Morning’s at Seven: Paul Osborn’s Revival, April 1980

Paul Osborn’s Morning’s at Seven centers on four aging sisters living in a small Midwestern town circa 1928, depicting the ramifications within the family clan, when two of the siblings begin to question their lives and decide to make some changes.

The original Broadway production, directed by Joshua Logan, opened on November 30, 1939, at the Longacre Theatre, where it ran for only 44 performances. Logan changing the  setting to 1938, at the end of the Depression and the beginning of World War II, which was less palatable to audiences of that time. The cast included Dorothy Gish, Jean Adair, Enid Markey, and Kate McComb.

Second Production is the Charm

The first Broadway revival, directed by Vivian Matalon, opened on April 10, 1980, after 16 previews at the Lyceum Theatre.

The cast included Nancy Marchand, Maureen O’Sullivan, Elizabeth Wilson, Teresa Wright, Lois de Banzie, and David Rounds.

This production, set at its original 1920s period, was a great success, running for 564 performances and receiving several Tony Awards.

I saw it twice, once in a preview, the other during the run, in April and May respectively.

After 27 previews, the second Broadway revival, directed by Daniel Sullivan, opened on April 21, 2002, once again at the Lyceum, where it ran for 112 performances. The cast included Elizabeth Franz, Frances Sternhagen, Estelle Parsons, Piper Laurie, Julie Hagerty, Buck Henry, Christopher Lloyd, William Biff McGuire, and Stephen Tobolowsky.

Ever since it was written, the play has been popular in regional, community, and summer stock theatre productions. Surprisingly, it has never been made into a movie.