Garden Spot, U.S.A.
Garden Spot, U.S.A. by George
Garrett was one of the first of a group of plays commissioned by the
Ford Foundation in the
early 1960’s to foster new writing for the American theatre. Blackbird,
in a spirit of rediscovery, will, over the next few issues, publish those
plays that we can find that are available. The authors who were chosen
by the Foundation for the project had not previously written plays, and
the Foundation’s choices were made in consultation with the directors
who staged the plays. Garden Spot, U.S.A itself was produced by the Alley
Theatre in Houston, Texas, and was directed by Nina Vance in a full,
professional production that ran for six weeks. The author paired through
the Ford Foundation with Garrett in that Alley Theatre season was poet
Richard Wilbur, whose first Moliere translation served as his contribution.
Garrett envisioned his play as a comedy influenced
by the stagecraft of Bertolt Brecht, and like Brecht, he relies on
archetypes for the characters
and on a portrait of a community for its milieu. We are grateful to George
Garrett for the chance to present this lively artifact from his long
and distinguished work in American letters. In the spring, we will bring
you poet William Jay Smith’s The Straw Market.
Notes | Act One | Act Two