"Death Defying Acts" was a successful off-Broadway
show in 1995
that was successful mainly because it offered the works of three modern geniuses in one evening of theatre.
"Death Defying Acts" consisted of three one-act plays, one by filmmaker/humorist/screenwriter/actor/playwright/stage director and all round genius Woody Allen, one by two time Academy Award nominee and one of the "world's fastest humans" Elaine May and the third by the stylistic Pulitzer Prize winner, David Mamet.
The first piece in the evening would be Woody Allen's Central Park West, which was about a love triangle between an analyst and a woman, and the woman's husband.
The Elaine May show would follow, titled Hotline, which starred a foul-mouthed, suicidal woman who seeks help from a suicide prevention counselor on his first night and uncovers that he's worst off than she is.
David Mamet's piece, An Interview closed out the night. Which was about a lawyer who just arrived in hell and had to defend his profession during an interrogation process that will determine if he will stay.
Many community theatres have since put on productions of "Death Defying Acts" with the pieces in different order.
While there was no real creative collaboration between the three on this show, the idea of seeing three different pieces from three such established writers in one night is a brilliant idea.
"Death Defying Acts" continues to be staged in smaller theatres across the nation to this day.