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The Eccentricities of a Nightingale

The Eccentricities of a Nightingale
Your Price: $17.95 CDN
Author: Tennessee Williams
Publisher: Dramatists Play Service (cover may change)
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 57
Pub. Date: 1992
ISBN-10: 0822203499
ISBN-13: 9780822203490
Cast Size: 5 female, 5 male

About the Play:

The Eccentricities of a Nightingale has long been a favourite of acting teachers for Female Monologues and Male Monologues.

The Eccentricities of a Nightingale is a full-length drama by Tennessee Williams. Alma still lives in her stifling parent's home and is haunted by the fear of spinsterhood. When John, their neighbour's son returns for the Christmas holidays she sets her sights on the handsome young doctor. But will she confound his protective mother and the small time gossips by winning him? The Eccentricities of a Nightingale is a sensuous story of longing and rebellion.

The Eccentricities of a Nightingale is about a sensitive and lonely singing teacher who makes a final, desperate attempt to win the man of her dreams. Alma Winemiller, known as 'the nightingale of the Delta,' lives in her stifling parents' home in a small-minded Southern town. Suppressed by her joyless father and ostracized by the community for her artistic temperament, she finds solace in her music – and in the secret lifelong love she has for the boy-next-door, turned handsome grown-up, Dr. John Buchanan. Driven by her desire for truth and beauty, Miss Alma finally confesses her longing to John and what emerges is one of the theatre's most startlingly modern and complex love stories. Longing, loneliness and regret permeate Tennessee Williams' beautifully atmospheric drama.

The Eccentricities of a Nightingale was written in 1951 and debuted on Broadway in 1976 at the Morosco Theatre after being fine-tuned by Williams for 25 years; more than just a revision of his 1948 play Summer and Smoke, it became a radically different work of art. The play has become a favourite scene study vehicle in acting classes and workshops and is regularly performed in regional, high school, college, and community theatres around the world.

Cast: 5 female, 5 male

What people say:

"This is a warm, rich play full of that compassion and understanding and that simple poetry of the heart that is Mr. Williams at his shining, gentle best." — The New York Times.

"…representative of Williams at his most wonderful…the sheer poetry of his language still comes with surprise." — New York Post

"…a powerful, more often than not heart-rending tale of a spinster undone by dreams…some moments exhale a poetry beyond description." — New York Magazine

About the Playwright:

Tennessee Williams (1911-1983), one of the 20th century's most superb writers, was also one of its most successful and prolific. He was born in Columbus, Mississippi, where his grandfather was the Episcopal clergyman. When his father, a travelling salesman, moved with his family to St. Louis some years later, both he and his sister found it impossible to settle down to city life. He entered college during the Depression and left after a couple of years to take a clerical job in a shoe company. He stayed there for two years, spending the evening writing. He entered the University of Iowa in 1938 and completed his course, at the same time holding a large number of part-time jobs of great diversity. He received a Rockefeller Fellowship in 1940, and he won the Pulitzer Prize in 1948 and 1955.