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The Cave Dwellers

The Cave Dwellers
Your Price: $17.95 CDN
Author: William Saroyan
Publisher: Samuel French (cover image may change)
Series: Softcover
# of Pages: 130
Pub. Date: 1971
ISBN-10: 0573606870
ISBN-13: 9780573606878
Cast Size: 5 women, 9 men

About the Play:

The Cave Dwellers is a full-length comedy by William Saroyan. A group of washed-up performers take shelter in an abandoned theatre, grasping for a living by day and enacting their past triumphs and dreams at night, until some unexpected guests arrive. This allegorical comedy is by the celebrated writer of The Time of Your Life. Especially recommended for school and contest use.

The Cave Dwellers explores the adventures of a ragtag group of broken-down theatre folk who are camping out on the stage of an abandoned New York theatre (ironically named The World) that is about to be pulled down for a housing project. One who calls herself "the Queen" is the ruin of a former actress. "The King' used to be a celebrated clown. "The Duke' was once a prizefight champion. "The Girl' (she is too young to have been famous at anything) is a homeless, frightened wretch who comes in off the streets. Although food is scarce and the cold is congealing, the characters have glowing spirits and wonderful memories of their triumphant days. Humour, grace, innocence and improvisation distinguish William Saroyan's love song to People of the Theatre.

The Cave Dwellers premiered in 1957 at the Bijou Theatre on Broadway in New York City. The play is regularly performed in regional, middle school, high school, college, and community theatre productions and is an ideal choice for drama contests and one-act festivals.

Cast: 5 female, 9 male

What people say:

"One of the most enchanting stories he has ever told." — The New York Times

"...Saroyan doesn't set out so much to reveal something new as to remind us of what we already know but too easily forget – that we are creatures capable of infinite generosity. In the end, it just might buy us a little more time." — Los Angeles Times

About the Playwright:

William Saroyan (1908-1981) was an internationally renowned American writer, playwright, and humanitarian. Hailed as one of America's Greatest Playwrights, in 1939, he was the first American writer to win both the New York Drama Critics' Circle Award and the Pulitzer Prize for his play The Time of Your Life. He famously refused to accept the Pulitzer Prize on the grounds that "Commerce should not patronize art." He achieved great popularity in the thirties, forties, and fifties through his hundreds of short stories, plays, novels, memoirs, and essays. He has been described as "one of the most prominent literary figures of the mid-20th century."

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