Fanny's First Play, which features a play within a play, is a satire of theater critics, whose characters were based upon Shaw's own detractors. Originally, Shaw had the play produced anonymously in 1911 and it caused a sensation. Ironically, the play was Shaw's first real commercial success. The plot involves the daughter (Emily Skeggs) of a man (Reed Birney) who refuses to live in the present. She writes an incendiary play, anonymously, and invites a group of critics to review it.