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APRIL 4

Edward Albee doesn’t give a shit about his critics. Never has, never will. (“Critics…like to flex their muscles, create a Frankenstein monster, and then dismember it,” he once spat.) In fact, there’s a very good chance the 69-year-old playwright doesn’t think too highly of you, the common theatergoer, either. Maybe he thinks you’re a little too lazy in your demands for fresh and challenging stage material. Maybe he’s right. However mercurial Albee can seem, his rage and wonder at the world around him are part of his unconventional charm. His relentlessly captivating plays have run the gamut from absurdist (The American Dream, The Zoo Story) to commercially viable (Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Three Tall Women) to commercially suicidal (The Lady From Dubuque, The Man Who Had Three Arms). Sometimes it seems his entire existence, not just his creative output, is up for interpretation. “I created myself,” Albee admitted to a journalist, “and I’ll attack anybody I feel like.” Witness Albee attack at an open-to-the-public National Town Meeing, co-sponsored by the PEN/American Center and Associated Writing Programs, where he will be joined by writer Marjorie Heins for a discussion on recent culture wars and the current brouhaha surrounding arts, education, and freedom of expression. At 1:30 p.m. at the Renaissance Hotel, 999 9th St. NW. FREE. (703) 993-4301. (Sean Daly)