Blitzstein, Marc. (1905–1964) [Welles, George Orson. (1915–1985)]
Two Original Programs from the 1938 Windsor Theatre Production
Pair of original programs from the oratorio production of The Cradle Will Rock at the Windsor and Mercury Theatres, January and March, 1938. In fine condition. 6.5 x 9.25 inches (16.5 x 23.5 cm.).
The pro-union musical The Cradle Will Rock had won national attention for its creative team, which included composer Marc Blitzstein and director Orson Welles, when it was shut down before previews by the Works Progress Administration. Instead of accepting the show's closure, the creative team rented a larger theater some 20 blocks north of the Maxine Elliott, where the show was performed in impromptu fashion using the set for Caesar and two rows of chairs, with the cast in the audience and the composer at the piano. The Cradle Will Rock was presented by the Mercury Theatre as part of its inaugural season and opened on December 5, 1937. Presented by the Mercury Theatre and Sam H. Grisman, the oratorio version of The Cradle Will Rock moved to the Windsor Theatre January 4, 1938. In mid-February it returned to the Mercury Theatre and completed its 13-week run April 2, 1938.