On Friday evening of the Tennessee Williams Festival Kelly and I volunteered for the two evening theatre events. This was a stroke of genius from K, who earlier signed us up for volunteering, which scored us a free panel pass. We were pros at this, having learned about and watching people volunteer at AWP New York while working at the CutBank’s booth at the bookfair.
We nabbed the concessions stand, feeding the theatre-going crowd alcohol or alcohol and bottled water. We then saw the plays, relishing the night of free entertainment. The first, a one-man play, Bent to the Flame, featured Doug Tompos as Tennessee Williams on the verge of NYC stardom. This satisfied the Mark-Doty-Master’s-Class void by weaving in Hart Crane’s “Voyages”. It explored the personal connection Williams had with Hart Crane’s poetry. The second, Kingdom of Earth was a later Tennessee Williams play. It featured an impending hurricane, a nudie picture & cross dressing. The meaning was deeper than that, but these are the things I recall.