Story posted October 12, 2012
End of Summer
November 1-3 2012 8:00 PM – 10:00 PM
Memorial Hall, Pickard Theater
Written By: SN Behrman; Directed By: Davis Robinson
During the Great Depression, playwright S.N. Behrman wanted to write an "American Cherry Orchard of Capitalism" that explored the conflict between inherited wealth and contemporary problems of unemployment, especially as it affected young people. End Of Summer is a comic melodrama set entirely at a wealthy estate on the coast of Maine (Behrman got the idea while visiting Blue Hill). A young heiress falls in love with a poor college graduate who is starting a new movement for social justice. The passionate battles that ensue are complicated by an assortment of eccentric visitors, therapists, scientists, and friends whose self-interest and survival instincts often clash with their romantic ideals. An admirer of Shaw and Ibsen, Behrman's progressive theater of ideas uses rich language to explore the complexities of class warfare, romance, and generational and social upheavals with particular relevance to the times we live in.
Behrman grew up in a poor Jewish neighborhood in Worcester, Massachusetts, and eventually became a successful writer for the New York Times and a dramatist of high comedy whose writing is largely forgotten. Known for his literate and elegant dramatic expression of a humanist point of view, he never forgot his working-class roots, and had remarkable empathy for all of his characters, rich or poor. He once wrote "Comedy is the saving grace which makes life bearable", and a strong streak of tolerance runs throughout his work.
Free admission. Tickets available at the Smith Union information desk (207-725-3375), and immediately before the show at the Pickard/Wish box office. Free tickets for members of the Association of Bowdoin Friends, available at the McLellan Building (207-725-3253). Tickets available now.
Sponsored by: Funded in part by the Alice Cooper Morse fund for the Performing Arts
Presented by: The Department of Theater and Dance