On this day in theatre history (July 28, 1916) Eugene O’Neill’s Bound East for Cardiff was staged on Lewis Wharf in Provincetown, Massachusetts. It was the first performance ever of a play by O’Neill. The seafaring one-act was so well received, Susan Glaspell commented, “it is not merely figurative language to say the old wharf shook with applause.” The moment the curtain came down on opening night, Glaspell claimed the Provincetown Players instantly “knew what we were for.” And indeed it was one of the greatest pivotal moments in American theatre. Less than four years later, O’Neill would win the first of his quartet of Pulitzer Prizes for his three-act drama, Beyond the Horizon. And, of course, he’d eventually win the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1936. And it all started on this very day in 1916 in a rickety, makeshift theatre on an old wharf in Provincetown.
- Today in Theatre History–THE FIRST AMERICAN-BORN ACTOR? WHO KNOWS?–March 13, 1790
- Today in Theatre History: WILLIAM WELLS BROWN’S “ESCAPE” LEAPS TO FAME–January 30, 1858
- Today in Theatre History: SHERIDAN’S FIRST PLAY, THE RIVALS, GETS A DO-OVER–January 28, 1775
- Today in Theatre History: OFF TO SEE THE WIZARD WITH DOROTHY AND IMOGENE THE COW–January 21, 1903
- Today in Theatre History: GEORGE BERNARD SHAW, “A THIRD RATE IBSEN”–January 9, 1905
padavis1715 on Today in Theatre History: OUT… Johne266 on Today in Theatre History: OUT… Off down Regency all… on Today in Theatre History: ALDR… Wretched Richard… on Today in Theatre History: NEW… Carolyn Mitchell on Today in Theatre History: AN A…