Original cover of the novella, 1949
Drama/ 18 Characters, 16 Men, 2 Women, some doubling possible/ Full Length, Two Acts
Synopsis: The mythical hero, Shane, rides into the life of a 10 year-old boy living on a homestead in Wyoming, 1889, and saves him and his family from the evil of the local ranchers.
From Oberlin College: “The story, seen through the eyes of a young boy, deals with a gunfighter who tries to hang up his guns but is drawn to the side of the boy’s family and other homesteaders in their struggle to keep from being forced off their land by cattlemen . . . . Considered one of the top three all-time great westerns.”
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About the Playwright: Kenneth Robbins is the author of four published novels and 21 published plays, as well as four collections of literary works. His work has received the Toni Morrison Prize for Fiction, the Associated Writing Programs Novel Award, the Charles Getchell Award, and a Corporation for Public Broadcasting Award, among others.
His works for the stage have been produced by the New Works Theatre, Dallas Theater Center, Nashville Academy Theatre, Theatre Atlanta Off Peachtree, and the Project Arts Center, Dublin, Ireland. His radio play, Dynamite Hill, was aired over National Public Radio and BBC Radio 3.
Jack Schaefer: A newspaper journalist-turned-author, Schaefer (1901-1991) wrote dozens of thoroughly researched westerns and was an editor of anthologies of western stories. Eight of his books were made into movies, but it is his first novel, Shane, published in 1949, and the film made from it in 1953 starring Alan Ladd, for which he will best be remembered.
Shane was first professionally produced at Caesar’s Ford Amphitheater in Xenia, Ohio in 2005.