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Angels in America on tour Back to the index It was a relatively small but appreciative group of St Louis theatregoers who braved the first major winter storm of the season to show up at the Fox Theatre Tuesday night January 2nd for the first part of Tony Kushners Angels in America entitled Millennium Approaches They were rewarded with three hours and twenty minutes of some of the most intelligent and compelling dramatic and comedic writing to grace the American stage in decades Kushner calls Angels a Gay Fantasia on National Themes and while thats basically accurate it makes this massive work sound more limited and specific than it really is A friend of mine calls it opera without music which is also accurate as far as it goes Mostly its a sweeping unapologetically theatrical examination of some of the most basic of human ideas love death loyalty commitment community and lots of other things that are usually capitalized when we discuss them Its an epic tale told as the best epics are through the lives of a collection of flawed and fascinating characters While the story line of Millennium Approaches is far too complex to summarize here in any detail the essence of it concerns two couples - one gay and one straight - trying to cope with the disintegration of their relationships and the painful self-examination that comes with it Their lives and even their dreams intertwine in bizarre ways not only among themselves but with historical figures such as Roy Cohn and Ethel Rosenberg as well And of course with an angel The play weaves all this together with a collection of brilliant set pieces monologues and comic and dramatic confrontations that make their points forcefully and without a single spare word Kushners writing is tight sharp and wonderfully literate in a way that I thought had simply died out in the American theatre Of
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