From the depths of the Depression came heights of American artistic productivity, as the W.P.A. Federal Theater Project employed as many as 12,000 artists at a time, who churned out 830 major stage plays and 6,000 radio plays. This enormous artistic and social record of the Thirties is housed in the files of the Library of Congress, which lately has dredged them up to put together four dramatic programs for Tuesday evenings. Although there will be no costumes or formal sets for the programs, slides of Thirties set designs will be projected on the stage, and a concurrent exhibit will show posters, photographs and production notebooks of the times.The scenes and play excerpts, produced by the New Federal Theater, will deal with living newspapers the first Tuesday, black theater the second, then women and finally, the most light-hearted of them, a radio series. Artists connected with the original project will introduce each program with reminiscences of the era.
Dramatic Works from W.P.A. Federal Theater Project. Library of Congress Coolidge Auditorium, 1st Street and Independence Avenue SE. October 4, 11, 18 and 25, 8 p.m. Admission twenty-five cents. Reserve by calling 426-5394.