Tony Kushner Essay Research Paper TONY KUSHNERTony

Tony Kushner Essay, Research Paper TONY KUSHNER Tony Kushner was born in New York City, Manhattan, New York in 1956. He was raised in Lake Charles, Louisiana. Both of his parents were musicians, and they encouraged him to follow his dreams seeing that he took interest in theatre at a young age. He?s Jewish and practices the gay lifestyle.

Tony Kushner Essay, Research Paper

TONY KUSHNER

Tony Kushner was born in New York City, Manhattan, New York in 1956. He was raised in Lake Charles, Louisiana. Both of his parents were musicians, and they encouraged him to follow his dreams seeing that he took interest in theatre at a young age. He?s Jewish and practices the gay lifestyle. He was educated at both Columbia University and New York University. He received degrees in medieval studies and in theatre. He?s currently living in New York City.

Kushner started writing his plays in the early 1980s in and with a group he founded himself for theatre. He writes his plays with the intent that they are part of a political movement. He addresses moral responsibility in times of repressed political issues. Addressing crowds that are open to change and progress is what Kushner enjoys most.

His first known play is La Fin de la Baleine: An Opera for the Apocalypse. That was written in 1982. A Bright Room Called Day was his first major play, which had its opening in 1985. It draws compares Germany in the 1930s to the United States in the 1980s. It was performed in various regional theatres across America. Kushner has written other plays as well, such as Slavs! (Thinking Avout the Longstanding Problems of Virtue and Happiness), written in 1994. It is a short play that takes place in the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) and is about the USSR under the rule of former president Mikhail Gorbachev. It was performed in only two places; one was at the Actor?s Theater of Louisville, Kentucky and the other in the New York Theater Workshop in New York City.

Other plays are Millennium Approaches and Perestroika. They follow eight characters? lives over the span of six years, showing their feelings on homosexuality and the effects that HIV/AIDS virus has on their relationships. These two plays come together as a two?part, seven?hour epic drama that Kushner is most famous for. Its called Angels in America: a Gay Fantasia on National Themes. It was written in 1993. Kushner has been critically acclaimed for this particular work. In 1993 he won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama and also the Tony Award for the Best Play for the first part, Millenium Approaches. The second part, Perestroika, won him a second Tony Award for Best Play.

On ?Angels in America?: ?The entire

work is the broadest, deepest, most

searching American play of our time.?

–Newsweek

Along side those two Tony Awards and that Pulitzer Prize, Angels in America had also gotten Kushner two Drama Desk Awards, the Evening Standard Award, two Oliver Award Nominations, the New York Critics Circle Award, The Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award, the 1990 Whiting Foundation Writers Award, and last but not least the LAMBDA Literary Award for Drama. Not to mention in 1998 Angels of America was selected by London?s Royal National Theatre as one of the ten best plays of the Twentieth Century.

Kushner has so many more plays as well. He?s written such plays as Hydriotaphia, Yes Yes No No. And also adaptations of The Illusion, by seventeenth century writer Pierre Corneille, The Dybbuk: Or Between Two Worlds, by Shloime Anski, Steels, by Goethe, and The Good Person of Setzuan, by Bertolt Brecht. In addition to this Tony Kushner has received playwriting and directing fellowships from the New York Foundation for the Arts, the New York State Council on the Arts, the NEA (National Endowment for the Arts), the Whiting Foundation, and the American Academy of the Arts and Letters.

His many works have been produced and displayed at Mark Taper Forum, the New York Shakespeare Festival, Hartford Stage Company, Berkeley Reparatory Theatre, the Los Angeles Theatre Center, and the New York Theatre Workshop and the Actor?s Theater of Louisville, Kentucky (as mentioned before), as well as other theaters across the country and abroad.

Kushner is currently working on his next play called Henry Box Brown or the Mirror of Slavery. He?s also working on a new play with music called St. Cecilia and yet another piece called Caroline or Change, an opera, which he?s collaborated with Bobby McFerrin. It will be produced in San Francisco, California at the San Francisco Opera in the year 2000.

People say that when he talks at different lectures or other engagements he tends to speak about current philosophical and political topics, but without saying it in a manner to offend anyone or put anyone to sleep. And since he respects his students? and his audiences? intelligence its interesting to hear him talk about those timeless matters such as faith, life, and even death.

Tony Kushner can create comical and tragic characters that can bring even the most proud of people to back for more again and again. He knows how to manipulate a situation to make it entertaining in the most obscure ways. He fills the audience with laughter and the sadness in just a few moments of a play?s start.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

1) Internet: www.oxy.edu/departments/cpr/new/events/speakers/kushner.htm

2) Internet: www.shamash.com/nfjc/writers/about/bios/kushner.html

3) Book: Encarta Encyclopedia

4) Internet: www.barclayagency.com/kushner.html

1) Internet: www.oxy.edu/departments/cpr/new/events/speakers/kushner.htm

2) Internet: www.shamash.com/nfjc/writers/about/bios/kushner.html

3) Book: Encarta Encyclopedia

4) Internet: www.barclayagency.com/kushner.html