Tennessee Williams' SUMMER AND SMOKE tells the sultry story of Alma Winemiller, a minister's daughter struggling to delineate love and lust for herself in a small Southern town in 1916. She is inexplicably drawn to her neighbor, freshly graduated from medical school, the wild Dr. John Buchanan Jr. Throughout the course of the play, the audience is swept up with Alma as she desperately pleads with John to renounce his life of carnal pleasure, all the while feverishly coming to terms with a blooming sexuality of her own. This lyrical, honest performance not only paints a vivid picture of Southern life during the early 20th century, but also transitions gracefully and candidly to the modern stage. Alma herself stands tall alongside Williams' great heroines, charged with a sensitivity and a repressed sexuality that illuminates the performance.
Most famously produced off-Broadway in 1952, The Den Theatre returns the play to a more intimate space where the audience is warmly invited into the daily life of Glorious Hill, Mississippi. Director Ryan Martin says of the piece, "Every moment is charged with this massive sexual energy, and Williams masterfully controls that energy, builds it and uses it to compose an almost musical rhythm."
The Den Theatre
1333 N. Milwaukee Ave. 2nd Floor
Chicago, IL 60622