“Steinbeck on Stage: The Grapes of Wrath at 75” was presented by the National Steinbeck Center in collaboration with the Smithsonian Associates at the Ring Auditorium at the Hirshhorn Museum in Washington D.C. last Thursday (4/27) .  As part of the anniversary celebration, Penguin Classics Editorial Director Elda Rotor moderated a panel discussion that included Frank Galati of Chicago’s Steppenwolf Theatre, who created the Tony Award-winning stage version of The Grapes of Wrath, actress Lois Smith, who played Ma Joad in the Steppenwolf production, Michael Donald Edwards, artistic director of Florida’s Asolo Repertory Theatre, and Penguin author/National Steinbeck Center scholar-in-residence Susan Shillinglaw. Pictured in the photo above are (left to right) Colleen Bailey (National Steinbeck Center Executive Director), Susan Shillinglaw (Penguin author/ Prof. of English at San Jose State University and Scholar-in-Residence at the National Steinbeck Center), Michael Donald Edwards (Artistic Director of Asolo Repertory Theatre), Octavio Solis (playwright), Lois Smith (actress from The Grapes of Wrath Steppenwolf and Broadway productions and Elia Kazan’s East of Eden film adaptation), Frank Galati (Tony-award winning director and writer for The Grapes of Wrath on Broadway), Patricia Wakida (writer and print artist), Andrew Sellon (Asolo Theatre cast), Elda Rotor (Penguin Classics Editorial Director), P.J. Palmer (filmmaker), and Peggy Roeder (Asolo Theatre cast). tumblr_inline_n4wu6v1UpA1rip57tSusan Shillinglaw also recently met with actor James Franco, who is currently starring in the Broadway production of Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men. He is shown here holding copies of Penguin’s The Grapes of Wrath and other Penguin Classics.  Shillinglaw commented that Franco is “a fellow book lover.”