Happy Birthday, J.R.R. Tolkien. Your amazing books have touched so many lives. If you were still with us today, I hope you would be pleased to see all of the artwork, literature, plays, and movies your work has inspired. This year, Peter Jackson's film The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, has made us fall in love with your 1937 novel. Yet, this is not the first dramatic receation of your tale of wizards and dragons.
For those of you who felt that Jackson's movie was much too long, you might prefer Edward Mast's stage adaptation of this classic fantasy story. The condensed script abandons many entertaining plot points and characters, leaving a very streamlined adventure that doesn't feel very epic. However, if the audience is a stranger to this Lord of the Rings prequel or if the cast is comprised of young performers, The Hobbit is a decent first step into Tolkien's world.