THEATRICAL

[William Farren, leading Georgian actor.] Joint (William & John) Autograph Letters Signed (both 'W. Farren') to George Smith of Yarmouth Theatre & his brother John, encouraging John to work on a play for J. R. Planché at the Olympic Theatre, London.

Author: 
William Farren (1786-1861), leading Georgian actor [James Robinson Planché (1796-1880), dramatist, antiquary and Somerset Herald; Olympic Theatre, London; George and John Smith of Yarmouth]
Publication details: 
30 Brompton Square [London]. 3 September [1838].
£120.00

Farren's entry in the Oxford DNB concludes by describing him as 'a theatrical sophisticate, equally at home in period comedy and modern plays; he was, besides, one of the finest actors of his century'. From around 1821 Farren lived with the actress Mrs Faucit (Harriet Elizabeth Savill, née Diddear, 1789-1857), with whom he had two sons. An excellent item, casting vivid light on the Olympic Theatre of Madame Vestris and J. R. Planché in its late-Georgian heyday.

[William Gorman Wills, Irish dramatist, novelist and painter.] Autograph Letter Signed ('W G Wills -') to 'My dear Stoker', i.e. Bram Stoker, author of 'Dracula', as business manager of the Lyceum Theatre, asking for a box for his cousin.

Author: 
W. G. Wills [William Gorman Wills] (1828-1891), Irish dramatist, novelist and painter [Bram Stoker (1847-1912), author of 'Dracula']
Publication details: 
Ailsa Villa, St Margaret's, Twickenham. No date[1870s or 1880s].
£65.00

1p, 12mo. In fair condition, lightly aged and worn. Folded twice. Wills worked mainly with Sir Henry Irving's Lyceum Theatre, at which Stoker was for more than twenty years business manager (and later Irving's biographer): hence a nice association, between two notable Anglo-Irishmen. Reads: 'My dear Stoker | Will you kindly give a box to my Cousin – the Honble. Mrs Greene & party and greatly oblige – Yours very faithfully | W G Wills –'. James Joyce alludes to Wills and his play 'A Royal Divorce' frequently in Finnegans Wake.

[Thomas Anstey Guthrie ['F. Anstey'], Punch humorist and novelist.] Autograph Letter Signed 'Anstey Guthrie' to the actor-manager Arthur Chudleigh, sending a present and commenting on the success of 'Pinero's brilliant play'.

Author: 
Thomas Anstey Guthrie ['F. Anstey'] (1856-1934), Punch humorist, novelist and journalist, author of 'Vice Versa' and 'The Tinted Venus' ['Arthur Chudleigh' [Arthur Lillies], actor-manager]
Publication details: 
On letterhead of 16 Duke Street Mansions, Grosvenor Square, W [London]. 18 February 1911.
£45.00

1p, 12mo. Letterhead in green. In good condition, lightly aged, with minor traces of glue from mount adhering to blank reverse. Addressed to 'My dear Chudleigh'. He asks him to accept 'the accompanying volume', which he ordered to be bound for him 'weeks ago but it has only turned up this morning'. He is 'delighted to know that Pinero's brilliant play seems to he having the great success it deserves'.

[Charles Kean and his wife Ellen Tree prepare to return from America.] Autograph Letter Signed ('Rt. Clarke.') from Robert Clarke to Benjamin Webster, asking on Kean's behalf for 'information respecting Theatres in England', discussing Kean and wife.

Author: 
Robert Clarke, actor-manager, Theatre Royal, Liverpool [Charles Kean (1811-1868), actor-manager, son of Edmund Kean, husband of Ellen Tree (1805-1880); Benjamin Webster (1797-1882), actor, dramatist]
Publication details: 
2 Bladud Buildings, Bath. 27 December 1846.
£80.00

2pp, 12mo. Bifolium, endorsed 'Clarke' on reverse of second leaf. In fair condition, lightly aged and worn. Folded three times. The letter begins: 'My dear Webster, | Charles Kean has requested me to give him information respecting Theatres in England, in which it is probable he may form engagements on his return from America, as he wishes his plans to be arranged if possible previous to his departure from the United States, so as he may see his way clearly on his arrival in England.' He asks whether it would answer Webster's purpose 'to make any proposal to him'.

