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Written by Robert Lowell

Directed by David Wheeler

Performed by the Theatre Company of Boston

From the program:

AN HISTORICAL INCIDENT, first reported in Delano's Voyages and Travels, published in Boston in 1817, caught the imagination of Herman Melville some 40 years later. Melville, whose now famous novel, Moby Dick, had been a critical failure when it was first published in 1851, had turned to the writing of short stories. He used Delano's account as the basis of a short story which was published by Putnam's Magazine under the title of Benito Cereno.

MELVILLE'S STORY stirred brief interest, but then it sank into obscurity for more than one hundred years, when the famous contemporary American poet, Robert Lowell, recognized its significance.

BENITO CERENO, through the magic of Lowell's pen and the inspired interpretation of the Theatre Company of Boston, has been acclaimed a cultural and poetic masterpiece by critic Robert Brunstein. Of particular significance is the portrayal of Babu, the black slave, a character central to the dramatic conflict of the play.

Publication Date



Portland, ME


Theatre, University of Southern Maine Department of Theatre, Theatre Program


Arts and Humanities | Theatre and Performance Studies | Theatre History



Captain Amasa Delano ... Larry Bryggman
John Perkins ... Arthur Merrow
Babu ... James Spruill
Don Benito Cereno ... William
Young Ataful ... Gilbert Lewis
Francisco ... Gustave Johnson

Location: Box 66, Folder 7

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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Benito Cereno



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