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Encyclopedia > William Inge

William Motter Inge (May 3, 1913June 10, 1973) was an American playwright and novelist, whose works feature solitary protagonists encumbered with strained sexual relations. Image File history File linksMetadata Willinge. ... May 3 is the 123rd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (124th in leap years). ... Year 1913 (MCMXIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday (link will display the full calendar). ... June 10 is the 161st day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (162nd in leap years), with 204 days remaining. ... 1973 (MCMLXXIII) was a common year starting on Monday. ...


Early life

Born in Independence, Kansas, Inge graduated from the University of Kansas in 1935 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Speech and Drama. Offered a scholarship to work on a Master of Arts degree, he moved to Nashville, Tennessee, to attend the George Peabody College for Teachers, but later dropped out. Official language(s) none Capital Topeka Largest city Wichita Area  Ranked 15th  - Total 82,277 sq mi (213,096 km²)  - Width 211 miles (340 km)  - Length 417 miles (645 km)  - % water 0. ... The University of Kansas (often referred to as KU) is an institution of higher learning in Lawrence, Kansas. ... Bachelor of Arts (B.A., BA or A.B.), from the Latin Artium Baccalaureus is an undergraduate bachelors degree awarded for either a course or a program in the liberal arts or the sciences, or both. ... A masters degree is an academic degree usually awarded for completion of a postgraduate (or graduate) course of one to three years in duration. ... Nickname: Music City Location in Davidson County and the state of Tennessee Coordinates: Country United States State Tennessee Counties Davidson County Founded: 1779 Incorporated: 1806 Government  - Mayor Bill Purcell (D) Area  - City  526. ... Official language(s) English Capital Nashville Largest city Memphis Largest metro area Nashville Area  Ranked 36th  - Total 42,169 sq mi (109,247 km²)  - Width 120 miles (195 km)  - Length 440 miles (710 km)  - % water 2. ... Originally, George Peabody College for Teachers was a teachers college located in Nashville, Tennessee, and after 1911, was geographically locatated directly across the street from the campus of Vanderbilt University. ...

Back in Kansas, he worked as a laborer on the state highway and a Wichita news announcer. In 1937-38 he taught English and drama at Cherokee County Community High School in Columbus, Kansas. Completing his Master's at Peabody in 1938, he taught at Stephens College, in Columbia, Missouri, from 1938 to 1943. Inge began as a drama critic at the St. Louis Star-Times in 1943. Nickname: The Air Capital, The Peerless City Location in the state of Kansas County Sedgwick Government  - Mayor Carlos Mayans Area  - City 359. ... Columbus is a city located in Cherokee County, Kansas. ... Stephens College is a liberal arts womens college located in Columbia, Missouri, a city of about 90,000 residents. ... Official language(s) English Capital Jefferson City Largest city Kansas City Largest metro area St. ...

Plays and films

With Tennessee Williams's encouragement, Inge wrote his first play, Farther Off from Heaven (1947), which was staged at Margo Jones' Theatre '47 in Dallas, Texas. While a teacher at Washington University in St. Louis in 1946–1949, he wrote Come Back, Little Sheba. It ran on Broadway for 190 performances in 1950, winning Tony Awards for Shirley Booth and Sidney Blackmer. The 1952 film adaptation won both an Oscar and a Golden Globe for Shirley Booth. Willy van Hemert directed a 1955 adaptation for Dutch television, and NBC aired another TV production in 1977 Thomas Lanier Williams III (March 26, 1911 – February 25, 1983), better known by the pseudonym Tennessee Williams, was a major American playwright and one of the prominent playwrights of the twentieth century. ... Farther Off from Heaven is the first play written by William Inge. ... Margo Jones (1911-1955), born Margaret Virginia Jones in Livingstone, Texas was an American stage director. ... Nickname: Location in the state of Texas Coordinates: Country United States State Texas Counties Dallas, Collin, Denton, Kaufman, and Rockwall Incorporated 2 February 1856 Government  - Mayor Laura Miller Area  - City  385. ... Washington University in St. ... Come Back, Little Sheba is a play written by American playwright William Inge. ... Broadway theatre[1] is the most prestigious form of professional theatre in the U.S., as well as the most well known to the general public and most lucrative for the performers, technicians and others involved in putting on the shows. ... What is popularly called the Tony Award (formally, the Antoinette Perry Award for Excellence in Theatre) is an annual award celebrating achievements in live American theater, including musical theater, primarily honoring productions on Broadway in New York. ... Shirley Booth (August 30, 1898 – October 16, 1992) was an acclaimed American actress. ... Sidney Blackmer (July 13, 1895–October 6, 1973) was an American actor. ...

