Works and Manuscripts
These works and manuscripts includ the various drafts of The Rimers of Eldritch he wrote, as Wilson first developed the play from his initial character notes and dialogue, and then continued to fill out acts one and two of the play. Wilson’s first script was the one he directed himself for the 1966 off-off Broadway production of The Rimers of Eldritch at La MaMa Experimental Theatre Company featuring Michael Warren Powell as Robert, and Tanya Berezin as Evelyn. Powell had traveled with Wilson when Lanford first made the journey from Chicago to New York City, and later ran Circle East, a play lab that grew out of Circle Repertory Theatre. Berezin went on to originate other roles in Lanford Wilson’s plays, and then took the mantle of artistic director of Circle Repertory Theatre after Marshall W. Mason stepped down from that role, and became the executor of the Lanford Wilson Estate. The script was subsequently further developed for the 1967 professional production, at the Cherry Lane Theatre, produced by Theatre 1967 (Edward Albee, Richard Barr, and Clinton Wilder), and directed by Michael Kahn, with a professional design by William Ritman, who had designed all of Albee’s productions on and off-Broadway.
In the manuscripts you see here, we can note that there were two drafts completed, the first finished on May 26, 1966, and another completed on June 16, 1966, about a month from the opening at La MaMa on July 13, 1966. Wilson further revised the play for the 1967 professional production at the Cherry Lane Theatre.