October 31, 1980
In his senior thesis production Allen Newman ‘81 revived Bury the Dead (1936), an anti-war play written in his youth by novelist Irwin Shaw. Shaw’s expressionist drama was reviewed by The Miscellany News in May 1936, during it's first New York production. Bury the Dead, wrote "A.K." and "M.B.," "is the work of a 23-year-old Brooklyn boy, Irwin Shaw, who in this, his first play, tells the story of six dead soldiers of 'the war that is to begin tomorrow,' who refuse to be buried. In spite of the united efforts of Washington officials, their women and the Army, to make them lie down in their graves, the six corpses, desirous of the life of which they have been ruthlessly cheated in battle, climb from their trench to cry to an embroiled world the futility of conflict."
Discussing in an interview in The Miscellany News his two reasons for choosing the obscure drama by the celebrated author of such novels as The Young Lions (1948), Lucy Crown (1956) and Rich Man, Poor Man (1969), Newman said, "It's an excellent opportunity for Vassar actors to get a glimpse of what Method Acting theater was. Acting is Doing. The other reason is the theme of the play is 'now.' It's a play about 20-year-olds dying for a cause not their own."