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Caffe Cino (former)

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Where Off-Off Broadway theater got its start

Place Details

Borough : Manhattan
Neighborhood : Greenwich Village
Theater, Historic Site & Museum


Robert Patrick

At this location, 1958-1968, the Caffe Cino, founded by Joe Cino, housed American theatre artists who were given total freedom of vocabulary, style, form, and content, and who created modes of expression which have influenced all performing arts worldwide.

Artists who developed their talents by doing their first or early plays here include Lanford Wilson, Sam Shepard, John Guare, Tom O'Horgan, Jean-Claude van Itallie, William M. Hoffman, Marshall W. Mason, Al Pacino, Fred forrest, Fred Willard, Robert Patrick, Doric Wilson (the creator of modern gay theatre), Paul Foster (Author of "Elizabeth I"), and George Haimsohn and Tom Eyen, the authors of "Dames at Sea" and "Dreamgirls." (Mar. 2008)

Andrew Podell

Started in the late 50s, run by Joe Cino until his death in 1967, and considered the birthplace of Off-Off-Broadway and of out-of-the-closet gay theater in New York. Cino premiered the work of Pulitzer Prize winner Sam Sheppard, Tom Eyen and others.

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