If you judged the state of playwriting by this year’s Tony nominations for best play, you might think some unidentified virus had wiped out a generation of American writers. Three of the five nominees are British imports and another contender is a one-man show that is more akin to a stand-up routine than a full-fledged play.
This is particularly distressing because of the current crop — one of the largest in memory — of talented and diverse playwrights in this country, such as recent New York Drama Critics’ Circle-winner Amy Herzog and Obie Award-winner Dominique Morisseau. Many of them are under 40 and writing about subjects and in styles that interest their contemporaries, the very Gen X and millennial audiences that producers keep saying they want to attract. But few of them have been produced on Broadway.