Another Early Mormon Drama

As I’ve looked at 19th century newspapers and other documents, I’ve come across literary works or references to literary works that I didn’t know about, and that, apparently, are unknown among those of us interested in Mormon literature. Yesterday, I discovered another.

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Monsters & Mormons: Call for Submissions

A Motley Vision and Peculiar Pages are pleased to announce a call for submissions for the Monsters & Mormons anthology. Theric and William are very excited about this project and look forward to working with you all. We’ve tried to be as thorough as possible in this call for submissions, but if you have questions, leave them in the comments section below or e-mail monsters@motleyvision.org.

PURPOSE

As Terryl Givens documents in The Viper on the Hearth, from Zane Grey to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Mormons served as stock villains in the early days of genre fiction (both pre-pulp and pulp heyday). We propose to recast, reclaim and simply mess with that tradition by making Mormon characters, settings and ideas the protagonists of genre-oriented stories to appear in an anthology simply titled Monsters & Mormons. This is, then, a project of cultural reappropriation. But even more than that, we just want us all to have fun with the concept. Continue reading “Monsters & Mormons: Call for Submissions”

Tom Lyne and the Theatre in Nauvoo

We don’t often delve into the history of Mormonism in the arts, although I don’t think that is by design. More likely, this history is simply not very well known among even those of us who write about Mormon culture, and, I suspect, many details simply aren’t known. Other details were known at one time, but have largely been forgotten.

In the latter vein, I came across the story of perhaps the first major Mormon actor, Tom Lyne, who already had a substantial reputation as an actor in Philadelphia when he joined the Church. Here is an account of his relationship with the Church.

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Mahonri Stewart featured in Mormon Artist

Issue 5 of Mormon Artist features an interview with Mahonri Stewart as well as a reprint of his excellent AMV post The Art of Friends, Not Rivals: Shannon Hale and Stephenie Meyer. which was an important corrective, in my opinion, to some of the rhetoric that was flowing around Meyer-as-artist.

In other Mahonri-related news, Nan Parkinson McCulloch’s AML-List review of his new play “The Fading Flower” was posted just a few hours ago. It’s a very positive review, and I have to say Nan deserves major kudos for her enthusiastic support of Mormon theater. She seems to attend every production and review or at least comment on all of them. “The Fading Flower” runs through June 8. For details and ticket information, visit the New Play Project website.

Congratulations, Mahonri. I only wish I lived closer to Utah or was independently wealthy. Sadly, neither situation seems to be imminent. However, if any of you within the sound of my, urrrr, voice, do live in or will be visiting the Intermountain West in the next week or so, you have no excuse.

Mormon Play Publisher Purchased, Mormon Plays for Sale

Historically, LDS playwrights have had only one dedicated company distributing performance rights to LDS plays, Encore Performance Publishing. But that changed last year when Encore was sold, and now LDS playwrights’ ability to license plays is much less certain, since Encore’s new owner isn’t interested in LDS .

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