The How and the Why

The How and the Why

By Sarah Treem

Directed by Emily Mann

Originally produced at McCarter Theatre Center, Princeton, NJ 

January 7, 2011 through February 13, 2011

About the Premiere Production:
Evolution and emotion collide in Sarah Treem’s thought-provoking and sharp new play about science, family, and survival of the fittest. On the eve of a prestigious conference, an up-and-coming evolutionary biologist wrestles for the truth with an established leader in the field. This intimate and keenly perceptive play explores the difficult choices women of every generation face.

Artistic Statement: 
As both a language play and a play of ideas, The How and the Why embodies McCarter’s commitment to creating work that engages in the questions of our time and to producing stories that resonate across generational and, in this case, gender divides. We are particularly excited by Sarah Treem’s prodigious talents, as she has already exhibited a command of her craft that is far beyond her years. - From Mara Isaacs, Producing Director:

What this grant has allowed us to do:
We’re grateful to The Edgerton Foundation for providing us with this much needed extra week of rehearsal. The additional time will provide the freedom to explore and develop both the character relationships and the scientific accuracy upon which the play hinges. From Mara Isaacs, Producing Director

Director: Emily Mann

Set Design: Daniel Ostling

Lighting Design: Stephen Strawbridge

Costume Design: Jennifer Moeller


McCarter Theatre receives Edgerton Foundation New American Play Award

Bucks Local News, January 25, 2011

'The How and the Why' review: Princeton play premiere proves to be all-inclusive success, January 18, 2011

'The How and the Why' at the McCarter Theatre Center, January 15, 2011

McCarter Theatre World Premiere . The How and The Why . January 7 to February 13 . 2011 . Princeton

New Jersey Events, January 5, 2011

Mercedes Ruehl to Star in McCarter Theatre's The How and The Why

Theater Mania, December 9, 2010

Mercedes Ruehl to star in McCarter Theatre's THE HOW AND THE WHY 1/7

Broadway World, December 9, 2010

Subsequent Productions:

Aurora Theatre Company in Berkeley, CA March 18, 2016 - April 24, 2016

Theater J in Washington, DC February 15, 2017 - March 12, 2017

TimeLine Theatre Company in Chicago, IL January 28, 2014 - April 6, 2014

Central Square Theater in Cambridge, MA September 27, 2012 - October 21, 2012 (Co-production with The Nora Theatre Company)

CoHo Productions in Portland, OR October 19, 2016 - November 19, 2016

InterAct Theatre Company in Philadelphia, PA October 21, 2011 - November 13, 2011

Trinity Repertory Co in Providence, RI November 29, 2012 - December 30, 2012