Quotation by Francis Fergusson

The art of the theater—notoriously an "impure" art—seems to be as close to the art of politics as it is to poetry, painting or music. The theater artist, whether actor or playwright, depends on the interest and support of an audience, just as the politician depends upon his constituency. The politician cannot practice his art at all without a grant from his constituency; and so he must first of all woo it. And the theater artist cannot practice his art without real people assembled before a real stage; a theater without an audience is a contradiction in terms. That is why both politics and the theater are necessarily so close to the public mood and the public mind of their times.
Francis Fergusson (1904–1986), U.S. drama critic, educator. "The American Theater between the Wars," The Human Image in Dramatic Literature, Doubleday (1957).
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