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Curse of the Starving Class

Full Length, Drama
7 men, 2 women
Total Cast: 9, Interior
ISBN-13: 978-0-8222-0261-5

MIN. PERFORMANCE FEE: $105 per performance.
THE STORY: The setting is a farmhouse in the American West, inhabited by a family who has enough to eat but not enough to satisfy the other hungers that bedevil them. The father is a drunk; the mother a frowzy slattern; the daughter precocious beyond her years; and the son a deranged idealist. As the family decides to sell the house to raise money, the mother talks of running off to Europe or Mexico; the father sobers up and tries to take control; the daughter is blown up in the family car; and the son is left brutalized and bloodied. In the end the characters become a metaphor for the underside of American life—benighted innocents pursuing a dream that remains beyond their reach.
Winner of the 1977 Obie Award for Best New American Play.

A major work by one of our theatre’s most respected and celebrated writers, this award-winning examination of the dislocations of contemporary American society was produced with great success in both London and New York.

“Shepard has fashioned a play of eloquent intensity, whirlwind farce and resonantly poignant insight.” —Time Magazine.