The secret, of course, is that it was never really there. I refer to the conventional theater against which all good Downtownites believe themselves to be rebelling. Oh, yes, there have been standard modes of plays and ways of playing them; no doubt one or two have even taken hold, over the years, on the lazy-minded souls who find life easier when they can believe there's only one correct way of doing things. But fighting them is a rebellion against lazy minds, not against a given form of theater. The simpler truth is that any artist who begins with a prescribed set of rules will spend the bulk of his/her career looking for ways to kick them down. The theater, where the rules tend to be given silly hifalutin names like "American realism," "the well-made play," "Broadway standards," or "the Aristotelian Unities," is probably the most flexible of all arts, and the one where expectations are most pleasurably violated. As with anything else you do in the theater, it helps if you have a good reason for violating them, since they probably evolved from the defiance of previous conventions in the first place, the way the wisecrack... More >>>