1931- by Claire and Paul Sifton
The Group Theatre’s 2nd production was 1931- by Claire and Paul Sifton. It was presented on Broadway at the height of the Great Depression and tells the story of a factory worker who is fired from his job. It depicts how far a human can fall without means of support. It lasted 12 performances before closing. It hadn’t been presented in the US in over 80 years, but the ReGroup artistic director Allie Mulholland found a copy of the script and copied it word for word. After tracking down the playwright’s heir, the ReGroup was given permission to present and publish the play. The Living Theatre in the Lower East Side was the ideal location, and by the end of the run, the ReGroup couldn’t add enough chairs to meet the large audiences. The Sifton family was able to attend, and they finally saw their ancestor’s play become a hit. People debated about the play after every performance, and often claimed it had been updated. Not a word had been updated, and the message was eerily relevant. A cast of 13 portayed all 65 characters and 25 scene changes, seamlessly choreographed into a 95 minute powerhouse.
Additional Websites: http://www.1931play.com