Saved by Angels?

We’re closing in on the end of our Writing New York semester with some texts that explore utopian and dystopian elements of New York City at the end of the 20th century and start of the 21st. When we first taught this course in 2003, most students hadn’t...

Etheridge Update

Melissa Etheridge concluded her run as St. Jimmy in American Idiot tonight. Here’s an audience video of her final encore: And I’m happy to report that I got my wish. The MP3 from her first night — and from every performance through February 5 —...

St. Melissa

Just back from seeing the Broadway musical production of Green Day’s American Idiot for the third time in three weeks, this time with Melissa Etheridge in the role of the drug dealer and possible figment of the main character’s imagination, St. Jimmy. To...

Astor Place before Starbucks

As many times as I’ve given my lecture on nineteenth-century theater in Writing New York, I’ve almost never been able to pace it right to conclude as planned with the Astor Place Riots, which is probably how I came to write this post last year. I’ll...

19th-century Theater Round-up

Monday morning we’re wrapping up the opening unit of our Writing New York lecture, which starts us off with the early New York stage. From last week’s discussion of Royall Tyler’s The Contrast in the post-Revolutionary city, we’ll turn to the...