Inge's Pulitzer Prize–winning Picnic (1953) was based on women he had known as a small child: The Pulitzer Prize for Drama was first awarded in 1918. ... Picnic is a 1953 play by William Inge. ...

When I was a boy in Kansas, my mother had a boarding house. There were three women school teachers living in the house. I was four years old, and they were nice to me. I liked them. I saw their attempts, and, even as a child, I sensed every woman’s failure. I began to sense the sorrow and the emptiness in their lives, and it touched me.

Picnic had a successful Broadway run from 19 February 1953 to 10 April 1954 and brought Inge a Pulitzer Prize. He followed with Bus Stop (1955) and The Dark at the Top of the Stairs (1957). All three were adapted into major films. February 19 is the 50th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... 1953 (MCMLIII) was a common year starting on Thursday. ... April 10 is the 100th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (101st in leap years). ... 1954 (MCMLIV) was a common year starting on Friday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The Pulitzer Prize is an American award regarded as the highest national honor in print journalism, literary achievements, and musical composition. ... Bus Stop is a 1955 play by William Inge. ... Dark at the Top of the Stairs is a 1960 film with Shirley Winters. ...

In 1953 his play Glory in the Flower was telecast on Omnibus with a cast of Hume Cronyn, Jessica Tandy and James Dean. His 1959 play A Loss of Roses, with Carol Haney, Warren Beatty and Betty Field, was filmed as The Stripper (1963), with Joanne Woodward, Richard Beymer and Claire Trevor, and a memorable Jerry Goldsmith score. In 1961, he won an Academy Award for Splendor in the Grass (Best Writing, Story and Screenplay - Written Directly for the Screen). Omnibus was a commercially-sponsored educational TV series broadcast in the United States, primarily on Sunday afternoons, from November 9, 1952 to 1961. ... Although he never won an Oscar for any of his movie performances, the comedian Bob Hope received two honorary Oscars for his contributions to cinema. ... Splendor in the Grass, an American movie from 1961, tells a story of sexual repression. ...

Carl Van Vechten's 1954 photo of Inge

One of Inge's greatest plays, Natural Affection had the misfortune to open on Broadway during a newspaper strike, which lasted from 8 December 1962 until 1 April 1963. Thus, few were aware of the play, and fewer bought tickets. It lasted only 36 performances, from 31 January 1963 to 2 March 1963. What theatergoers missed was a powerful drama on the theme of fragmented families and random violence. As with Truman Capote's In Cold Blood, the inspiration for Natural Affection came from a newspaper account of a seemingly meaningless murder. The play centers on a single mother, Chicago department-store buyer Sue Barker (Kim Stanley). While troubled teen Donnie (Gregory Rozakis), Sue's illegitimate son, has been away at reform school, she has entered into a relationship with Cadillac salesman Bernie Slovenk (Harry Guardino). With Donnie's unexpected return, conflicts escalate into violence. The Broadway production, directed by Tony Richardson, benefited from composer John Lewis's made-to-order background music, which was provided via tape recordings, rather than live performance, and worked in the same fashion as a film score. Image File history File linksMetadata Inge,_William,_altered_2006-05-31_0959CDT_PsCSJPG12. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Inge,_William,_altered_2006-05-31_0959CDT_PsCSJPG12. ... December 8 is the 342nd day (343rd in leap years) of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... 1962 (MCMLXII) was a common year starting on Monday (the link is to a full 1962 calendar). ... It has been suggested that April Fools Day be merged into this article or section. ... 1963 (MCMLXIII) was a common year starting on Tuesday (the link is to a full 1963 calendar). ... January 31 is the 31st day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... 1963 (MCMLXIII) was a common year starting on Tuesday (the link is to a full 1963 calendar). ... March 2 is the 61st day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (62nd in leap years). ... 1963 (MCMLXIII) was a common year starting on Tuesday (the link is to a full 1963 calendar). ... Truman Capote (pronounced ) (30 September 1924 died 25 August 1984) was an American writer whose non-fiction, stories, novels and plays are recognized literary classics, including the novella Breakfast at Tiffanys (1958) and In Cold Blood (1965), which he labeled a non-fiction novel. ... In Cold Blood: A True Account of a Multiple Murder and Its Consequences, by American author Truman Capote, details the 1959 murders of Herbert Clutter, a wealthy farmer from Holcomb, Kansas; his wife, Bonnie; their 16-year-old daughter, Nancy; and their 15-year-old son, Kenyon, and the aftermath. ... Kim Stanley photo taken by Carl Van Vechten, 1961 Kim Stanley (February 11, 1925 – August 20, 2001) was an American actress. ... Harry Guardino (December 23, 1925 – July 17, 1995) was an American television actor. ... Tony Richardson (June 5, 1928 - November 14, 1991) was a British theatre and film director and producer. ... John Aaron Lewis (3 May 1920 – 29 March 2001) was an American jazz pianist and composer best known as the musical director of the Modern Jazz Quartet. ...

