August Snow

Reynolds Price

Directed by Rodney Higginbotham 

The first in a poetic trilogy, New Music, which chronicles the Avery family and their friends through 37 years in a North Carolina town.  Elegant melancholy follows these people as they live through the depression, WWII and Vietnam, and a few private wars of their own. "When an author as powerful as Reynolds Price begins to write plays, the theater world must stand up and take notice ... Price ranks as one of the great writers of our generation."  Anthony Chase.

In August of 1937, in a small town in eastern North Carolina, we meet the Avery family.  Roma Avery is the widowed matriarch who still maintains a hold on her recently married son, Neal.  He and his wife, Taw, a former school teacher, rent a room from their friend Genevieve Slappy, while Porter Farwell, Neal's boyhood friend, now lives in Roma's house, Both Neal and Porter work at the family store, Avery's Clothing.  After the first year of marriage, which has seen them drift apart, Taw gives Neal an ultimatum.  He must recommit with heart and soul to his marriage vows by ending the long nights he spends out drinking with Porter.  He has until supper to abide by her wishes or she will leave him.  Neal begins to see life as a grown up, complete with the disappointments he's tried to avoid, and ultimately knows that Taw is the best thing to happen to him.  He returns, quietly renewing his love.
(Dramatists Play Service, Inc. Catalog)

Taw Avery (Jeanette Rocuant)  listens to a wild tale about her husband as told by Genevieve Slappy   (Gail Garcia)  in a scene from August Snow.

About The Author

Reynolds Price was born in Macon, North Carolina in 1933.  He was reared and educated in his native state, taking his A.B. from Duke University.  In 1955 he traveled to Merton College, Oxford where he studied for three years as a Rhodes Scholar.  He then returned to Duke and began the teaching which he continues as James B. Duke Professor of English.

In 1962 his first novel A Long and Happy Life appeared.  It received the William Faulkner Award and has never been out of print.  In ensuing years he has published seven more novels, most recently The Tongues of angels.  In 1986 his Kate Vaiden received the National Book Critics Circle Award.  He has also published volumes of short stories, poems, plays, essays, translations from the Bible and a memoir, Clear Pictures.

He wrote his first play The Wise Men at age thirteen.  In 1978 Early Dark was produced at the WPA Theatre in New York.  His television play Private Contentment was commissioned by American Playhouse for its first season in 1982, and in 1989 his trilogy  New Music premiered at the Cleveland Play House.  Full Moon, commissioned and performed by Duke Drama, had its first professional production at New Stage, Jackson, Mississippi in 1990.

He is a member of the National Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters.  His books have appeared in sixteen languages.

Quotation from:
New Music: A Trilogy by Reynolds Price
published by Theatre Communications Group


Porter Farwell, left (Michael Buino)   explains to Roma Avery, center (Lori Laboy)   how he and her son Neal, right (Les Davis) went boating after drinking too much corn liquor in a scene from August Snow by Reynolds Price.

Neal Avery (Les Davis) charms his young wife, Taw (Jeanette Rocuant) as his childhood pal, Porter (Michael Buino) looks on in the background in Reynolds Price's August Snow.

Neal Avery (Les Davis) listens to his young wife, Taw (Jeanette Rocuant) explain her feeling about their relationship.


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