Q. So the decision to cut it before the Broadway opening was for practical, financial reasons?
A. I don't remember now what made me change it. We cut the underwater scene, but I don't know why I changed the ending. I like the three-act version. I like the ending because it's tougher. There have been several productions of the two-act version that have been too soft. They don't seem to understand that the lizards are constantly threatening and dangerous. They become kind of pets, and that destroys the play.
Q. Why do you think people choose to see these frightening creatures as fuzzy, friendly dinosaurs?
A. I don't know. Because it's safer and easier.
Q. Is that something you run into fairly often?
A. I'm afraid I do. It reminds me of the situation of the finest American play ever written, which is "Our Town." It gets turned into a Christmas card. But what Wilder wrote was one of the toughest existential dramas ever written. I can't see it without crying, and I'm not sentimental.
Monday, October 06, 2008
Albee on his Threatening Lizards
Louise Kennedy interviews Edward Albee about the Zeitgeist Production of the Three Act Version of his Seascape. Albee cut a third act, which takes place under the ocean, before the opening of the Broadway production in 1975.