essays that explore Albee’s plays for innovations in theatrical style, dramatic structure, creation of great characters (from both a performance and observation of human behavior perspective), and subject matter (e.g., mistreatment of the elderly, reversal of gender roles in conventional marriage, death and dying).

In addition, we welcome essays that explore Albee’s innovative work in a variety of roles and venues other than as author of plays produced in theaters, for example:

  • The Last Frontier Conference in Alaska
  • The William Flanagan Memorial Creative Persons Center (The Edward Albee Foundation)
  • Albee’s teaching at the Universities of Houston and Princeton, and his visits to colleges and universities to participate in conferences or give talks, and mentorship of student playwrights.
  • His mentoring at Signature Theatre and Cherry Lane Theatre
  • His international engagement as an ambassador of PEN and International Theatre Institute
  • His curating of art exhibits, and support of specific visual artists (and artists of any type).

We encourage submissions from graduate students as well as established scholars or theatre professionals from any approach (e.g., theatre history, performance studies, literary theory and criticism), as well as those who have worked with Mr. Albee in any of the above activities.

Please contact either/both of the Editors, David Crespy (CrespyD@missouri.edu) and Lincoln Konkle (konkleli@tcnj.edu) for queries, proposals, and/or submissions. For submission guidelines, please see the general call for submissions on the Edward Albee Society website:

http://edwardalbeesociety.org/new-perspectives-in-edward-albee-studies-a-book-series/call-for-submissions/

Deadline of submission for completed manuscripts: November 15, 2017.

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Edward Albee, one of America’s greatest playwrights, passes at 88

The Edward Albee Society notes, with great sadness, the passing of Mr. Albee on Friday, September 16, 2016, at the age of 88.

The list of Albee’s many works, outlined in full on our Works page, includes these award winning plays: The Zoo Story (Berlin Festival Award, 1960; Obie Award, 1960; Vernon Rice Memorial Award, 1960; Drama Desk Award, 1960; Argentine Critics Circle Award, 1961); The Death of Bessie Smith (Berlin Festival Award, 1960; Best Plays of the 1960-1961 Season, Foreign Press Association, 1961); The American Dream (Best Plays of the 1960-1961 Season, Foreign Press Association, 1961; Lola D’Annunzio Award, 1961); Who’s Afraid of Virginia Wolf? (New York Drama Critics Circle Award, 1962; Tony Award for Best Play, 1963; Foreign Press Association Award, 1963; Outer Circle Award, 1963; Saturday Review Drama Critics Award, 1963; Variety Drama Critics’ Poll Award, 1963; Evening Standard Award, 1964); A Delicate Balance (Pulitzer Prize for Drama – Albee’s first Pulitzer Prize, 1967); Seascape (Pulitzer Prize for Drama – Albee’s second Pulitzer Prize, 1975); The Man Who Had Three Arms (Fringe First Award, Edinburgh Festival Fringe, 1989); Three Tall Women (Pulitzer Prize for Drama – Albee’s third Pulitzer Prize, 1994; New York Drama Critics Circle Award, 1994); and The Goat, or Who Is Sylvia? (Drama Desk Award for Best New Play, 2002; Tony Award for Best Play, 2002).

As reported by Playbill, “He was a member of the Dramatists Guild Council and president of the Edward F. Albee Foundation. Mr. Albee was awarded the Gold Medal in Drama from the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 1980 and in 1996 received the Kennedy Center Honors and the National Medal of Arts. In 2005 he was awarded a special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement.”

Various institutions paid tribute to Albee and marked his passing, including The New York Times and Playbill. Currently, their websites provide additional memorials such as photos, links to past reviews of Albee’s plays, and a video segment from Albee’s interview with Charlie Rose.

The accomplishments and legacy of Edward Albee are remembered on our own website’s Biography page.

We will post further information as we receive it. We have lost one of the greatest of American playwrights, but we will continue to celebrate his life, his work, and his achievements.

Update 1 (9/18/16): Tributes to Edward Albee from actors, directors and writers are expected to air Sunday, Sept. 18 on both CBS’ Sunday Morning and NBC’s Today shows.

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Read the EAS interview with Playwright Sheila Callaghan

Sheila Callaghan is an award-winning playwright, and her plays have been produced in New York, L.A., across the country, and abroad. These include such titles as Dead City, Lascivious Something, Everything You Touch, and That Pretty Pretty; or The Rape Play, all of which were reviewed in The New York Times. Sheila is a member of the Obie winning playwright’s organization 13P, and a founder of the feminist activist group The Kilroys. She has received the Princess Grace Award for emerging artists, a Cherry Lane Mentorship Fellowship, the Susan Smith Blackburn Award, and the prestigious Whiting Award.

