From Harold Clurman's inspirational book, The Fervent Years:
"I enjoyed seeing plays -- my flesh had a natural hankering for the atmosphere of the theatre, even when the plays were contemptible -- but my mind was left dissatisfied. At that time I might have put it this way: In the books I read, in the painting I see, in the music I hear, in all conversations, I am aware of the presence of the world itself, I detect a feeling for large issues of human concern. In the theatre, these are either absent or diluted, frequently cheapened. The composers and the painters are searching for new words, so to speak, new forms, shapes, meanings. Aaron Copland tellsme he wants to express the present day, he wants to find the musical equivalent for our contemporary tempo and activity. Where is the parallel to all this in the theatre? There are little avant-garde performances here and there; Copeau speaks seriously about the theatre. Of course, the greaest poets of the past wrote for the theatre. Yet, despite all this, what I actually see on the boards lacks the feel of either significant contemporaneity that I get from even the lesser concerts of new music -- not to mention the novels of Gide, Proust, D. H. Lawrence -- or the sense of a permanent contribution to my inner experience that I get from some things at the Louvre, from the finale of Beethoven's Ninth, or even from the simple reading of certain classic dramatists. Where is the best thought of our time in the theatre, the feeling of some true personal significance in any of its works? Either there is something inferior in the theatre per se or there is something wrong about the practical theatre of today that escapes me. I can't live without the theatre, but I can't live with it. The theatre gives itself lofty graces, claims a noble lineage, but has no more dimension than a bordello!"