Andrew Friedman considers and contextualizes Jim Findlay’s most recent work, Electric Lucifer—an adaptation of Bruce Haack’s rock-opera concept album from 1970. Against the backdrop of a post-9/11 New York City, Friedman elaborates on Findlay’s experimental theatermaking amid spectacles of human suffering in the twenty-first century. In a time when art no longer shocks, argues Friedman, Findlay’s work repurposes the confrontational attitude of the avant-garde by orienting it toward the insoluble impasse of desire and reality. Tracing the arc of Findlay’s oeuvre, Friedman interprets his Satanic approach to the hells of contemporary existence in Miltonic terms: suffering can be fleetingly transfigured through dream, ritual, and desire. For Findlay, claims Friedman, the theater proposes a redemptive power in which even “Lucifer is a love angel.”

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