Sheila is also a writer/producer of the Showtime comedy Shameless starring William H. Macy and Emmy Rossum. Previously she was a writer for Showtime’s The United States of Tara starring Toni Collette, John Corbett, and Brie Larson. In 2016 she was nominated for a Golden Globe for her work on the Hulu comedy series Casual.

In our 5000-word interview, Sheila responds with great enthusiasm to questions about Albee, the American theatre, writing for episodic television vs. the stage, and advice for aspiring writers.

If you would like to read this interview, which is only available to EAS members, join the Edward Albee Society and we will email you the complete interview with additional photos. Please go to our membership page for information on how to join.

Sheila Callaghan outside the Shameless writers’ office.

Sheila Callaghan outside the Shameless writers’ office.

Here are some of the questions we asked:

How has Edward Albee influenced you and other younger generation playwrights?

What are your favorite Albee plays, and what was your experience like meeting Albee and receiving feedback from him on one of your plays in workshop?

How were your mentorship experiences at the Cherry Lane Theatre and working with Angelina Fiordellis?

What is your assessment of the contemporary American theater? Who are your favorite playwrights, directors, theater companies, or regional theaters?

What is it like writing episodic television versus plays? And, which medium would you prefer, if economics weren’t a part of the conversation?

What advice might you offer to aspiring writers for the stage or TV?

Do you think that opportunities for women to write, direct, or otherwise work in these artistic professions are improving, or if not, what do you think it will take to bring about diversity in all aspects of production?

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Dallas Production of ‘The Goat; or, Who Is Sylvia’

THE GOAT or, WHO IS SYLVIA? (Notes toward a definition of tragedy) by Edward Albee
L.I.P. Service
May 26th through June 11th (Thursday, Friday, & Saturday performances @ 8PM)

Performed at the Rudy Seppy Studio, 2333 W. Rochelle Rd. Irving, TX 75062. Tickets are $15 and are available at www.lipserviceproductions.info or call 817-689-6461.

Directed by Shawn Gann

CAST
Martin – Van Quattro
Stevie – *Morgana Shaw
Billy – Garrett Hayes
Ross – Jason Leyva

Martin, did you ever think you’d come back from your splendid life, walk into your living room and find you had no life left?

Martin—a hugely successful architect who has just turned fifty—leads an ostensibly ideal life with his loving wife and gay teenage son. But when he confides to his best friend that he is also in love with a goat (named Sylvia), he sets in motion events that will destroy his family and leave his life in tatters.

“There are falls a person takes, gets up, and brushes off; then, there are falls from such heights where even the bottom seems impossibly far.”
–Shawn Gann

*Denotes member of Actors’ Equity Association

L.I.P. Service Productions Logo

L.I.P. Service Productions - The Goat Or, Who is Sylvia? Logo

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Winter 2015/2016 E-Newsletter

Dear Colleague,

This is an update on our activities at the Edward Albee Society, and a plea for your membership dues and/or donations for the year ending in 2015. The Albee Society is a 501C3 not-for-profit organization, and your donations are tax deductible. We are slowly paying our web-designer, Alex Poulus, for his incredible work on the website’s original design; but we would like to make sure he receives full payment by year end 2016. And with your help and generosity, we are going to create some new members-only content for 2016, including interviews with major theatre artists and their work with Edward Albee. At this point, only a small portion of our email recipients are actually paid members, and we could really use your help – a membership is only $30.00, but every membership counts.

In January, we’ll be sending Edward Albee Society members Lincoln Konkle’s interview with playwright/writer and producer of Showtime’s Shameless/fan of Edward Albee, Sheila Callaghan. This will be announced also on the EAS website and FB page, but for members who have paid their dues for 2015-2016, we will email them the entire interview with Sheila about how she was influenced by Albee, her favorite Albee play, etc., and also questions about being a playwright in 21st c. America, and what it’s like to write episodic television.

And we ask that not only our current members update their membership for 2016, but that you encourage your colleagues to join our organization, which has grown substantially since our founding in 2013. And let them know they can now join ONLINE using PAYPAL at our website: http://edwardalbeesociety.org/membership/. It’s easy and fast, and if you go to our membership tab, you will find information on how to join either online or via mail. Membership for one year is $30; Lifetime Membership is $300, and again, any donations are gratefully accepted.

