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Norman Rosten

NORMAN ROSTEN  (1913 - 1995)

Nationality:    USA
email:    n/a     Website:    n/a

Literary Agent:    n/a


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below is a list of Norman Rosten's plays - click on a Play Title for more information

Come Slowly, Eden         First Stop To Heaven         Golden Door         Mardi Gras         Mister Johnson



Come Slowly, Eden

Synopsis:
The story Is of Emily Dickinson (1830-1886), that strange New England lady who hid from the world and wrote her passionate, glorious poetry in secret. The play opens shortly after her death. Her sister Lavinia has discovered her poems in a bureau drawer: small packets of paper tied neatly together with ordinary sewing thread. With the help of Mr. Higginson, a literary critic of the time who had earlier befriended Emily, the poems and letters she left behind are used to reveal this contradictory woman whose life on the surface appeared to be one of puritanical denial, yet whose writing showed a human being hungry for love and personal fulfillment. The play is a search. We weigh clues in her poems and letters, and in the memories of Lavinia and brother Austin, as we reconstruct Emily's life. We see her as a carefree girl at home and as a young lady in growing conflict with her father; we witness her meeting with the minister who was to have such a crucial influence upon her. We follow the torment of her love for this man who was unattainable and watch her slow withdrawal from the world. It becomes clear that Emily was a creature before her time, subject to her day's social conventions but rebelling against them; cherishing an impossible romance but refusing to settle for less; and, more important, pouring her joy and anguish into her poetry. That poetry is embedded in the narrative as jewels within a crown. The play is an unsolved mystery, and at the same time a portrait-tantalizing and unique-of a woman who lived by her own rules and left her wisdom to puzzle and delight posterity.

Notes:
New York's ANTA Matinee Series

1st Produced:
Lucille Lortel Theatre, New York    05 Dec 1966

Company:
New York's ANTA Matinee Series

1st Published:
Dramatists Play Service, NY,    -

Music:
-

To Buy This Play:
If Publisher (above) is underlined then the play may be purchased by direct click from the Publisher, otherwise (below) are AbeBooks for secondhand, signed & 1st eds and other Booksellers for new copies

Booksellers:

Genre:
Play/Drama

Parts:
Male:  6            Female:  2            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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First Stop To Heaven

Synopsis:
-

Notes:
-

1st Produced:
Windsor Theatre, New York    05 Jan 1941

Company:
-

1st Published:
-   -

Music:
-

To Buy This Play:
If Publisher (above) is underlined then the play may be purchased by direct click from the Publisher, otherwise (below) are AbeBooks for secondhand, signed & 1st eds and other Booksellers for new copies

Booksellers:

Genre:
Drama

Parts:
Male:  13            Female:  3            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Golden Door

Synopsis:
-

Notes:
-

1st Produced:
-    -

Company:
-

1st Published:
-   -

Music:
-

To Buy This Play:
If Publisher (above) is underlined then the play may be purchased by direct click from the Publisher, otherwise (below) are AbeBooks for secondhand, signed & 1st eds and other Booksellers for new copies

Booksellers:

Genre:
-

Parts:
Male:  -            Female:  -            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Mardi Gras

Synopsis:
-

Notes:
-

1st Produced:
-    1950

Company:
-

1st Published:
-   -

Music:
-

To Buy This Play:
If Publisher (above) is underlined then the play may be purchased by direct click from the Publisher, otherwise (below) are AbeBooks for secondhand, signed & 1st eds and other Booksellers for new copies

Booksellers:

Genre:
-

Parts:
Male:  -            Female:  -            Other:  -

Further Reference:
-

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Mister Johnson

Synopsis:
Johnson, a young native in the British civil service, is a clerk to Rudbeck, Assistant District Officer in Nigeria, and imagines himself to be a very important cog of the King's government. He is amusingly tolerant of his fellow Africans, thinking them uncivilized; he is obsessed with the idea of bringing "civilization" to this small jungle station. Johnson loves the white man's ways and cheerily adopts them; he has an enthusiasm that makes his boss Rudbeck overlook his rather vague office talents. This enthusiasm centers especially upon the construction of a road (symbol of civilization) and when Rudbeck has difficulty in getting funds from HQ, Johnson does some manipulation with the books. His peculiar sense of bookkeeping, together with his disdain for regulations, lands him in trouble. He gets the road built but is discharged. In despair and anger at being fired by his "good friend" Rudbeck, he gets drunk, and accidentally kills a white store owner. He is condemned to death. Rudbeck tries to save him, but "justice" cannot be reversed. Johnson is caught between two cultures, belonging no more to the new Africa than to the old. He begs Rudbeck, whom he looks upon as a father, to shoot him rather than let him be hanged by a stranger. Rudbeck, seeing him for the first time as an individual, grants this last request and ends the boy's life.

Notes:
from the novel by Joyce Cary

1st Produced:
Martin Beck Theatre, New York    29 Mar 1956

Company:
-

1st Published:
Dramatists Play Service, NY,    -

Music:
-

To Buy This Play:
If Publisher (above) is underlined then the play may be purchased by direct click from the Publisher, otherwise (below) are AbeBooks for secondhand, signed & 1st eds and other Booksellers for new copies

Booksellers:

Genre:
Play/Drama

Parts:
Male:  22            Female:  5            Other:  3 men and 1 woman are white, the rest black Several roles can be doubled: 20 total

Further Reference:
-

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