[Augustus John, OM RA, celebrated Welsh painter.] Producer Hugh Burnett’s copy of the typed transcript of John’s BBC TV interview with John Freeman in the series ‘Face to Face’, with proof and typographical marks for publication.

Augustus John [Augustus Edwin John] (1878-1961), OM RA, celebrated Welsh painter [John Freeman (1915-2014), Labour MP and interviewer on 'Face to Face'; Hugh Burnett (1924-2011), BBC TV producer]
Publication details: 
Without date or place, but BBC TV interview on 15 May 1960; and this transcript produced for inclusion in version published in London in 1964.
SKU: 23780

The present item is the producer Hugh Burnett's own copy, from his papers, of the transcript of John Freeman's interview with John, broadcast in the groundbreaking BBC series 'Face to Face' on 15 May 1960. This single-spaced typed transcript was produced for inclusion in Burnett's book 'Face to Face / Edited and introduced by Hugh Burnett' (London: Jonathan Cape, 1964), and is marked up with printing instructions in pencil and red ink, with a few proof corrections in green ink. 3pp, foolscap 8vo, on three leaves stapled together. In fair condition, lightly aged, with a few pin holes at top right of the leaves. An energetic, zesty interview. ‘I’m a Welshman’, John declares, ‘a bad Welshman’. A passage regarding John’s childhood conveys the general tone: ‘I can remember one thing in an early school in Tenby. I’d practically idolized one of the masters, as schoolboys are apt to do, I think, and he betrayed me and held me up before the whole school, denounced me as a liar, d’you see, and the fact was I was completely innocent. I made a mistake, I know, a formal matter, but instead of protesting I succumbed before the class. I never forgave that man and I’m very glad to be able to report that soon after he blew his brains out, you see - in a railway train. I think I must have put something on him.’ Further on he describes his affinity with gypsies: ‘I was told to avoid them, by my nurses. I was always fascinated by them as a child, seeing them in the markets at Haverfordwest, strange foreign people. And then when I got to Liverpool I fell in with a great friend we made, John Samson, who was a student of Romany, and we went about a lot together. There I learnt the fine dialect spoken by one tribe in the north.’ There are two interesting deletions. First, John’s identification of the hospital at which his first wife died in France as being in the ‘Boulevard Arago’ has been scored through in black ink. Second, the passage ‘Oh you got it from there? I thought I’d disguised it sufficiently.’ has been typed through with crosses before the passage ‘Certainly I’m interested in women. In beauty, I should think. If it’s beauty, it’s love. In my case! You’ve got to get excited before you can do anything, and beauty is a great excitant.’