But, in addition to your membership and donation, we need your active involvement. In the Conference section of our e-newsletter, you’ll find a CFP from Natka Bianchini, and we encourage you to submit Albee-based papers and panels for this conference, but also for other conferences such as ASTR, ATHE, MATC, and other major conferences. We are also interested in hearing about any productions of Edward Albee’s plays. This January, I’ll be presenting as a visiting scholar at the New Stage Theatre in Jackson, Mississippi which will be producing a fiftieth anniversary production of Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? New Stage Theatre first produced Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? on January 25, 1966 – an historic event for Jackson and as Jim Miles, a founding member of New Stage Theatre, said it was “a challenging time, charged with very strong feelings about the civil rights issues of the day. And those feelings, by some, naturally spilled over to considerable resistance to change of most any kind.” We will be providing some wonderful historical coverage of this groundbreaking original production, and the current production, and my talk at New Stage Theatre on our Facebook page in 2016.

Thank you again for your membership contribution–it will go a long way to helping us build our website, our book series, and conference coordination. And let me know how you’d like to be more involved in our organization – each year we’re growing and we have exciting news for this upcoming year.

E-Newsletter of the Edward Albee Society – Goings On in 2015!

If you have been working on an Edward Albee-based project – and that includes scholarly work, essays, reviews, courses, and productions of Mr. Albee’s plays – PLEASE let us know about it, and we’ll include it in our bi-annual newsletter and on our website! Below is what has been happening with EAS this past year:

The Edward Albee Society at Conferences:

2015 was a busy one for the Edward Albee Society. In March, David Crespy presented a paper and chaired a panel sponsored by EAS at the Mid-America Theatre Conference in Kansas City, Missouri. The same month, Natka Bianchini chaired an EAS panel at the Comparative Drama Conference in Baltimore, Maryland. She also represented the society during the conference’s plenary session on Visions of Tragedy in American Theatre. The remarks from that plenary will be published in next year’s volume of Text and Presentation, and are currently being expanded into an anthology to be published by Bloomsbury Press in 2017. Finally, David Crespy chaired a session sponsored by EAS at the American Literature Association in May in Boston, Massachusetts. We are looking forward to strong representation for 2016 conferences. West Coast Members, please see our call for ALA, which is being held in San Francisco next May, below!

And here is the call for ALA to send to the society members. We’d love to see you at the American Literature Association!

Edward Albee Society CALL FOR PAPERS

American Literature Association
May 26-29, 2016
San Francisco, California

The Edward Albee Society is seeking panelists to deliver papers on any aspect of Albee’s life and work at the forthcoming American Literature Association conference in San Francisco. Papers should be 15 minutes in length and presenters will have access to AV equipment during their session. If interested, please submit a 250-word abstract to Dr. Natka Bianchini, Albee Society Conference Planner and Vice President, at nbianchini@loyola.edu by Monday, January 25th, 2016. Please include name, affiliation, and contact information with your submission.

—- Help us expand our presence by proposing panels and working with our conference coordinator and Vice-President Natka Bianchini (nbianchini@loyola.edu).

The Edward Albee Society on the Internet:

The Edward Albee Society Website features a bibliography of scholarly books about Albee and a chronological list of his works with links to summaries and analyses of his most prominent plays. We continue to add resources for scholars, teachers, theatre artists, and fans to the Edward Albee Society website (e.g., mini-articles on Albee’s plays). The website now allows you to pay membership dues or to make a donation to the EAS using PayPal. The EAS Facebook page has nearly 300 likes, and we continue to post information about upcoming or recent productions and Albee panels at academic conferences.

EAS website editor and board member Lincoln Konkle will be teaching an upper-level undergraduate seminar on Albee and Gender & Sexuality during the spring 2016 semester.

Look for our new “members only” content to start up in 2016 – and we need more members to help alert us to Albee productions, conference panels, and other events of interest for our Facebook and web pages. Contact Lincoln Konkle (konkleli@tcnj.edu) for more information about how you can get involved!

The Edward Albee Review (now New Perspectives in Edward Albee Studies)

The first volume (edited by Michael Y. Bennett), Edward Albee and Absurdism, in the new book series, New Perspectives in Edward Albee Studies—the official publication of the Edward Albee Society, and published by Brill—is coming together in its final form and will be published by the end of 2016.

The second volume (edited by John M. Clum and Cormac O’Brien), Edward Albee and Gender/Sexuality, is currently accepting articles on the topic, but is in particular need of two lengthy review-essays, each one 15-20,000 words:

1) a review-essay that synthesizes, characterizes, and complicates the history of Albee criticism related to the topic of gender/sexuality, and

2) a review-essay that synthesizes, characterizes, and complicates the history of performance reviews of Albee’s plays as they relate to the topic of gender/sexuality).

