Wednesday, 13 September 2017 08:51
BATON ROUGE—(September 13, 2017)—To celebrate its 70th year, the Louisiana Book Festival has chosen Tennessee Williams’s iconic Pulitzer Prize winning play, A Streetcar Named Desire, as its official 2017 One Book, One Festival selection.  The play, which opened on December 3rd, 1947, at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre on Broadway, is considered to be one of Williams’s greatest and has been in near continuous production over the past 70 years, enjoyed numerous revivals, and has been adapted to film, television, opera, and even ballet. 
“There is no better way to celebrate Louisiana and the upcoming tricentennial of New Orleans than with A Streetcar Named Desire,” said Lt. Governor Billy Nungesser. “New Orleans and its culture is reflected in this wonderful play.” 
Inaugurated in 2008, the One Book, One Festival program invites attendees to read the same title in advance and later join the scholar-led discussion with others during the festival on Saturday, October 28th. This year’s discussion will be led by perennial festival favorite Gary Richards, associate professor and chair of the Department of English, Linguistics & Communication at the University of Mary Washington and scholar of southern literature. He is the author of Lovers and Other Beloveds: Sexual Otherness in Southern Fiction, 1936-1961 as well as numerous essays on southern fiction and drama.
This year’s festival will also include a program featuring WYES’s Peggy Scott Laborde, host of Steppin’ Out, in conversation with WWL-TV news anchor, Eric Paulsen. Eric, an award-winning journalist who has spent the last thirty years on WWL’s highly-rated morning and noon news programs, has the honor and distinction of having conducted the last broadcast interview with literary legend Tennessee Williams, an interview held on the second floor of what was then "Marti's" restaurant on the corner of Rampart Street in New Orleans. The program at the 2017 Louisiana Book Festival will include a screening of excerpts from that last interview. 
A nationally recognized literary event, the Louisiana Book Festival is free, open to the public, and takes place annually in the heart of Baton Rouge in the Louisiana State Capitol, State Library of Louisiana, Capitol Park Museum, and tents on neighboring streets. The 2017 Louisiana Book Festival, held on Saturday, October 28th, will feature more than 250 authors and panelists discussing their books and more than 100 programs, including the Young Readers Pavilion, where children and parents can enjoy storytelling and performances; Teen HQ, featuring bestselling and award winning young adult authors; live musical performances; cooking demos; and a wide variety of book-related activities and exhibitors. For more information, please visit www.louisianabookfestival.org


Rebecca Hamilton
State Library of Louisiana
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Buddy Boe/Jessica Ragusa
Office of the Lieutenant Governor
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