The Crucible Timeline


  • Spring: Arthur Miller visits Salem, Mass., and finishes his script for The Crucible soon after. Meanwhile, Miller’s friends and colleagues are called for testimony before the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC). Among them is Elia Kazan, Miller’s longtime collaborator. Kazan supplies names of communists to the Committee.


  • January 22: World premiere of The Crucible at the Martin Beck Theatre, NYC. It opens to a lukewarm reception from critics and audiences alike, but receives the Tony Award for Best Play.


  • Miller is denied a passport by the State Department when he attempts to attend the Brussels opening of The Crucible.


  • January 23: First Chicago production of The Crucible at the Goodman Theatre


  • June 21: Arthur Miller is called before HUAC and refuses to name names.


  • April 26: A film version of The Crucible is released in France with the title Les Sorcieres de Salem, subsequently released in the United States on December 8, 1958 as The Crucible. It stars Yves Montand, with a screenplay by Jean-Paul Sartre.


  • The Crucible is revived Off Broadway with a cast of amateur actors and receives high praise. This production runs for more than 600 performances and establishes The Crucible as an important piece of American theater.


  • The Crucible makes its way to television, starring George C. Scott and Collen Dewhurst. Both actors are nominated for an Emmy Award.


  • The Crucible is made into a major motion film directed by Nicholas Hytner and starring Daniel Day-Lewis, Joan Allen and Winona Ryder. Miller writes the screenplay and is nominated for an Academy Award.


  • A revival premieres at The Virginia Theater in New York, starring Liam Neeson and Laura Linney. It is nominated for the Tony Award for Best Revival.
  • Chicago’s Timeline Theatre Company revives the play to much acclaim, directed by Nick Bowling.


  • September: The Crucible opens at Steppenwolf Theatre Company in Chicago.


  • Miller, Arthur. Timebends: A Life. Penguin 1995.
  • Concise Dictionary of American Literary Biography: The New Consciousness, 1941-1968. Gale Research, 1987.
  • Disch, Thomas M. The Nation. May 1990.

Content last updated: October 31, 2007

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