off-off-Broadway

Definition

Theater

  • In New York, the alternative theater that developed in theearly 1960s in the coffee houses and other small venues of GreenwichVillage and the Lower East Side. The off-off-Broadway scene aroseas off-Broadway productions became more professional andprofit-conscious (although today it is itself often used to test thecommercial value of experimental works).

    The first off-off-Broadway venue was the Caffe Cino on CorneliaStreet, a small coffee house where Joe Cino presented plays from 1958until 1967. By the mid-1960s several small off-off-Broadway companiesexisted, who introduced such new US playwrights as Sam Shepard, TerrenceMcNally, Israel Horowitz, Adrienne Kennedy, and Charles Ludlam. Notedoff-off-Broadway groups have included the avant-garde Open Theatre,founded in 1963 by Joseph Chaikin, the Performance Group, foundedin 1967 by Richard Schechner and re-formed in 1970 as the WoosterGroup, and the socialist Bread and Puppet Theatre, founded in 1961by Peter Schumann. The Play-House of the Ridiculous opened in 1967(see Theatre of the Ridiculous).

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