The Dark at the Top of the Stairs
Country United States
|Director Delbert Mann|
|Writer Harriet Frank, Jr., Irving Ravetch, William Inge|
Release date September 22, 1960 (1960-09-22)
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The Dark at the Top of the Stairs is a 1957 play by William Inge about family conflicts during the early 1920s in a small Oklahoma town. It was nominated for the Tony Award for Best Play in 1958 and was made into a film of the same name in 1960.
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The drama centers on Rubin Flood, who loses his salesman job. While searching for a new job, he must deal with his wife Cora, who shuns intimacy and mistakes his joblessness for stinginess, his shy daughter who prepares for her first dance, and his pre-teen son who runs to his mother instead of dealing with bullies. He tries to find comfort with friend Mavis Pruitt, thus causing rumors of an untoward relationship.
Directed by Elia Kazan, the play opened December 5, 1957 at New York's Music Box Theatre and ran for a total of 468 performances, closing on January 17, 1959. The drama was reworked by Inge from his earlier play Farther Off from Heaven, first staged in 1947 at Margo Jones' Theatre '47 in Dallas, Texas.
Opening night cast:
It was nominated for five Tony Awards: Best Play, Best Featured Actor (Pat Hingle), Best Featured Actress (Eileen Heckart), Best Scenic Design (Ben Edwards), Best Director (Elia Kazan). Timmy Everett won a Theatre World Award. It was adapted into a film by the same name in 1960, directed by Delbert Mann, and starring Dorothy McGuire and Robert Preston.