Last fall our Theatre professor, Mendy McMasters visited Clarksdale, Mississippi, the home of Tennessee Williams, where she completed her sabbatical research.
To explain more about her work, Mendy sent us this note:
"In September I went to Clarksdale Mississippi, the childhood home of Tennessee Williams, where I collected dialect sound samples for our students to work with while they developed their characters for our Spring production of The Eccentricities of a Nightingale. I explored the episcopal church where Tennessee’s grandfather was the minister and I discussed with the locals where they thought the town square might have been when Tennessee was a boy. The Eccentricities of a Nightingale takes place in a town called Glorious Hill, and Clarksdale, Mississippi was Tennessee Williams' inspiration for his typical southern town. Our protagonist, Alma Winemiller, is full of life and wants to experience all that the world has to offer, but feels held back by the restrictions of her parents, her community, and the time in which she lives. Tennessee Williams grew up feeling those same restrictions and is quoted as saying, “I’m Alma”.
How we sound is a part of our history, culture and family and is an important part of who we are. We have worked diligently to honor these characters' stories and the truth woven into them which includes honoring their beautiful America southern dialect. The cast and I encourage the CSUB community to take a glimpse into a different time and a different part of our country that is really not so different from today."
The Eccentricities of a Nightingale:CSUB’s Dore Arena Theatre
Thursday-Saturday, February 23, 24 & 25 at 8PM
Saturday-Sunday, February 25 & 26 at 2PM
Saturday, March 4 at 8PM
Sunday, March 5 at 2PM
Limited seating; reservations strongly recommended as this production normally sells out: (661) 654-3150
Reservations will be taken starting February 13th.
Note: latecomers cannot be seated
Mendy recording a woman from Clarksdale, Mississippi who knew Tennessee Williams.