Living Theatre at Yale

September 11, 2009

Forty‐one years after The Living Theatre’s now legendary performance of Paradise Now at Yale Repertory Theatre in September 1968, which ended in the arrest of ten performers and audience members for public indecency, co‐founder and Artistic Director Judith Malina returns to New Haven for a two‐day residency at Yale School of Drama, September 14‐15. Free public screenings of Signals Through the Flames and Resist!, documentaries about the work of The Living Theatre, will be held at Yale Repertory Theatre (1120 Chapel Street, at York Street) on September 14 and 15 respectively at 7:30PM. The screenings will be followed by discussions and book signings with Judith Malina, Tom Walker, and Brad Burgess.

The Beinecke Library acquired the Living Theatre Archive in 2008. Among the largest archives ever acquired by the Yale Collection of American Literature, the Living Theatre archive includes some 300 boxes of records, correspondence, scripts, photographs, journals, diaries, audio-visual materials, personal papers, and publicity materials documenting the influential theater company and its founders and principal figures, Julian Beck and Judith Malina.

The archive documents in detail the Living Theatre’s development of imaginative alternatives to the commercial theater, including pioneering the unconventional staging of poetic drama, including works by Gertrude Stein and William Carlos Williams among many others, and various experiments in public and political theater and collective arts. This will be a premier archive for the study of 20th century American theater.

More information about the Living Theatre at the Yale School of Drama is available online:  The Living Theatre at the Yale; a description of the archive can be found here: Living Theatre Records.  (Images courtesy of the Living Theatre: Living Theatre productions including Paradise Now, The Brig, and Maudie).