The primary Stages Off-Broadway Oral history Project

Celebrating the visionaries who created New York's vibrant Off- and Off-Off-Broadway theater.

Michael Feingold

Michael Feingold

Interviewed on: Wednesday, January 17, 2018
Location: Casey Childs' Apartment
Interviewed by: Casey Childs
Interview #120
Photo Credit: Steve Paley
"You take the risk. You dare. You try something. Try something old. Try something new. Find talent. Find the things that people aren't thinking about…There is always a place for more daring, always a place for more inclusion. There is always a place for more imagination."
Michael Feingold Highlights
Video Length: 6 Minutes, 14 Seconds
Michael Feingold Interview Part One
Video Length: 1 Hour, 38 Minutes
Michael Feingold Interview Part Two
Video Length: 1 Hour, 6 Minutes

Michael Feingold has worked as a playwright, a translator, a dramaturge, and a critic for numerous productions on Broadway, Off-Broadway, and at various regional theatres across the United States. Off-Broadway, he has worked in theatres including  American Place Theatre, Circle Repertory Theatre, Classic Stage Company, Lincoln Center Theater, New York Theatre Workshop, the Pearl Theatre Company, and Theatre for a New Audience. Feingold has translated foreign plays into English for numerous Off-Broadway productions including:  HAPPY END (1976), THE BEAVER COAT (1981), TOWER OF EVIL (1990), THE VENETIAN TWINS (1995), THE BARBER OF SEVILLE (1996), WHEN LADIES BATTLE (1996), MIRANDOLINA (1999), A WILL OF HIS OWN (2001), ANDORRA (2002), BELLE EPOQUE (2004), and MARY STUART (2006). He also served as one of the lyricists for BERLIN TO BROADWAY WITH KURT WEILL (1972), and TIMES AND APPETITES OF TOULOUSE LAUTREC (1985). Feingold also serves as the Chairman and on the Judges Panel  for the Obie Awards.

Michael Feingold was born in Chicago, Illinois and studied at Columbia University and the Yale School of Drama.  After graduating from Yale, he read scripts for The New Theatre Workshop and began to freelance as a critic, mainly for The Village Voice, where he eventually became a staff writer and chief theatre critic. Regionally he worked as Literary Manager of the Yale Repertory Theatre, the Guthrie Theater, and the American Repertory Theatre, and as a dramaturg and critic-teacher at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center. Feingold also provided translations  for the Broadway productions of Brecht/Weill’s Happy End (1977) and The Threepenny Opera (1989) and has translated operas including the Brecht/Weill  Mahagonny, Offenbach’s La Perichole, Donizetti’s Viva La Mamma, Marschner’s  DER VAMPYR, and Penderecki’s The Black Mask. In addition to writing regularly for The Village Voice, from 2013-2017 Feingold wrote essays for TheaterMania under the column title “Thinking About Theater,” for which he received the 2013-14 George Jean Nathan Award, making him one of the few critics to win the award a second time.  He had previously won it for his Village Voice writing in 1995-96. For his work, he has also twice been finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in Criticism.

Mentioned in Interview

Edward Albee, Marian Anderson, Maxwell Anderson, Frances Aronson, Jean-Louis Barrault, Samuel Beckett, Jack Beeson, Eric Bentley, Lee Breuer, Robert Brustein, Arnie Burton, Joanne Camp, Joyce Castle, Joseph Chaikin, Ping Chong, Carmen de Lavallade, Alvin Epstein, Tom Eyen, Richard Foreman, Gerald Freedman, Rita Gardner, Ira Gershwin, Uta Hagen, Oscar Hammerstein II, Michael Harvey, Henrik Ibsen, Eugene Ionesco, Lou Jacobs, Glenda Jackson, Gerry Jedd, Stanley Kauffmann, Stacy Keach, Adrienne Kennedy, Jerome Kilty, Nathan Lane, Lotte Lenya, Christopher Lloyd, David Mamet, David Merrick, Tad Mosel, Gregory Mosher, Ogden Nash, Mike Nichols, Carey Perloff, Harold Pinter, Nikos Psacharopoulos, John Rando, Paul Robeson, Richard Rodgers, Gordon Rogoff, Peter Mark Schifter, Michael Shannon, Sam Shepard, Paul Sills, Meryl Streep, Barbra Streisand, Elaine Stritch, Elizabeth Swados, Jeffrey Sweet, George Tabori, Megan Terry, Darko Tresnjak, Edward Villella, Nancy Walker, Kurt Weill, Arnold Weinstein, Kathleen Widdows, Oscar Wilde, Bert Williams, Henry Winkler, Florenz Ziegfeld Jr., American Place Theatre, American Repertory Theater, American Theatre Wing, The Broadway League, Chelsea Theater Center, Circle in the Square, Circle Repertory Theatre, Classic Stage Company, Cort Theatre, Delacorte Theater, Eugene O'Neil Theater Center, Goodman Theatre, Guthrie Theater, Highland Park Tenthouse, Huntington Theatre Company, La MaMa, Lincoln Center Theater, The Living Theater, Metropolitan Playhouse, The New Theatre, New York City Opera, New York Theatre Workshop, The Open Theater, Pearl Theatre Company, Royal Court Theatre, Shubert Theatre, Second City, Signature Theatre, Théâtre de France, Theatre de Lys, Theatre for a New Audience, Theatre Genesis, A WILL OF HIS OWN, ANDORRA, THE BARBER OF SEVILLE, THE BEAVER COAT, BELLE EPOQUE, BERLIN TO BROADWAY, THE BLACK MASK, BRECHT ON BRECHT, THE FROGS, HAPPY END, I CAN GET IT FOR YOU WHOLESALE, IMPROMPTU, THE KILLER, THE LANDLADY, THE LESSON OF THE MASTER, LIZZIE BORDEN, LONG DAY'S JOURNEY INTO NIGHT, LYING WOMAN, THE LITTLE MAHAGONNY, THE MARRIAGE OF FIGARO, MARY STUART, MIRANDOLINA, RICHARD III, THE SEVEN DEADLY SINS, THE THREEPENNY OPERA, TIME AND APPETITES OF TOULOUSE LAUTREC, TOWER OF EVIL, THE TROJAN WOMEN, THE VENETIAN TWINS, VIET ROCK, WHEN LADIES BATTLE, WHY HANNA'S SKIRT WON'T STAY DOWN, WILDFLOWERS