What makes the blood of most stage performers run cold? Seeing the first audience on opening night? Hearing silence after delivering supposedly hilarious dialogue? Knowing there's a critic in the house? Well, yes, yes, and yes.

The Allaert Auditorium at the Galvin Fine Arts Center was almost filled to capacity last Friday evening when admirers of Edward Albee, author of such legendary American works as Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Seascape, and The Zoo Story, flocked from near and far to see their favorite avant-garde playwright give a public lecture about "The State of the Theatre & the Arts in America."

Edward Albee, author of the play Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? and a three-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize, will be visiting the Quad Cities April 8 and 9 for a Quad City Arts Cary Grant Residency. Albee will be presenting two public lectures and a pair of seminars.

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Seascape, the final production of the University of Iowa's Summer Rep season (called "Making Waves: An Edward Albee Festival"), is an interesting variation on a well-worn theme of the playwright: introspection.