Monday, January 6, 2014

Thoughts about Anna E. Crouse

Today the Web site for The New York Times ran an obituary by Bruce Weber for Anna E. Crouse. I knew about her only as the widow the of playwright Russel Crouse and, on a more personal level, the mother of the actress Lindsay Crouse. That "personal level" came from my having written one of my first "serious" dance reviews about the piece that Lindsay had created for her Senior Thesis at Radcliffe. What I did not know until I read Weber's piece was that Anna Crouse had be instrumental in creating the TKTS booth in Duffy Square, a major institution for those of us who could only enjoy New York theater on the cheap. Weber also observed that she "was a central figure in the resuscitation of Lincoln Center Theater," which, on the basis of some of the productions I saw after that "resuscitation" definitely makes her worth remembering. Anna Crouse was clearly someone who believed that the performing arts should be for everyone; and, with everyone so locked in to market-based thinking, I have to wonder whether anyone with her mindset remains to carry on her visions.

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