Sag Harbor to Celebrate the Launch of Steinbeck House

John Steinbeck, Sag Harbor, Joyous Gard
Joyous Gard on John Steinbeck’s Sag Harbor property is where he wrote his last two novels.
Gavin Zeigler for Sotheby’s International Realty

On Saturday, Sept. 9, join the Sag Harbor Partnership and Steinbeck House Local Advisory Committee to celebrate the official launch of the Steinbeck House.

The evening entitled, “The Fall of Our Contentment,” will feature a staged reading the Steinbeck classic The Winter of Our Discontent to raise money and laude the public acquisition of the Nobel and Pulitzer Prize-winning author John Steinbeck’s Sag Harbor home, where he wrote the novel.

The Sag Harbor Partnership, in partnership with the Town of Southampton, purchased the author’s residence for $13.5 million this April.

The partnership established a writer’s residency program and it is available to the public through reservations.

Steinbeck purchased the house with his wife Elaine in 1953. Though Steinbeck died in 1968, Elaine lived there until her death in 2003. Their home remains lined with bookcases. An octagonal glass gazebo, overlooking the water served as his writing studio.

Sag Harbor, Steinbeck
Steinbeck cooking out on a grill in Sag Harbor around 1955.MARTHA HEASLEY COX CENTER FOR STEINBECK STUDIES

The Winter of Our Discontent, published in 1961, was Steinbeck’s last novel and was the only one to solely take place on the East Coast, in a community, much like Sag Harbor.

Writer and producer Marc Abraham has crafted an adaptation of the story and is priming it for a theatrical run. Director, actor and playwright Tim Blake Nelson will direct the reading with multiple local artists taking part, such as James Badge Dale in the prominent role of Ethan Hawley.

A reception will occur at 6 p.m., followed by the reading at 7 p.m. on the ground level of The Church at 48 Madison Street. Tickets are $125 and may be purchased online.

A private dinner with acting company members will follow the reading. The dinner will take place at one of Sag Harbor’s oldest and most charming private homes. The dinner will feature delicious food by Sybille van Kempen of Loaves and Fishes and wines by Wölffer, including Roman Roth’s The Grapes of Roth. Tickets are $1,250 each and may also be purchased online.

Proceeds of the event will directly benefit the Sag Harbor Partnership and the Steinbeck House. The mother-daughter team of producer Carol Ostrow, a member of the board of the Sag Harbor Partnership, and editor Emily Graff, a member of the Steinbeck House Local Advisory Committee, will chair the event.

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