Playbill Pride: From Angels in America to Hedwig, Our Top Ten Gay Plays

By Ben Rimalower
27 Jun 2013

2. The Normal Heart
By Larry Kramer

Larry Kramer has made a name on his anger with his notorious tirades dating back to at least the beginning of the AIDS epidemic, and he is particularly legendary for his work with ACT UP. His triumphant play, The Normal Heart (the longest-running production at The Public Theater) channels that anger so necessarily for its characters, and so necessarily for the audience — both in the historical turning point when the play first opened and in future productions when we have sought and will continue to seek to understand that moment in time and its repercussions. The anger becomes not an unsightly blight, but the electric current that charges the entire world of the play. The anger is so palpable it forces into view all the sadness and hope that are intrinsic to human existence and claims The Normal Heart a spot not just on the best gay plays list, but alongside the greatest plays of all time.

The recent Broadway revival of The Normal Heart.
photo by Joan Marcus