[John Van Druten, dramatist.] Typed Letter Signed ('John van Druten') to W. J. Macqueen-Pope, discussing his memories of Ivor Novello, and his new play 'I am a Camera', based on Christopher Isherwood, and Julie Harris.

Author: 
John Van Druten [John William Van Druten] (1901-1957), English playwright and theatre director [Walter James Macqueen-Pope (1888-1960),; Ivor Novello; Christopher Isherwood; Julie Harris]
Publication details: 
On letterhead of the A. J. C. Ranch, Thermal, California. 15 January 1952.
£150.00

2pp, 8vo. In fair condition, lightly aged and worn. A very good and informative letter. Written from the A. J. C. Ranch, which Van Druten had purchased with his former lover Carter Lodge (now his business manager) and the British actress Auriol Lee. Van Druten left his interest in the ranch to Lodge, together with the rights to his work, including the play discussed here, 'I am a Camera', an adapatation of Christopher Isherwood's stories. (For the relationship between Van Druten and Isherwood, see Peter Parker's biography of the latter.) This entitled Lodge to income from the film 'Cabaret'.

[Joyce Grenfell, comedian.] Autograph Letter Signed ('Joyce Grenfell') to 'Mr Chipp', gracefully explaining her reasons for having to refuse for a second time his 'kind invitation'.

Author: 
Joyce Grenfell [Joyce Irene Grenfell, née Phipps] (1910-1979), comedian, monologist, actress and singer
Publication details: 
On letterhead of Flat 8, 34 Elm Park Gardens, Chelsea, SW10 [London]. 27 May 1960.
£30.00

1p, 16mo. In fair condition, folded once, with two punch holes at margin, one affecting a word of text. She states that it is kind of him to ask her again, and she feels 'very churlish in having to say NO a second time', but her 'autumn-winter plans are complicated by a big concert tour & a lot of other [pro]bable dates', so she must reluctantly refuse his invitation.

[Joyce Grenfell, comedian.] Autograph Letter Signed ('Joyce Grenfell') to 'Mr Willmot', discussing her religious faith ('being a believer') and answering a question about a music hall recitation.

Author: 
Joyce Grenfell [Joyce Irene Grenfell, née Phipps] (1910-1979), comedian, monologist, actress and singer
Publication details: 
19 December 1968. No place.
£80.00

2pp, 12mo. In good condition, lightly aged. Folded once with two punch holes in margin, one affecting two words of text. A fascinating letter, in which Grenfell discusses her faith with great seriousness. She begins by stating that she is going to give the answers to the questions in his letter. Firstly she apologises for not knowing 'the recitation from which you quote.

[Joyce Grenfell, comedian.] Two Autograph Letters Signed ('Joyce Grenfell' and 'Joyce') to Sheridan Russell, one regarding the Bermondsey 'settlement' Time and Talent, the other from New York, on the city, her audiences and the reception of her show.

Author: 
Joyce Grenfell [Joyce Irene Grenfell, née Phipps] (1910-1979), comedian, monologist, actress and singer [Sheridan Russell (1900-1991), husband of social worker Kit Russell [Kit Stewart] (1909-1998)]
Publication details: 
ONE: 149 King's Road, S.W.3. [London] 9 April 1949. TWO: Laurelton Hotel, West 55th St., New York City. 29 November 1955.
£56.00

For information on Russell see the Oxford DNB entry on his wife from 1957, the social worker Kit Russell [Katherine Frances Russell, née Stewart] (1909-1998). Both letters are in fair condition, lightly aged and creased. ONE: Signed 'Joyce Grenfell'. 2pp, 12mo. She begins the letter with a question: 'Dear Sheridan Russell. | What is Time and Talents?

[Edward Laman Blanchard, playwright.] Autograph Letter Signed ('E. L. Blanchard') to 'C. Osborne', explaining his plans for the Era Almanack, while regretfully declining his offer of literary assistance.

