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Torch Song Trilogy Criticism

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Reviews for Torch Song Trilogy were generally positive with most of the negative commentary focusing on the play's considerable length (four hours). In his review for the New York Times, Mel Gussow called Fierstein's play an "illuminating portrait of a man who laughs, and makes us laugh, to keep from collapsing." Fierstein's portrayal of Arnold (while other actors have assumed the role, the playwright is the actor most closely associated with Arnold) is often cited by reviewers as the centerpiece of the play. Gussow echoed this sentiment, equating Arnold and Fierstein as a single person. Gussow noted that he found himself "enjoying Arnold's wit—he has the pithy humor of a Fran Lebowitz—at the same time I was moved by his dilemma. He is a man of principle who compulsively plays the fool."

Gussow also observed that "the author is so accomplished at playing Arnold that he...

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This section contains 671 words
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Torch Song Trilogy from Drama for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.