The review-essays are particularly good essays for advanced graduate students and/or recent PhDs on the job market. If you would like to write one of the review-essays or know of an advanced grad student or recent PhD/MFA graduate that would be well suited and qualified to write one of these review-essays, please direct your inquiries and/or questions to John M. Clum (jclum1941@gmail.com), Cormac O’Brien (cormac.obrien@ucd.ie), and/or the Series Editor, Michael Y. Bennett (bennettm@uww.edu). Also, feel free to inquire about or submit articles to any/all of the above editors at the email addresses provided above.

Editor of New Perspectives in Edward Albee Studies:
Michael Y. Bennett (University of Wisconsin-Whitewater)

Advisory Board:
Linda Ben-Zvi (Tel Aviv University)
Natka Bianchini (Loyola University Maryland)
Stephen Bottoms (University of Manchester)
John M. Clum (Duke University)
David A. Crespy (University of Missouri)
Norma Jenckes (University of Cincinnati)
Philip Kolin (University of Southern Mississippi)
Lincoln Konkle (The College of New Jersey)
Brenda Murphy (University of Connecticut)
Matthew Roudané (Georgia State University)

Upcoming Volumes:
Volume #1 ­ “Albee and Absurdism” (2016)
Volume #2 ­ “Edward Albee and Sexuality/Gender” (2017)
Volume #3 ­ “Edward Albee as a Theatrical and Dramatic Innovator” (2018)
Volume #4 ­ “Edward Albee’s Influence on American Drama”
Volume #5 ­ “Edward Albee’s Own Influences”

The purposes of the Albee Society are the exploration of Albee’s life and works by means of historical and critical writing, artistic performances on stage, film, television, radio and recordings, by the amassing of historical documentation, and by publications and conference presentations devoted to Albee and his plays. The subjects of study shall include not only Albee and his works, but all aspects of the American and World Theatre he has affected by his own work in theatre as a playwright, director and producer. Furthermore the Albee Society will support efforts that affirm the notion of drama as literature, and encourage projects that support new dramatic work by new playwrights, as an extension of Edward Albee’s own Playwrights Unit, which he founded in 1963 with his producing partners Richard Barr and Clinton Wilder. We are affiliated with New York City’s Cherry Lane Theatre under the artistic direction of Angelina Fiordellisi.

Please pass this email along to your colleagues and any family or friends who are fans of Albee so that we may build our membership! And if you know any major theatre artists or producers or other luminaries whom you think might assist us in funding, please let me know!

LIFETIME MEMBERS OF THE EDWARD ALBEE SOCIETY
Robyn Bird
David Crespy
Angelina Fiordellisi
Norma Jenckes
Peter Mayer
Hartley Wright

Our elected officers are:

President & Treasurer: David Crespy
Professor of Theatre
University of Missouri

Vice President: Natka Bianchini
Associate Professor of Theatre
Loyola University Maryland

Secretary: Ashley Gallagher
Teacher, Lawton C. Johnson Summit Middle School
and Theatre Studies M.A. Candidate, Montclair State University

Website Editor: Lincoln Konkle
Professor of English
The College of New Jersey

Editor of New Perspectives in Edward Albee Studies: Michael Y. Bennett
Associate Professor of English
University of Wisconsin-Whitewater

International Secretary: Valentine Vasak
Ph.D. Candidate, Université Paris Sorbonne

Our Board of Directors consists of Brenda Murphy, Lincoln Konkle, Ashley Gallagher, Michael Bennett, and David Crespy.

Thank you for your ongoing support!

Dr. David A. Crespy
Professor of Playwriting, Acting, & Dramatic Literature
Artistic Director, Missouri Playwrights Workshop
Co-Director, MU Writing for Performance Program
President, Edward Albee Society

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The Legacy Project: Filmed Conversation with Albee Now Available

A collection of filmed interviews with theater legends — including Edward Albee — are available on iTunes.

As reported by ABC News, the Dramatists Guild Fund released six episodes of its two-part Legacy Project, which captures conversations between prominent and promising playwrights, composers, lyricists and librettists.

The iTunes haul will contain Sondheim talking with Adam Guettel, Tina Howe interviewed by Sarah Ruhl, Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty chatting with Andrew Lippa, Charles Fuller interviewed by Lynn Nottage, John Kander talking with Kirsten Childs, and Albee interviewed by Will Eno.

“We are thrilled to bring this collection of insights, wisdom, and advice from America’s most prominent dramatists to a wider audience through iTunes, making the series more accessible to academics, students and theater lovers across the country,” said the Fund’s executive director, Rachel Routh.

