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The Demise and Rise of Serious Theater in America

  • Santa Fe Woman's Club 1616 Old Pecos Trail Santa Fe, NM, 87505 United States (map)

Tony Branch, esteemed founder of BADA, British American Drama Academy, gives an entertaining talk about his forthcoming book.

Tony will discuss the development, demise, and future of serious theater, including Shakespeare, in Britain and America. He begins with the period between Elizabeth I and 1900, then the devastating impact of silent and sound movies, radio, and television, to the collapse of the British film industry that led to British actors taking to the stage, and the preference of American actors to work in film and television. Tony also discusses the vast difference in support for the arts between the U.K. and the U.S, the impact of musical theater, the state of serious theater today, and how we can help.

Tony Branch was a prominent member of the  Cambridge Footlights with John Cleese and Graham Chapman, but chose to go into business rather than show business. He came to Santa Fe in 1978 to organize the 1980 New Mexico D. H. Lawrence Festival, which featured such luminaries as Elizabeth Taylor, Tony Randall, Trevor Howard, Ian McKellen, Julie Harris, and Eve Marie Saint. He also brought the National Theatre to Santa Fe from London in 1982, then returned to England  to establish the British American Drama Academy (BADA) in 1983. He returned to the U.S. in 2006 and ran the Santa Fe Short Story Festival before retiring because of the financial recession in 2009. Tony's book, provisionally titled “The Crisis Facing Serious Theatre in the U.S.A.”  will be published later this year.

This will be a delightful and enlightening talk!

$10 at the door
Students are free