Lemon Sky was first produced in 1970. Lanford Wilson had first developed it with Michael Douglas at the Eugene O'Neill Theater Center's National Playwright Conference in 1968. The play would be presented in a stage reading. It was well received by the critical standards.
The cast for the first presentation at the Buffalo Studio Arena Theater on March 26, 1970 was Christopher Walken, Charles Durning, Bonnie Bartlett, Kathryn Baumann, Lee McCain, Shawn McGill and Frank Martinez III. It would subsequently go on to be produced at the Playhouse Theatre in New York City on May 17,1970.