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November 25, 1931

The Yale Dramatic Association and Vassar’s Philaletheis produced four one-act plays in the Yale Theatre, the first dramatic presentations by student associations from men’s and women’s colleges. The plays, “Long Christmas Dinner,” “The Happy Journey to Trenton and Camden,” “Such Things Happen Only in Books” and “Love and How to Cure It” were the first plays by Thornton Wilder—to this time a writer of fiction—to be produced.

Wilder (Yale ’20) had published the plays earlier in November and, hoping to attract New York producers and commercial production, he convinced the Yale “Dramat” to break with its custom of using men for women’s roles. The plays’ director, Yale faculty member Alexander Dean, travelled between New Haven and Poughkeepsie for rehearsals, only working with the entire cast in final rehearsals.

Programs for the productions, which bore the inscription “This Programme Can Be Read In The Dark,” glowed in the dark.

The Years