ENTERTAINMENT

Charles McNulty

Columnist

Charles McNulty is the theater critic of the Los Angeles Times. He received his doctorate in dramaturgy and dramatic criticism from the Yale School of Drama. McNulty has taught at Yale, the New School, New York University, the City University of New York Graduate Center, UCLA and the California Institute of the Arts. McNulty, who got his theatrical start as a literary intern at the New York Public Theater in the days of Joseph Papp, is a former Village Voice theater critic and editor. He was the chairman of the Pulitzer drama jury in 2010. He received the George Jean Nathan Award for Dramatic Criticism for the theater year 2009-10 and was awarded the top prize for feature writing from the Society for Features Journalism in 2011.

Recent Articles

  • Character development counts in bringing plays to life onstage

    Character development counts in bringing plays to life onstage

    Shortly after savoring Rogue Machine Theatre's scrupulously acted production of Samuel D. Hunter's "A Permanent Image" and just before attending the much-praised Antaeus Company revival of William Inge's "Picnic," I felt awash in gratitude for plays that won't ever become classics but provide actors...

  • First GOP debate was more like a reality TV show

    First GOP debate was more like a reality TV show

    The first Republican debate took the form of a reality TV show contest with a novel theatrical twist: Each of the 10 leading candidates competed to become the true protagonist of a GOP primary contest so overcrowded there was an earlier debate featuring seven other contenders with lower poll numbers...

  • 'Citizen: An American Lyric' meditates on the trauma of racism

    'Citizen: An American Lyric' meditates on the trauma of racism

    Claudia Rankine's "Citizen: An American Lyric," a series of prose poems on the manifold ways racism manifests itself in contemporary society and burrows into black consciousness, glides down its own lyrical path with beguiling confidence. The collection, which includes meditations on tennis champion...

  • 'Spamalot' a summer treat at Hollywood Bowl

    'Spamalot' a summer treat at Hollywood Bowl

    It's hard to go wrong with "Spamalot" at the Hollywood Bowl. The Tony-winning show, based on the cult movie comedy "Monty Python and the Holy Grail," leaves no silliness unturned as it affectionately sends up the Broadway musical. Even a production as casually staged as the one by BT McNicholl...

  • 'Bent' exhibits enduring power of love, courage and identity

    'Bent' exhibits enduring power of love, courage and identity

    Moisés Kaufman's muscular revival of "Bent," which opened Sunday at the Mark Taper Forum, renders what many had written off as a parochial drama about the persecution of homosexuals in Nazi Germany into a gripping tale of love, courage and identity that today can be universally appreciated for...

  • Anna Deavere Smith takes on 'school-to-prison pipeline' in new show

    Anna Deavere Smith takes on 'school-to-prison pipeline' in new show

    With reports of police abuse, racial unrest and murderous hate crimes in the news on a daily basis since Ferguson, has Anna Deavere Smith, whose solo work has long grappled with issues of social justice, become discouraged? "Oh, no!" she said, almost taken aback by the idea. "Because I'm a dramatist,...

  • 'Girlfriend' visits the sweet, tender and perilous summer love of two young men

    'Girlfriend' visits the sweet, tender and perilous summer love of two young men

    It's hard to imagine "Girlfriend," the sweet, tender and innocent musical inspired by Matthew Sweet's 1991 alternative rock album of the same title, being set in our plugged in, hyper-distracted era when mystery has been severely dented by Google and nearly every fetish has its own app. This two-character...

  • A big 'like' for Caryl Churchill's 'Love and Information'

    A big 'like' for Caryl Churchill's 'Love and Information'

    It's only fitting that American Conservatory Theater should inaugurate the Strand, its new second stage in the city's tech corridor, with a recent play by the inexhaustibly original British playwright Caryl Churchill — a writer who has embodied innovation far longer than any of today's reigning...

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