An American Theatre

Dear Friends,

Today we want to tell you about a book that we absolutely love!

It’s called An American Theatre: The Story of the Westport Country Playhouse by Richard Somerset-Ward.  It has a forward by Joanne Woodward and Paul Newman.

american theatre book

We are absolutely amazed by this book because it has thousands of details about the Westport Country Playhouse.  We cannot imagine how anyone could have found so many events that happened over a 70-year period!  It even tells a story about how one certain Philip Langner forgot his lines in The Girl of the Golden West, which starred June Havoc!

While we certainly have an emotional tie to the Westport Country Playhouse, we think that anyone interested in theatre or theatre history will appreciate how detailed this book is about the story of summer theatre from the second oldest summer playhouse in the country.

You can order your copy from Amazon.

Westport was wonderful—the most fun we’ve ever had!

Also if you’re interested in visiting the Playhouse this summer, here is their list of shows:

The Invisible Hand (July 19-August 6)

What the Butler Saw (August 23-Sepember 10)

Camelot (October 4-10)

Click here to order tickets!

Happy summer theatre-ing!

Philip & Marilyn Langner

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2 thoughts on “An American Theatre

  1. I lived in Westport from 1956 to 1958 – I was in Junior high. I adored the Westport Playhouse.
    I got to see Hermione Gingold playing Madame Arcati, Faye Emerson in Witness for the Prosecution, Hume Cronym and Jessica Tandy in Janus, Hugh O’Brien and Susan Oliver in Picnic. I know there are ones I’ve forgotten. In 1960 I was back in Westport for a month and got to usher for all performances of An Evening With Mike Nichols and Elaine May. I even snuck in and watched them rehearse. I memorized most of their show. So much fun and such good training.
    Then in 1967, I went to work for you. More good training, One of the highlights of my year at the Theatre Guild was finding an old Tennessee Williams script, wedged in the back of a metal file drawer, behind some Stratford, Connecticut files.
    It was called Stairs to the Roof. I asked Miss Marshall if I might take it home and read it. It was like nothing else he ever wrote. (Characters included: God A and God B laughing in the wings, The Girl Who Loved Pigeons, and The Man Who Knew the Way to the Roof.) I returned it to the Guild offices. I wonder what happened to it? I hope it went to the Yale Collection.

    • theatguild says:

      Dear Susan,

      So lovely to hear from you; I hope you have had a lovely life since you were at the Guild. And I wish you all the best!
      Philip Langner

      PS—regarding the Tennessee Williams script, we don’t know about it. We will ask Yale if they have it and let you know.

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