By Ben Brantley – NY Times

It was almost exactly 16 years ago that I made my first visit to La MaMa in a professional capacity, as a new theater critic for The New York Times. I’d been there before as a civilian, usually under the influence. (I believe it was where I first saw a foghorn-throated drag queen named Harvey Fierstein.) But even then La MaMa had for me the whiff of another time, the patchouli scent of the 1960s, when downtown theater was longhaired, renegade and rude.

I wasn’t around for that heady heyday of La MaMa, the willful, playful brainchild of Ellen Stewart, who died on Thursday. Yet what I saw in the East Village theater that January night in 1994 turned out to be not only absolutely of the moment but also of the future. It was a rough-hewn, rowdy, dirty little play called“Stitches,” put on by a brother-and-sister team that presumptuously called itself the Talent Family. Their real names? David and Amy Sedaris. [Read More]