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Saturday, September 21, 2013

Autumn Plays

Autumn Crocus is a 1931 play by the British writer Dodie Smith. It was Smith's first play written under the pseudonym of C.L. Anthony. It follows a single schoolteacher who goes on holiday to the Tyrol and falls in love with the married owner of the hotel in which she is staying.

The Velocity of Autumn: In a simple Brooklyn brownstone, 79-year-old Alexandra lives a solitary existence with her fleeting memories and enough explosives to take down most of the block. At an impasse with her family over how she should spend her autumn years, Alexandra's long-absent son enters as a most unlikely mediator, to try and save his mother's life as much as his own. Funny and dangerous, aching and revelatory, this perceptive play reveals both the fragility and ferocity of life.

The Autumn Garden is a 1951 play by Lillian Hellman. The play is set in September, 1949 in a summer home in a resort on the Gulf of Mexico, about 100 miles from New Orleans. The play is a study of the defeats, disappointments and diminished expectations of people reaching middle age. For inspiration, Hellman drew on her memories of her time in her aunts' boardinghouse. Dashiell Hammett, who had been Hellman's lover for 20 years, helped her write the play and received 15 percent of the royalties. Of all Hellman's plays it was her favorite.

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