[Marsha Hunt, Hollywood and Broadway actress.] Autograph Letter Signed ('Marsha Hunt') to the English playwright Christopher Fry, describing her admiration for, and association with, his work, with reference to Richard Burton and Vincent Price.

Marsha Hunt [Marcia Virginia Hunt] (born 1917), Hollywood and Broadway actress [Christopher Fry (1907-2005), playwright]
Publication details: 
On her letterhead, Sherman Oaks, California. 28 February 2005.
SKU: 22067

3pp, 4to. In good condition, lightly aged. A long and entertaining letter, beginning: 'Dear Mr. Fry, | Probably late in 1949, in a New York City duplex living room, two married couples lay prone on the floor, fanned out around a single copy of “The Lady's Not for Burning”, the better to read aloud all its colorful roles. The couples were Alfred Drake (with whom I had played the previous season in my first Broadway play), his wife, my writer husband [i.e. Robert Presnell Jr] and I. Alfred had just come across “The Lady” and had to share his discovery with us.' The reading gave her 'a lifetime favorite play'. She describes how she had to 'miss playing in “A Phoenix too Frequent,” being hard at work then in G. B. Shaw's “The Devil's Disciple” at the Royale Theatre'. The 'floor-reading foursome' attended a performance of 'The Lady' by the British cast at the same theatre, 'and were spellbound. I especially recall the mellow beauty of Pamela Brown's voice, and noting well the actor playing Richard, the copying clerk, also a Richard, last name Burton.' She describes a production she was in with Vincent Price, 'first at Southern California's La Jolla Playhouse, then at San Francisco's Alcazar Theatre': 'Audiences trooped backstage to thank us for the feast of language they had enjoyed – a rare attention to text. Loving the play we all longed to take it on tour, but previous commitments forbade, and so the magic spell we'd been under was broken. But Vinnie Price and I did have one more go at it a few years later when his hometown, St. Louis, Missouri showed that middle-America could relish Christopher Fry just as much as did our east and west coasts.' She contrasts how Fry's words 'fly upward like the sparkling drops of an exuberant fountain' with how T. S. Eliot's speeches, 'in the simplest, barest of words, could leave the listener baffled as to what it was he was saying. I even had trouble learning those lines.' She ends by explaining that 'That very nice fellow-actor Ted Donaldson encouraged me to tell you what joy your writing has brought me – and so many others, in these distant outposts. Your unique gifts have enriched all who have come across them. Thank you, oh thank you for sharing them with us.'