SCENE 1 The play opens on the fire escape of the Wingfield’s modest apartment in St. Louis, which faces an alley. Tom Wingfield, dressed as merchant sailor, step onto the fire escape and speaks directly to the audience, laying out both the historical and social context of his world, as well as the family unit itself. This is Tom in the future, introducing the audience to his memory play. Tom, entering the memory, steps into the Wingfield apartment, where he joins his mother, Amanda, and his sister, Laura, at the dinner table. Amanda is holding court, ordering Tom to chew his food, instructing Laura to stay seated so she doesn’t tire herself for any “gentleman callers,” and telling well-worn stories about her many suitors when she was a young, beautiful Southern belle. Laura explains that she has less gentleman callers than her mother had, and Amanda fears she will become an old maid.
SCENE 2 Laura is polishing her beloved collection of glass figurines when Amanda enters the
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