Author: 
E. L. Blanchard [Edward Litt Laman Blanchard] (1820-1889), playwright and author, for 37 years writer of the Drury Lane pantomimes
Publication details: 
London Road, Rosherville, Kent. 27 August 1867.
£80.00

1p, 12mo. In good condition, lightly aged. Folded twice. 'My dear Sir | The Era Almanack will entirely consist of Theatrical information and general literature is not contemplated in the plan. Otherwise I need hardly say I should have been most happy to have availed myself of your aid.' The Era Almanack ran from 1868 to 1919, and was one of the more reliable theatrical annuals.

[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.

Author: 
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.
£220.00

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.

[Sir Tom Stoppard, playwright.] Autograph Signature ('Tom Stoppard') to a limited edition printed handbill of a passage about the merits of a cricket bat, from his play 'The Real Thing'.

Author: 
Tom Stoppard [Sir Tom Stoppard, born Tomas Straussler] (b.1937), Czech-born British playwright [the game of cricket]
Publication details: 
No place or date (but after 1982). At foot: 'Printed by permission of Faber & Faber Ltd' and 'Of an edition limited to 500 this is no. 401'.
£50.00

1p, 8vo. In fair condition, lightly aged, with creasing at edges. Signed at bottom right in red ink. Limited edition numeration added with a stamp. Beneath the heading 'The Real Thing' in block capitals, a characteristically-quirky eighteen-line quotation of a speech made by 'Henry', while 'holding his cricket bat', ending: 'This isn't better because someone says it's better, or because there's a conspiracy by the MCC to keep cudgels out of Lords. It's better because it's better.'

[Sir Arnold Wesker, playwright.] Two Typed Letters Signed (both 'Arnold Wesker') to Israeli author Aubrey Hodes, regarding his touring festival Centre 42, the English attitude to 'culture outside the commercial framework' and Israeli arts funding.

Author: 
Sir Arnold Wesker (1932-2016), playwright and author [Aubrey Hodes, Israeli author; Centre 42; New Wave; Kitchen Sink Drama; Angry Young Men; Jewish writers]
Publication details: 
20 Fitzroy Square, London, N1. 17 October 1962.
£220.00

Both 1p, 4to, and in good condition, lightly aged and folded once. Both letters addressed to Hodes at Beit Rosenberg, Keron Heyesod Street, Herzlia-on-Sea, Israel. The subject of the letters is Centre 42, the touring arts group Wesker formed to bring culture to the masses on his release from prison, following a sentence for civil disobedience with the Committee of 100 in opposition to nuclear weapons. The group moved to the Roundhouse in London in 1964.

[Sir Arnold Wesker, playwright.] Typed Letter Signed ('Arnold') to playwright Bernard Kops, appealing for copies of his plays to send to Cuba, which he has visited, finding that they have 'very bad theatre', due to 'their intolerable isolation'.

Author: 
Sir Arnold Wesker (1932-2016), playwright and author [Bernard Kops (b.1923), playwright; New Wave; Kitchen Sink Drama; Angry Young Men; Jewish writers]
Publication details: 
27 Bishop's Road, London, N6. 24 November 1964.
£120.00

1p, 4to. In fair condition, aged and lightly creased. Folded twice. The letter begins: 'Dear Bernard, | You probably know that I have just returned from Cuba and it was an exciting trip. | Unfortunately, one of the most depressing things was their very bad theatre; this is particularly because it is new and has no tradition, but also, to a great extent, due to their intolerable isolation.' Although there is little that they can do, Wesker promised to 'send as many plays and books' as he can.

[Peter Ustinov, film and theatre actor.] Autograph Card Signed ('Peter (USTINOV)'), describing himself as a 'lousy correspondent', regarding his mother's death and his own 'shyness'.

