Front to back: Peter Maloney, Anne Bancroft, Arthur Penn.

Stockbridge: Summer 1966, A memoir of the Berkshire Theatre Festival’s inaugural season — Part I (of 3): Beginnings and Arthur Penn’s Production of The Skin of Our Teeth, with Anne Bancroft

Arthur Penn saw his chance in a proposal that the Hungarian writer/director George Tabori and his wife Viveca Lindfors made to the board of directors of the Berkshire Playhouse in Stockbridge, where Penn and his friend and colleague William Gibson happened to live. The Playhouse had operated for decades as a typical summer stock theater, often featuring stars in leading roles, but what was known as “The Straw Hat Circuit” was fading in popularity and the theater’s board of directors, hearing Tabori and Lindfors’ proposal, decided to try a different approach to summer theater.

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