The final play of William Inge's long career was The Last Pad which premiered in Phoenix, Arizona in 1972. Originally titled The Disposal, the world premiere of The Last Pad was produced by Robert L.(Bob) Johnson and directed by Keith A. Anderson through the Southwest Ensemble Theatre. The production starred Nick Nolte and included Jim Matz and Richard Elmore (Elmer). The production moved to Los Angeles and opened just days after Inge committed suicide. The original production in Phoenix was proclaimed the Best Play Of 1972 by the Arizona Republic, while the Los Angeles production brought awards to Nick Nolte and helped introduce him to the film industry and his subsequent film career. Nickname: Location in Maricopa County and the state of Arizona Coordinates: Country United States State Arizona Counties Maricopa Incorporated February 25, 1881 Government  - Type Council-Manager  - Mayor Phil Gordon (D) Area  - City  515. ... The Arizona Republic is a newspaper published in Phoenix, Arizona. ...


Inge wrote two novels, both set in the mythical town of Freedom, Kansas. In Good Luck, Miss Wyckoff (Atlantic-Little, Brown, 1970), high-school Latin teacher Evelyn Wyckoff is the central figure in a poignant tale of spinsterhood, racism, sexual tension and public humiliation during the late 1950s. Polly Platt wrote the screenplay for the 1979 film adaptation starring Anne Heywood as Evelyn Wyckoff.

My Son Is a Splendid Driver (Atlantic-Little, Brown, 1971) is a fictional memoir that traces the Hansen family from 1919 into the second half of the 20th Century.

During the early 1970s, Inge lived in Los Angeles, where he taught playwriting at the Irvine campus of the University of California. His last several plays attracted little notice or critical acclaim, and he fell into a deep depression, convinced he would never be able to write well again. He committed suicide by carbon monoxide poisoning in 1973. For his small-town settings, Inge earned the nickname "playwright of the Midwest." He has a star on the St. Louis Walk of Fame. Nickname: Location within Los Angeles County in the state of California Coordinates: State California County Los Angeles County Incorporated April 4, 1850 Government  - Type Mayor-Council  - Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa (D)  - City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo  - Governing body City Council Area  - City  498. ... Carbon monoxide, with the chemical formula CO, is a colorless, odorless, and tasteless gas. ... The St. ...

Listen to

  • Jerry Goldsmith's score for The Stripper (including unused tracks)


  • Johnson, Jeff. William Inge and the Subversion of Gender: Rewriting Stereotypes in the Plays, Novels, and Screenplays. Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland and Company, 2005.
  • Voss, Ralph F. A Life of William Inge: The Strains of Triumph. Lawrence, Kansas: University Press of Kansas, 2000.

See also

ΣΝ (Sigma Nu) is an undergraduate college fraternity with chapters in the United States and Canada. ...

External links

  Results from FactBites:
About William Inge (1435 words)
In 1935, Inge graduated from the University of Kansas at Lawrence with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Speech and Drama.
Inge’s fame continued to grow as "The Dark at the Top of the Stairs," a reworking of his first play "Farther Off From Heaven," opened on Broadway in 1957.
Inge’s mother, Maude Sarah Gibson Inge, died in 1958 at the age of 86 in Independence.
The World Authors Series – Sample Profile of INGE, WILLIAM RALPH (421 words)
English clergyman and writer, was born in Crayke, Yorkshire, the eldest son of William Inge, a curate and provost of Worcester College, Oxford, and
Inge remained at Oxford until 1905, when he was appointed vicar of All Saints' Church, Ennismore Gardens, a position he held for two years.
Inge's major contribution to theology was his investigation of the place of Christian mysticism within normative belief.
  More results at FactBites »



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