- David Belasco and Henry C. DeMille's four-act romantic drama opened on 1 November 1887 at the Lyceum Theatre, produced by Daniel Frohman. It ran for 239 performances, an impressive start for the long dramatic partnership of Belasco and DeMille. The play's simple plot involves Helen Truman, who rejects Robert Gray when she finds out he has jilted another girl. Then Helen rushes into marriage with John Rutherford, who is devastated to learn that she has accepted him on the rebound. John decides to work at the relationship. Helen eventually falls in love with him. Critics applauded the play's mix of drama and humor, as well as Georgia Cay-van, Henry Miller, and Mrs. Thomas Whiffen in principal roles, but noted its debt to Bronson Howard's The Banker's Daughter. The Wife played a successful return engagement in 1889.
The Historical Dictionary of the American Theater. James Fisher.
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