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widowing of mrs. holroyd by D.H. Lawrence

the widowing of mrs. holroyd

directed by Stuart Howard

“As moving as anything I have seen in a theatre.”

-Derek Malcom, The Guardian, 1966

tickets $45! must order before march 6th* call (212) 315-0231 or visit *use code mar45

regular price $55.

performances at mint theater, 311 west 43rd st, 3rd floor.

is the story of a marriage in trouble. It is the story of a husband trying to escape the scorn and bitterness of a woman who resents the hold he has on her. It is the story of a wife trying desperately to make a safe home for her young children amidst the coarseness of a sootblackened coal mining village—safe from her drunken husband, from her meddling mother-in-law—and from the passion of the man who wants to take her away. “This is a moving play about the tension between men and women: the essential misunderstandings and necessary needs,” Clive Barnes wrote in The New York Times in 1973, when the play was presented at the Long Wharf in CT. “It contrasts the power of sexuality with the power of peace. And neither wins…”

mrs. holroyd

was written in 1910 when Lawrence was twenty-five and experiencing his first success as a published poet while teaching school in a London suburb. It was his second play and it expands upon a tale that Lawrence first told in his short story The Odour of Chrysanthemums which was unpublished when he composed the play. No producer was willing to take a chance on this grimly naturalistic drama whose ending is foretold in its title. However, in 1914 the play was selected for publication in the ‘Modern Drama Series’ dedicated to the best of contemporary playwrighting. The New York Times review of the book described its author as “practically unknown to the American public. Mr. Lawrence…has suddenly sprung before playgoing London as the author of a most terrific bit of

realism….It is terrifying to read, how it could be presented seems almost inconceivable…its truth is too overwhelming.” “I know nothing on the modern stage quite comparable…” wrote The Nation (London) while urging that the play be staged.

mrs. holroyd

received its World Premiere two years later in Los Angeles. Under the headline

“A tremendous, yet simple, dramatic experience.” - Clive Barnes, NY Times “nth power realism,” the L.A. Times review called the play “Poignant, gripping and vivid in its startling realism.” Its brief run was a great success—yet it was to be another fifty years before Lawrence received any recognition for his remarkable gifts as a dramatist. In 1965 the Complete Plays of D.H. Lawrence was published containing all eight of his full-length dramas and in 1968 three of those plays (A Collier’s Friday Night, The Daughterin-Law & The Widowing of Mrs. Holroyd) were produced at the Royal Court Theatre in London under the direction of Peter Gill. This Lawrence ‘tryptych’ began to shine a light down the dark mine shaft where Lawrence’s powerful dramas had lain neglected. The power and simplicity of Lawrence’s creation was immediately evident: “a truth and purity which makes the theatre’s normal currency of charm, humour and spectacle seem vulgar,” declared Ronald Bryden of The Observer. “Lawrence has given the English

Theatre as fine a work as it has produced in this century. Its fineness makes a critic long for means of compelling you to see it without resort to his inevitable vocabulary of praise or persuasion…It needs a language clean of blandishment and huckstering to convey the steelsharp purity of Lawrence’s writing here…Already he is a master of concentration, of burning intensity, distilling from a naturalism homely as potatoes a fiery, white and icecold emotion which shocks like a gulp of liquid energy.” Five years ago Mint Theater Company produced Lawrence’s play the daughter-in-law to critical raves and sold-out houses over an extended run. Now the Mint offers the New York Premiere of the widowing of mrs. holroyd. Don’t miss out—make your plans to see this powerhouse of a play today.

D.H. Lawrence was born in 1885 in Eastwood, Nottinghamshire. He is best known as the author of Sons and Lovers, The Rainbow, Women in Love and the notorious Lady Chatterley’s Lover (1928), which was considered to be obscene and was widely banned; Chatterley was not officially legal in England until 1960. Lawrence is the author of eight full-length plays, none of which he ever saw onstage in his lifetime (including The Daughter-In-Law, produced by the Mint in 2003). Though it seems that he never shook off the black mark of rabid literary censorship, his works remain to this day celebrated studies of human passion and desperation. At the time of his death, much of the public regarded him as a pornographer rather than a literary genius; yet in Lawrence’s obituary notice, E.M. Forster cited him as “the greatest imaginative novelist of our generation.”

order now and use code mar45

must order before march 6th

tickets $45! - The Guardian

“Extraordinarily eloquent” directed by stuart howard

by d.h. lawrence

of mrs. holroyd

widowing the

New York, NY Permit No. 7528 311 W 43rd St, suite 307 New York, NY 10036

paid non-profit u.s. postage

The Widowing of Mrs. Holroyd  

By D.H. Lawrence