This past weekend, I saw Judge's performance of the play Our Town by Thornton Wilder. The acting, lighting, costumes, and overall performance was stellar, but I wanted to learn a little more about the play and playwright Mr. Wilder.
Wilder was born in Wisconsin in 1897 to Amos and Isabella, the second of five children. Amos was a U.S. Consul General to Hong Kong and Shanghai, while Isabella held the first public office in Connecticut ever held by a woman. All of their children were very cultured and accomplished-Thornton studied at Yale, Princeton, and Harvard. He released Our Town in 1938, receiving inspiration for the play from Gertrude Stein's novel The Making of Americans(1925). The play follows the ordinary lives of several characters in the fictional town of Grover's Corners, New Hampshire (said to be based off the town Peterborough, New Hampshire). Through character development, we immerse ourselves in these citizen's worries, problems, and joy and in the end, find meaning in their short, uneventful lives. Our Town earned Wilder his second Pulitzer Prize.