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Love Letters

Love Letters
Your Price: $12.95 CDN
Author: A.R. Gurney
Publisher: Dramatists Play Service
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 81
Pub. Date: 1989
ISBN-10: 0822206943
ISBN-13: 9780822206941

About the Play:

Love Letters was a Finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1990.

Love Letters is a full-length performance piece by Off-Broadway favourite A.R. Gurney. A unique and imaginative theatre piece which, in the words of the author, "needs no theatre, no lengthy rehearsal, no special set, no memorization of lines, and no commitment from its two actors beyond the night of performance." The piece is comprised of letters exchanged over a lifetime between two people who grew up together, went their separate ways, but continued to share confidences. As the actors read the letters aloud, what is created is an evocative, touching, frequently funny but always telling pair of character studies in which what is implied is as revealing and meaningful as what is actually written down.

Andrew Makepeace Ladd III and Melissa Gardner, both born to wealth and position, are childhood friends whose lifelong correspondence begins with birthday party thank-you notes and summer camp postcards. Romantically attached, they continue to exchange letters through the boarding school and college years — where Andy goes on to excel at Yale and law school, while Melissa flunks out of a series of "good schools." While Andy is off at war Melissa marries, but her attachment to Andy remains strong and she continues to keep in touch as he marries, becomes a successful attorney, gets involved in politics and, eventually, is elected to the U.S. Senate. Meanwhile, her marriage in tatters, Melissa dabbles in art and gigolos, drinks more than she should, and becomes estranged from her children. Eventually she and Andy do become involved in a brief affair, but it is really too late for both of them. However Andy's last letter, written to her mother after Melissa's untimely death, makes it eloquently clear how much they really meant, and gave to, each other over the years — physically apart, perhaps, but spiritually as close as only true lovers can be.

Love Letters is the playwright's most produced play with its two-character cast who sit side by side at a desk. The man and a woman who share their complicated, loving and lasting friendship through 50 years of correspondence has been brought to life by extraordinary actors, including the A.R Gurney himself.

Cast: 1 woman, 1 man

What people say:

"A.R. Gurney's finest work, and one of the four or five best American plays of the '80s." — Time

"Exhilarating, funny, and moving." — The Wall Street Journal

"Delightful … entertaining … satisfying … The most charming play to date of a charming writer." — The New York Observer

"A mini-epic … Dialogue this fine can speak for itself." — USA Today

"A.R. Gurney is an extraordinarily precise and economical writer … His virtues have seldom been better displayed than they are in Love Letters." — New York Daily News

About the Playwright:

A.R. Gurney (1930-2017) is known as one of the most prolific and produced playwrights in America. His work focuses primarily on the issues and realities of middle-class American life and has been produced on international theatre stages for more than 50 years. He is also the author of three novels and a two-time Pulitzer Prize for Drama nominee, the recipient of the Drama Desk Award, and the Award of Merit from the Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters.

 

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