(Laura Collins-Hughes’s article appeared in The New York Times, 3/10; via Pam Green. Illustration: Credit…Antoine Cossé.)

A critic writes a plea to the film and TV stars who got their starts in the theater and can do more to aid its rescue.

Dear Extremely Famous Friend of the American Theater,

You’ve been on my mind a lot lately. I realize the pandemic has turned life upside down, but you’ve gone so quiet that I’ve started to wonder if you ever truly meant it — if all the times you spoke of your love of the stage, if every time you reminisced in an interview about how profoundly it shaped you, you were just … what? Following a script? Trying to fit in with your cast mates while you briefly returned to the theater, this time as a star?

I’d rather not believe that. It was comforting to think of you, out there in the klieg-light glare of screen celebrity, as someone who loved the footlights with a kind of tenderness, the way we do the things we cherish most. And the theater — the people of the theater, the people who built their livelihoods telling us stories in the dark — could really, really use some public cherishing right now.

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