If I were still living in New England, I’d be heading for the Kerouac Literary Festival…

…more precisely to the Merrimac Repertory Theatre in Kerouac’s hometown of Lowell, Massachusetts, where Beat Generation, a three-act play rediscovered in a New Jersey warehouse in 2005, will be staged for the first time this October.

Kerouac in 1967


Kerouac is an author I have followed since reading On The Road when I was a teenager. Beat Generation was written around the same time as a commission from off-Broadway producer Leo Gavin, but it was never produced or published.

Kerouac tried to get Marlon Brando and several producers’ interest in a production, but failed. After that the script was shelved.

It was rediscovered in 2005 and Kerouac’s then agent, Sterling Lord commented:

“It conveys the mood of the time extraordinarily well, and also the characters are authentically drawn.”

The play was apparently written in one night in 1957 and draws on his own life and those of other Beat writers including Neal Cassady and Allen Ginsberg, who subsequently starred in the film Pull My Daisy, which was based in part on  Beat Generation.

The Merrimack Repertory Theatre and the University of Massachusetts Lowell will deliver the World Premiere as eight staged readings –  the centrepiece of this year’s Jack Kerouac Literary Festival.

If you’re a Kerouac fan and near Lowell, MA, in October, this is something to see.


About btchakir

Retired Theatre Producer, Graphic Designer, Usability Tester and General Troubleshooter with a keen interest in Politics and The Stage. Currently heard on WSHC, 89.7 FM (on line at www.897wshc.org) and occasionally dabbling in Community Theatre.

Posted on March 13, 2012, in Announcement, Art, Arts, Books, creativity, event, film, history, News, Opinion, quote, Theatre and Art, Word from Bill and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. There are still a few of the beat greats around. Composer and musical wizard David Amram is still out there playing. He’s the guy who who wrote and performed the music for Pull My Daisy and accompanied Jack during his infamous poetry readings. Also toured with Dizzy. Check him out!

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