Author: 
Peter Ustinov [Sir Peter Alexander Ustinov] (1921-2004), Academy Award winning film and theatre actor, author [his mother the artist Nadia Benois [Nadezhda Leontievna Ustinova] (1896-1975)]
Publication details: 
Paris. 23 June 1975.
£120.00

Seventeen lines of text, on both sides of a piece of grey card. In good condition. Written in felt-tip pen, and difficult to decipher in places, as for example the Paris address and name of recipient. Begins: 'Surprise, surprise, dear [?], it is no longer true that I have not answered a single letter. Dear Nadia was so popular a person that I am still struggling with an Everest of condolences, and this far happier event has given me a momentary pause in my labours'.

[John Fawcett, actor and playwright.] Autograph Letter Signed ('John Fawcett'), as Treasurer of the Covent Garden Theatrical Fund, to 'C Perkins Esq', regarding money 'intended for the Widow Paulo', and the sending of account books.

Author: 
John Fawcett (1769-1837), actor and playwright associated with the Theatre Royal, Covent Garden
Publication details: 
'Botley Southampton | (The proper way to direct to me) | 9 Sepr 1835'.
£50.00

1p, 4to. In fair condition, lightly aged, with slight wear at head repaired on reverse with archival tape. The context of the letter is explained in Fawcett's entry in the Oxford DNB: 'In September 1829 Fawcett was superseded in the management of Covent Garden […] the theatre in which he had been a main prop for thirty-nine years. With a salary of £100 a year allowed him as treasurer and trustee of the Covent Garden Theatrical Fund he retired to a cottage at Botley, near Southampton.' The letter begins: 'Some weeks back I enclos'd you a draft for £10 intended for the Widow Paulo.

[Marie Lohr, Australian film and stage actress.] Autograph Card Signed ('Marie Löhr') to 'Miss Johnson'

Author: 
Marie Lohr [Marie Löhr] (1890-1875), Australian film and stage actress
Publication details: 
Bexhill-on-Sea postmark; 27 August 1920.
£45.00

Postcard with printed stamp. In good condition, on aged paper. Address by her to 'Miss Johnson [identified in pencil as Isa Johnson] | 23 Weltje Road | Hammersmith | London - W'. The card reads: 'My thanks for your letter - I am sorry I did not see you to speak to the other day. I hate leaving here in next few days it has done me such a lot of good.'

[Sir John Hare, actor-manager, to Willy Clarkson, theatrical wigmaker and homosexual blackmailer.] Autograph Letter Signed ('John Hare'), giving instructions on a wig 'of great importance', required for an American tour.

Author: 
Sir John Hare (1844-1921), actor and manager of the Garrick Theatre, London [Willy Clarkson [William Berry Clarkson (1861-1934), theatrical wigmaker and costume designer, homosexual blackmailer]
Publication details: 
On letterhead of 'Mr. John Hare's Autumn Provincial Tour, 1900' (Birmingham, Liverpool, Manchester). 15 September 1900.
£80.00

2pp, 12mo. In good condition, lightly aged. The letter casts an interesting sidelight on the practicalities of the late-Victorian theatre. He begins by explaining that he is sending back a wig he made for him, which was 'an admirable one in every way', and asking that he make him 'one like it for America & to bestow your best skill on it as it is of great importance to me'. He instructs him to 'make the wig a shade darker, something of the color it is dyed behind, & put a little natural white hair on the temples each side'.

Autograph Letter Signed ('Ch. Fechter.') to an unnamed 'dear Friend', describing himself as 'so young a fellow as your devoted comrade, now writing', and expressing 'profound and hearty friendship'

Author: 
Charles Fechter [Charles Albert Fechter] (1822-1879), French actor and playwright who found enormous success in Britain and America
Publication details: 
No place. 25 October 1861.
£50.00

1p, 12mo. In good condition, lightly aged. Begins: 'My very dear Friend, | I lack words to express my real gratitude for your heartfelt kindness to so young a fellow as your devoted comrade, here writing'. He hopes for an opportunity to show proof of his 'profound and hearty friendship'. He ends with renewed thanks, and 'sincere loves [sic] to your good Wife and dear self'.

[Cosmo Hamilton and his 'Eugenic play'.] Autograph Letter Signed to J. L. Garvin, editor of the Pall Mall Gazette, regarding his play 'The Blindness of Virtue', with reference to eugenicist Caleb Saleeby.

