Revolutionary Road Short Essay - Answer Key

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1. How does the story begin?

The Laurel Players stage their first production before an eager, expectant audience in suburban Connecticut in 1955. Somewhat tenuously, the New York director hired to work with the amateur actors gives them a pep talk the night before the opening, telling them they've got what it takes to put across a stunning performance.

2. How does the play proceed?

A series of forgotten lines, backstage noises, onstage bumbling, and just bad acting doom the performance. The quality of the play is further depleted by the fact that the leading man is sick and unable to act, so the director fills in because he knows the lines but does not fit the part physically at all.

3. How do the audience members and actors feel at intermission?

During intermission, the members of the audience wander awkwardly around the high school building, disgruntled but unable to speak about the bad performance. The cast members pace about backstage nervously wishing only to finish the second act and go home as fast as possible.

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