The Time of Your Life (1939)

B418Original Broadway Production - The Booth Theatre from October 25th, 1939 to January 29th, 1940,  185 performances. Transferred to the Guild Theatre for a run through April 6th, 1940.

Producer - The Theatre Guild and Eddie Dowling

Director- Eddie Dowling & William Saroyan

Music - Reginald Beane

Dances - Gene Kelly

Set design - Watson Barratt




Original Cast

TheTimeOfYourLife003Joe - Eddie Dowling

Kitty Duvall - Julie Haydon

Harry - Gene Kelly

Newsboy - Ross Bagdasarian

Mary L. - Celeste Holm

Tom - Edward Andrews

Wesley - Reginald Beane

Elsie - Cathie Bailey

Krupp - William Bendix

Blick - Grover Burgess

TheTimeOfYourLife001Killer's Sidekick - Mary Chaffey

Nick - Charles De Sheim

Nick's Ma - Michelette Burani

Kit Carson - Leonard Doyle

Killer - Evelyn Geller

Willy - Will Lee

McCarthy - Tom Tully

Lorene - Nene Vibber

Society Gentleman - Ainsworth Arnold

Another Cop Drunkard - John Farrell

B418Society Lady - Eva Leonard-Boyne

Arab - Houseley Stevens

A Cop - Randolph Wade



The Time of Your Life won Saroyan both the New York Drama Critics' Circle Best Play (1939) and the Pulitzer Prize for Drama (1940)

The original production featured several future members of the American Theatre Hall of Fame, including Eddie Dowling, Celeste Holm, Gene Kelly, and William Saroyan. 

The setting for the show is Nick's, a bar based on Izzy Gomez's in San Francisco. 


Made into a film in 1947, directed by H.C. Potter, produced by William Cagney, and starring James Cagney, his sister Jeanne Cagney as Kitty, and William Bendix as Nick. 

New York revivals took place in 1940 (September 23 to October 19th) at the Guild Theatre, 1969 (November 6th to December 20th) at the Vivian Beaumont Theater, and 1975 by The Acting Company (October 28th to November 1st) at the Harkness Theater. 

The Theatre Guild on the Air produced The Time of Your Life in 1947, with Dane Clark, Mary Anderson, and John Lund in 1947.

Playhouse 90 featured The Time of Your Life on October 9, 1958. Jackie Gleason played Joe, and the production featured future television legends Dick York, Jack Klugman, and Gloria Vanderbilt.

Broadway legend Patti LaPone made her television debut in Theatre in America's production of The Time of Your Life, alongside Kevin Kline. 

TheTimeOfYourLife009The Time of Your Life was recorded at the Brussels World's Fair in 1958 with Francot Tone as Joe. The play was broadcast in the UK on Armchair Theatre on October 19, 1958

 The Marines' Memorial Theater Group produced the first version of The Time of Your Life to be presented in San Francisco in August, 1948. Saroyan, then living in San Francisco, was invited, but did not attend. 


Associated Materials

Playbill: The Time of Your Life, 1941, Erlanger Theatre, Theatre Guild production, TP-4

Playbill: The Time of Your Life, 1941, Curran Theatre, touring Theatre Guild production, TP-6

 Flier: The Chimera Theatre 1970 season, 1970, advertisement for Chimera Theatre's 1970 season, including The Time of Your Life, TP-12

Promotional brochure: The Time of Your Life, 1941, promotional poster for The Theatre Guild progduction at the Booth theatre, TP-13

 Playbill: The Time of Your Life, 1971, The Saint James Armenian Church Cultural Committee production in Watertown, Mass., TP-19

Playbill: The Time of Your Life, 1972, playbill for the performances starring Henry Fonda at the Huntington Hartford Theatre, TP-20

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