Author: 
Cosmo Hamilton [born Henry Charles Hamilton Gibbs] (1870-1942), playwright and novelist [James Louis Garvin (1868-1947), editor of the Pall Mall Gazette; Caleb Saleeby (1878-1940); eugenics]
Publication details: 
On letterhead of Whiteleaf, Princes Risborough, Buckinghamshire. 'Monday' [1914]
£45.00

2pp, 12mo. In fair condition, aged and worn. Folded twice. The letter begins: 'When my Eugenic play “The Blindness of Virtue” was first produced at the Little Theatre two years ago [i.e. in 1912] (about which Dr Saleeby [i.e. eugenicist Caleb Saleeby (1878-1940)] wrote very kindly & in great agreement in the P. M. G) you were kind enough to send a member of your staff to see me for a talk.' He explains that since that time he has had the play 'in the United States & Canada where it is still running & I have many more things to say about it & those places'.

[Charles Fechter, Anglo-French actor and playwright.] Two Autograph Letters Signed to 'Mr. Osborne', the first regarding his itinerary and the choosing of a plot suited to Osborne's style; the second regarding his busy life and examining a play.

Author: 
Charles Fechter [Charles Albert Fechter] (1822-1879), French actor and playwright who found enormous success in Britain and America
Publication details: 
Letter One: on letterhead of 30 Park Road, Regent's Park, N.W. [London] 17 August 1869. Letter Two: no place, on monogram letterhead (with motto 'Faiblesse vaut vice'). 19 April 1872.
£120.00

Both items are 2pp, 12mo, and bifoliums. Both in good condition, lightly aged, and each folded once. The second has rust marks to margin from a paperclip. Given the sunbject-matter, the recipient may be a relation of the actress Mrs William Barry (1739-1771), whose maiden name was Osborne. ONE: 17 August 1769; on Park Road letterhead. Signed 'Ch. Fechter.' He begins by announcing: 'I have, by no means, altered my mind; but have been – and am still – strolling about the country'.

[Arthur Weigall, Egyptologist.] Autograph Letter Signed to F. Eyles regarding his work as set designer for London revues, referring to Gertie Millar, Fay Compton, Robert Hale, Phyllis Monkman, Raymond Rôze, King of the Belgians, President Roosevelt.

Author: 
Arthur Weigall [Arthur Edward Pearse Brome Weigall] (1880-1934), Egyptologist who succeeded Howard Carter at Luxor as Chief Inspector of Antiquities for Upper Egypt, set designer for the London stage
Publication details: 
'The Studio | 117. Fulham Rd.' [London.] 22 March [1916].
£180.00

3pp, 12mo. Bifolium. In good condition, lightly aged. Folded once. With envelope addressed to 'F. Eyles Esq. | 38 Bedford Place, | Russell Square, | WC'. Year of letter added in pencil. Signed 'Arthur Weigall'. Having made his name in Luxor as an Egyptologist, Weigall was a successful set-designer for the London revues during the First World War, and the present item concerns a magazine article regarding this work.

[Christopher Fry edits, as 'A. H. Harris': the Birth of a Literary Career] Thirteen numbers (1-11, 16, 17) of the 'Bedford Modern School Gazette', with 'B.M.S. Gazette Supplement'.

Author: 
Christopher Fry (1907-2005), playwright, [born Arthur Hammond Harris]; Bedford Modern School
Publication details: 
[Bedford Modern School.] Nos 1-11 (Feb. 1925 to July 1927): Printed by the "Bedfordshire Standard" Newspaper Co. (1913), Ltd, Bedford. Nos 16 (Oct. 1928) and 17 (Dec. 1928): Printed by the County Press (Bedford) Limited. Supplement: 30 March 1926.
£750.00

Fourteen items, all 8vo. Seven numbers (4-9 and 16) are 16pp; number 17 is 26pp; other numbers range from 8 to 12pp, except for the 'B.M.S. Gazette Supplement' (30 March 1926) which has 4pp. The first five numbers on cheap newspaper stock; from the sixth number onwards the paper quality improves. Number 17 ('Special Christmas Number') has lost its back cover. The other thirteen numbers are complete. A frail survival, in fair overall condition, on aged and worn paper. Numbers 4-11 with 'Eagle' masthead, otherwise no settled layout.

