David Fenimore

Twentieth-Century Nevada Drama

Like other aspects of Nevada's social and cultural life, professional theater suffered from the decline in the state's economy that spanned the turn of the twentieth century. By the 1930s, the economy had begun to recover somewhat, due in part to legalized gambling, the end of Prohibition, and Reno's emergence as a destination for Americans seeking speedy divorces.

Nineteenth-Century Nevada Drama

In Nevada's nineteenth-century towns and mining camps, the demand for entertainment was almost entirely filled by traveling theatrical troupes. Thinly settled and distant from major population centers, the state took well over a century to develop the sort of sophisticated stage culture necessary to incubate its own professional playwrights and theater companies. During this period, few theatrical backers would risk a production by any American playwright, let alone an unknown local one, when audiences were likely to prefer a more fashionable foreign play.

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