Photos: Get a 1st Look at Alley Theatre World Premiere of Thornton Wilder's Emporium | Playbill

Production Photos Photos: Get a 1st Look at Alley Theatre World Premiere of Thornton Wilder's Emporium

Rob Melrose directs the unfinished work that was completed by Kirk Lynn.

David Rainey and cast of The Emporium Lynn Lane

Houston's Alley Theatre world premiere of Thornton Wilder’s The Emporium will begin performances May 10 and continue through June 2 in the Neuhaus Theatre.

Directed by Rob Melrose and featuring a script completed by Kirk Lynn, the cast will include Elizabeth Bunch as Miss Coley, Shawn Hamilton as Mr. Benjamin, David Rainey as Mr. Foster, Christopher Salazar as John, Shawn Sides as Mrs. Frisbee, Raven Justine Troup as Laurencia, and Sally Wingert as Bernice. All actors are reprising their roles from the 2022 Alley All New Festival workshop.

Wilder, known for his Pulitzer Prize-winning plays Our Town and The Skin of Our Teeth, spent two decades writing a third play called The Emporium that was never completed—until now. The play has nine scenes, and Wilder wrote multiple versions of each. The Wilder estate permitted Lynn to create a "finished" version of the script only after he studied Wilder’s papers at the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Yale University.

Lynn says in a statement, “In 2018, I decided to read everything by Thornton Wilder. I finished his plays and novels and was working my way through his journals when I came across two scenes from an unfinished play: The Emporium. The journals described years and years of work, so I knew more scenes existed somewhere. At Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Yale, there were more than 300 pages of his unfinished script in Wilder’s papers. Working on The Emporium gifted me access to Wilder’s methods and his spirit.”

The Emporium follows the journey of a young man from an orphanage who is adopted by a farmer but runs away to the big city only to discover all this is only a metaphor.

The creative team also includes scenic designer Michael Locher, costume designer Raquel Barreto, lighting designer Cat Tate Starmer, and sound designer Yezminne Zepeda.

The stage manager is Jocelyn A. Tompson, and the assistant stage manager is Brandon Clark.

Get a first look at the world premiere in the exclusive photos below. Visit for more information.

Photos: Thornton Wilder’s The Emporium at The Alley Theatre

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