The six episodes, each about an hour, are currently available for rental for $4.99 or purchase at $14.99. They come from a two-box DVD, 20-interview set that previously sold for $200 each. More interviews will be released on iTunes at a later date.

For the original article, please visit the ABC News website.

To Rent or Purchase The Legacy Project: Edward Albee Interview Through iTunes:

  1. open the iTunes application on your computer
    Note: if you do not have iTunes installed, visit Apple’s website to download the application. The “Download iTunes” button is located near the top right of the Web page. Install the application after downloading.
  2. in iTunes, visit the iTunes Store.
  3. in the search box (top right), type “the legacy project: edward albee”
  4. on the search results screen, click the product title, “The Legacy Project: Edward…”
  5. you will now be on the product page for the “The Legacy Project: Edward Albee.” From here you can read more information, watch a trailer, and buy or rent the interview.

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Scholarly Article: Seascape added to Works

Our website’s Works area continues to grow! Sarah Stryker has contributed a plot summary and critical analysis for Albee’s Pulitzer Prize winning play, Seascape.

Visit the Seascape page in our Works area to enjoy all of these materials.

We would like to thank Ms. Stryker for her contributions.

The Edward Albee Society’s Works web page is an ongoing project that catalogs the legacy and expands the scholarship of Edward Albee’s works. The page contains plot summaries, critical analyses, additional commentary, select bibliography, and overviews of collected editions.

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25th Annual ALA Conference Starts Tomorrow

Join us for the 25th Annual American Literature Association Conference!

From May 22 through May 25, the Hyatt Regency Washington on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC will play host to literary scholars, enthusiasts, and more with a series of panels, readings, and other events.

Among the many captivating presentations, EAS will present the panel “Influences on/of Edward Albee” on Thursday, May 22 during the 12:00-1:20 pm block. A summary of the panel is shown below.

Session 3-C Influences on/of Edward Albee
Organized by the Edward Albee Society
Chair and Respondent: Natka Bianchini, Loyola University Maryland
1. “Visited by a Phantom: Adrienne Kennedy’s Encounter with Edward Albee,” David Crespy, University of Missouri
2. “Albee’s Prototype of the Two-hander,” Robert Combs, George Washington University
3. “Postmodernity’s Influence on Albee/Albee’s Influence on Postmodern Drama,” Lincoln Konkle, The College of New Jersey
4. “Order… On its own terms: Hybridity of Form in Albee’s A Delicate Balance,” Jacob Juntunen, Southern Illinois University

To download the conference program or for information on procedures, paper proposals, fees, and other topics, please visit the 2014 ALA Conference webpage.

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Glenn Close and John Lithgow Will Return to Broadway in A Delicate Balance

Glenn Close, John Lithgow, Lindsay Duncan, Bob Balaban, Clare Higgins, and Martha Plimpton will star in a fall Broadway revival of Edward Albee’s A Delicate Balance, producer Scott Rudin has announced. The revival, to be directed by Tony winner Pam MacKinnon, will play a limited engagement at the John Golden Theatre beginning October 20. Opening night is set for November 20.

Visit Playbill.com to read the complete article.

Glenn Close and John Lithgow A Delicate Balance Announcement

Glenn Close and John Lithgow will headline a fall Broadway revival of Edward Albee’s A Delicate Balance at the John Golden Theatre. (Photo by TheaterMania.com and David Gordon)

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2014 American Literature Association Conference

Join us Thursday, May 22 for the 25th Annual American Literature Association Conference!

From May 22 through May 25, the Hyatt Regency Washington on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC will play host to literary scholars, enthusiasts, and more with a series of panels, readings, and other events.

Among the many captivating presentations, EAS will present the panel “Influences on/of Edward Albee” on Thursday, May 22 during the 12:00-1:20 pm block. A summary of the panel is shown below.

Session 3-C Influences on/of Edward Albee
Organized by the Edward Albee Society
Chair and Respondent: Natka Bianchini, Loyola University Maryland
1. “Visited by a Phantom: Adrienne Kennedy’s Encounter with Edward Albee,” David Crespy, University of Missouri
2. “Albee’s Prototype of the Two-hander,” Robert Combs, George Washington University
3. “Postmodernity’s Influence on Albee/Albee’s Influence on Postmodern Drama,” Lincoln Konkle, The College of New Jersey
4. “Order… On its own terms: Hybridity of Form in Albee’s A Delicate Balance,” Jacob Juntunen, Southern Illinois University

To download the conference program or for information on procedures, paper proposals, fees, and other topics, please visit the 2014 ALA Conference webpage.

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