When author C.S. Lewis wasn't chatting it up with ring-bearer and fellow wordsmith J.R.R. Tolkien or drafting conversations between talking animals, he was preaching the importance of a moral life from Satan's point of view. Thus, the 31 Screwtape Letters were born.
Opposite of a faithful society, demons worship Satan ("Our Father Below") and denounce the Christian God as "the Enemy." In an effort to promote sin and debauchery on Earth, an administrator of the Lowerarchy of Hell—Senior Demon Screwtape—mentors a troublemaker-in-training in the art of damnation.
The inexperienced junior tempter, Wormwood, is charged with the task of leading an ordinary man down the path of corruption by way of deceitful and wicked means. The titular correspondence between Screwtape and Wormwood undermines conventional faith, but emphasizes the resilience of human decency.
The Letters, first published in 1942, have been adapted for the stage and the production will take over the Morrison Center for two shows only Saturday, July 20, at 4 p.m. and 8 p.m.
The production finally makes its way to the City of Trees just in time to honor the 50th anniversary of the C.S. Lewis legacy, whose work includes the allegorical revision The Pilgrim's Regress and fantasy-adventure series The Chronicles of Narnia.
Since their publication, Lewis' Screwtape Letters have been expanded with a sequel, comic book, radio show and the stage adaptation. After a smash nine-month, off-Broadway run at New York City's Westside Theater, Boise audiences will finally know what Satan's minions have to say for themselves.