Stemming from an actual incident in Geneva in 1983 when a Soviet and an American diplomat took “a walk in the woods” together during arms control talks, Lee Blessing’s provocative two-character drama was a finalist for the 1987 Pulitzer Prize.
Set during the end of the Cold War, A Walk In The Woods tells the tale of a series of meetings between two diplomat-negotiators, American and Russian. The two characters have clearly different agendas. The veteran Russian tries to forge a human connection, since he expects very little will get accomplished in the way of substantive political change. The younger American believes they should buckle down and do some real negotiating. The plot thickens as it becomes clear that the American and Russian governments that the diplomats represent are making decisions and taking actions that are in complete opposition to the Ambassadors’ efforts.
The play raises deep questions, “What can we do to heal the world?” “What is the value of human connection?” “How can we best bridge fundamental differences?” Blessing’s story has chilling resonance in today’s political climate.