Published February 17, 2021
"TRIFLES" by Susan Glaspell
April 9 – 10, 2021 @ 7:30pm
April 11, 2021 @ 2pm & 7:30pm
$6.00 general | $4.00 student & seniors | $10.00 group viewing
When Mr. Wright, a rural Nebraskan farmer, is found strangled in his bed, his wife is jailed as the main suspect. But as the men charged with solving the case descend on the couple’s farmhouse, the men’s wives begin to find evidence of their own. Susan Glaspell’s one-act drama “Trifles,” which was loosely based on a real murder she covered as a journalist, is frequently listed among the best plays of early twentieth-century American theatre. A feminist whodunit with high stakes, “Trifles” is masterful in its realistic language, crisp pace, and dynamic women characters.
UB Theatre and Dance will stream two versions of “Trifles,” under the direction of assistant professor and associate chair Dr. Meredith Conti. “’Trifles’ is a character-driven piece that explores how long distances and extreme isolation affect human relationships, as well as the hope that can be found in supportive communities," Conti remarks. "It may have been first performed in 1916, but ‘Trifles’ feels perfectly crafted to speak to our present moment. With two casts of actors and Zoom as our artistic medium, we will be able to explore the diverse issues in Glaspell’s play in ways unique to 2021.”
Susan Glaspell (1876 – 1948) was an American playwright, novelist, journalist and actress born in Davenport, IA. With her husband George Cram Cook, she founded the famed Provincetown Players in Provincetown, MA, whose members included Eugene O’Neill, Edna St. Vincent Millay, and Paul Robeson. Glaspell’s first play, the realistic “Trifles,” was a hit; she later penned expressionistic and historical plays, and her 1930 play “Alison’s House” won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama. Following Glaspell’s death in 1948, her written works—including her plays, best-selling novels, and acclaimed short stories—fell out of print. In the 1970s, during the height of second-wave feminism, Glaspell’s work was "rediscovered" and celebrated by a new generation of theatre-makers. She is now considered among the most important playwrights of modern American theatre.