2007 Verve Awards

2006 Verve Awards


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Best Arts and Culture Blog Nominee

Monday, April 10, 2006

 

The Best Play of the Year. Period.

David Hare's Stuff Happens is not just a serious play, and not just an important play...it is the play of our times, a history play where the history at issue is still being written. It belongs in the league of great theatre pieces that shaped the political world, like The Crucible, Angels in America, Hair, Short Eyes, and for colored girls.... It is, simply put, the first great play written in the 21st century.

Stuff Happens puts on stage the real-life players of the Iraq War: George Bush, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, Condoleeza Rice, Tony Blair, Hans Blix and Colin Powell. Their own public comments and imagined closed-door meetings merge into a thoughtful, surprising, and magnificently compelling exploration of the build-up to the Iraq War. Perhaps most striking is its lack of liberal polemic...while the play certainly indicts the Bush and Blair Administrations for their failures, this is mostly an evenhanded critique of facts and lies, of politics and people. The company, led by Jay O. Sanders (Meeting Venus) and Gloria Reuben (E.R.), is a compendium of excellent craftsmen who emluate rather than impersonate their real-life counterparts. The direction, by Tony winner Daniel Sullivan, is spare, quiet, and sharp.

Listen to ModFab, folks: you HAVE to see this one. Stuff Happens runs through May 28th at The Public Theater. Every person concerned about the direction of our world should make time to experience it, explore it, and think about it.
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