Oral history interview with Al Carmines 1992


Carmines, Al (Interviewee)
Jeffri, Joan (Interviewer)
Oral history interview with Al Carmines 1992
Side A: First experiences with acting: roles in religious plays; work with theater as ministry; first work as composer; family and childhood: parents' occupation and religious beliefs; musical talent: meeting Fats Waller, music lessons; religious beliefs: becoming a devote fundamentalist, work in revivals; attending Swarthmore College; siblings: younger brother; early opposition to segregation, par ents' thoughts on segregation; mentors in youth; early career aspirations; college education: hunger for learning, English and Philosophy studies, attending Union Theological Seminary at Columbia; recollections of the theater world in the 1960s: work at Judson, Cino, LaMama, work with people: Sam Shepherd, Irene Fornas, Paul Goodman; relationship of church and theater; influence of commercialism on theater work; work as an acting teacher/mentor; relationship to theater organizations; role in Theater for the Deaf: learning ASL; writing script for Theater for the Handicapped 'The Making of America', role as Gertrude Stein; artistic mentors and role models: Larry Kornfeld, Paul Tillich, Samuel Beckett; artistic and religious peers: Tom Driver, Bob Seever, Amos Wilder, Joe Chaikin, Jacques Levy; recognition from younger actors; gatekeepers in career: critics: Clive Barnes, Edith Oliver, Joe Papp; commission from Metropolitan Opera; relationship to money throughout career; effect of marketplace on theater; thoughts on making a career in theater. SIDE B: Receiving grants, importance of grants; influence on other actors' careers: making casting decisions; interaction with public; responding to social issues in artistic work; definition of success in career; next artistic goals: interest in writing an American opera; teaching work; greatest satisfaction and disappointment in career; thoughts on occupation versus career; occupation as minister; advice for young artists.
Collection Name
Research Center for Arts and Culture Oral History Collection
Actors; Carmines, Al
oral histories
Physical Description
62 pages; sound files : digital preservation master, WAV files (96kHz, 24 bit)
Interviewed by Joan Jeffri on March 31, 1992.
Note (Provenance)
Al Carmines, Gift 1992
Library Location
Columbia Center for Oral History, Columbia University
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