The American Legacy
Metropolitan Playhouse
The American Legacy

220 East Fourth Street ~ New York, New York 10009
(212) 995 5302

"One of my favorite downtown theaters" ~ Martin Denton,
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 Horatio Alger Festival


January 16-29, 2012

5 premiere works by cutting edge artists
inspired by
the life and work of the chronicler of the American Dream

PLUS: A symposium with Glenn Hendler,
Hildegard Hoeller, and Festival Authors

in order of first performance

Shifting for Himself, or Gilbert Greyson's Fortunes
by Michael Schwartz
Shifting for Himself (or Gilbert Greyson's Fortunes) is an adaptation of the typical Horatio Alger story--a young man finds himself poor, but through hard work, good manners, and some good luck, he gets the best of cheaters, schemers, and layabouts in end-of-the-19th century New York City. Can pluck, integrity, and innocence prevail on Wall Street? In Horatio Alger's world, you bet your boots it can!

Another Horatio Alger Story
by Jason Jacobs
An impassioned teacher leads his impressionable student in an exploration of Alger's life and work ... but the charms of fiction are threatened by dangerous facts. Is there a true "Horatio Alger story?" What secrets do these tales conceal?

The Return of Ragged Dick
by Dan Evans, A LuLu LoLo Production
In 1866, young Horatio Alger, Jr. arrives in New York, an ex-Unitarian minister and budding author disgraced as a pederast.  Twenty years later, a fearsome stranger from the Amazon Rain Forest suddenly appears on the doorstep of this now popular but near- bankrupt author with surprising results.

Horatio Alger's Boys
by David Lally
Prey or victim?  A scandalous incident in Horatio Alger's past may affect his future.  A "ripped from the headlines" story, the saga of Horatio Alger did not begin and end with his "rags to riches" stories.
by Adam Klasfeld
One Armed Man exposes the American dream that dare not speak its name, with a staged reading of "Pluck," an early look at a new play by Adam Klasfeld.
The Devil narrates the despicable fall and triumphant rise of Horatio Alger, Jr., a fallen minister turned unlikely prophet for the American gospel of wealth.
In 1866, scandal strikes a Unitarian church in a coastal New England town as elders investigate Alger for "gross immorality and ... the abominable and revolting crime of unnatural familiarity with boys." Alger escapes arrest on the first train to New York, and one bitter deacon predicts he will “serve the Devil by writing novels.”
Adrift in New York, Alger ekes out a living writing books about street urchins, on the verge of adolescence, plucked from poverty by a wealthy older benefactor. The stories don’t sell very well in his lifetime, but eventually, the Devil will get his due.
A Symposium January 29, 5:30 pm