John Steinbeck: Pipe Dream (301 words)


A Rodgers and Hammerstein musical comedy based on Sweet Thursday. Steinbeck had written his novel with its eventual adaptation to the stage in mind, but he had no official role in the production. As he attended rehearsals and out-of-town tryouts, however, he became deeply concerned about the entire tone of the show. Accustomed to creating wholesome, family entertainment, Oscar Hammerstein kept revising the libretto to make the material more and more innocuous, even to the point of clouding the fact that Suzy is engaged as a working prostitute at the Bear Flag; in his version, she may simply be rooming there (Morsberger, “Pipe Dream,” 89-90). Steinbeck protested to Hammerstein that “to avoid this fact that Suzy is a hooker …

Citation: Meyer, Michael J.. "Pipe Dream". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 24 August 2007 [, accessed 24 February 2021.]

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