I'm sorry, but I have to insist: To save my sanity, you must all vote Democratic on November 7. Unless we get a Congress that will bring back a fully restored National Endowment for the Arts, the American theater will never be strong enough to do anything big on its own again. And my colleagues and I will go crazy sifting through the endless parade of small-scale, low-horizoned projects, geared to flatter wealthy wallets, that have replaced it. The theater is booming right now—booming with lowest-common-denominator peddlers trying to drag the stage down to the level of American film and TV. And guess which group of Americans, discriminated against by occupation, has to trudge to the sorry results—from six to nine times a week in a hectic month like this? Go on, tell me that's not discriminatory. Well, we, the victims, demand compensation: We want greater plays, productions of higher stature, companies of actors who, like us, give their lives to the theater (and get fair recompense for doing so). And we can only have those things with substantially increased federal support. Don't let the Republicans kid you—there is no longer any such thing as a purely commercial theater. Even the new work by ex-king of Broadway Neil Simon has come here from the shelter of a large nonprofit house in L.A. With subsidy scraping bottom, theaters that should be free to explore and enrich the culture have to stay afloat by playing whatever angles they can, and come up with half-baked items like the three... More >>>