American Buffalo won the 1977 New York Drama Critics' Circle Award for Best American Play. This volatile drama starred Robert Duvall in the original Broadway production and has seen revivals with Al Pacino and most recently on Broadway with John Leguizamo in 2008. In a Chicago junk shop three small time crooks plot to rob a man of his coin collection, the showpiece of which is a valuable "Buffalo Nickel." These high-minded grifters fancy themselves businessmen pursuing legitimate free enterprise. But the reality of the three--Donny, the oafish junk shop owner; Bobby, a young junkie Donny has taken under his wing and "Teach", a violently paranoid braggart--is that they are merely pawns caught up in their own game of last-chance, dead-end and empty pipe dreams.
FROM DIRECTOR LENNY MOTSINGER ON "AMERICAN BUFFALO"
As a director, you are often surprised by a play as you go through the rehearsal process. American Buffalo by David Mamet is one such play. Many Americans have been surprised by those who have been left behind by the American dream. Mamet's play focuses on three men who have been left behind and are down and out. Focusing on themes of loyalty, friendship, and success/failure, he puts a spotlight on those the American dream has eluded. The obscenities, as well as their homely exchange, form a litany, a kind of prayer of the dispossessed. Whatever your political views may be, we can no longer ignore those left behind. Mamet's words allow us to experience their pain.
I would like to thank Chris, Danny, Frank and Ann-Marie whose assistance made mounting this production so much easier and enjoyable.