[Sir John Pollock and Eugène Brieux: London theatre, censorship, venereal disease.] First separate English and American printings of 'Damaged Goods', the former with Pollock's autograph emendations; copy of 'The Play Pictorial' on London production.

Author: 
Sir John Pollock; Eugène Brieux; The Connecticut Society of Social Hygiene; George Bernard Shaw
Publication details: 
English edition: A. C. Fifield, London, 1914. American Edition: Brentano's, New York, for the Connecticut Society of Social Hygiene, 1912. The Play Pictorial: London, 1917.
£950.00

Three items from the papers of Sir John Pollock, relating to his translation of Eugène Brieux's scandalous play 'Les Avariés'.

[Christopher Fry edits and contributes to] Seven numbers of 'Springboard | The Barnardo Magazine for Schools'

Author: 
Christopher Fry (1907-2005), playwright [Dr. Barnardo's Homes [National Incorporated Association for the Reclamation of Destitute Waif Children], British charity founded in 1866]
Publication details: 
Dr. Barnardo's Homes, Stepney Causeway, E1 [London]. Seven numbers: Vol.1 No.2 (Winter 1935); Vol.1 No.3 (Spring 1936); Vol.1 No.4 (Summer 1936); Vol.1 No.5 (Winter 1936); Vol.1 No.6 (Spring 1937); Vol.3 No.1 (Summer 1939); Vol.3 No.3 (Spring 1940).
£320.00

Seven volumes, the first three in 4to, the last four small 4to, ranging in length from 32pp to 44pp. Each stapled into coloured printed wraps, the first six carrying a stylised drawing of a boy doing a jump (from a springboard). In fair condition, on lightly aged and worn paper, with rusted staples. Each volume is filled with prose, poetry, illustration and photographs by a number of different contributors, including pieces taken from public school magazines. The only unattributed items are the book reviews, which are clearly the work of Fry himself.

[Christopher Fry, playwright.] Fry's own copy of his book 'Can You Find Me: A Family History', with autograph notes, containing correspondence from relatives, photographs, and a typed transcript of a radio interview, with autograph additions by Fry.

Author: 
Christopher Fry (1907-2005), playwright [Oxford University Press]
Publication details: 
Book: Oxford University Press, 1978. Correspondence between 1982 and 1987. Interview [1979].
£750.00

The book is 272pp, 8vo. A good copy, lightly aged, with binding sunned along top, in worn dustwrapper. The volume contains – along with autograph corrections of incidentals – a couple of autograph notes in pencil, one of a minor nature and the other reading: 'Daisy & Charles attended the funeral – March 26 – as recorded in Archibald Marshall's diary'; also one minor emendation in ink. The material inserted in the volume is described below. Accompanying the volume is a long typewritten radio script of an interview between Fry and 'Leslie', with autograph additions in pencil by Fry.

[Christopher Fry, playwright.] Typescript of a cinematic 'Story Treatment' of 'A Christmas Carol' by Charles Dickens: 'A 90 Minute Animated Color Version', 'Adapted by Christopher Fry'.

Author: 
Christopher Fry (1907-2005), playwright; Charles Dickens
Publication details: 
With address of Fry's agent: ACTAC (Theatrical & Cinematic) Limited, 16, Cadogan Lane, London S.W.1'. Without date [1970s or 1980s?].
£400.00

In addition to his distinguished career as a playwright, Fry had some success in Hollywood. He completely rewrote (uncredited) the screenplay of 'Ben-Hur' (1959), and was responsible for the screenplay of the Dino De Laurentiis epic 'The Bible: In the Beginning' (1966), directed by John Houston. The present item is a treatment for a film that did not make it into production. It is [1] + 71pp, 8vo. Each page on a separate loose leaf. With thin card covers, also loose, the front cover carrying a duplication of the title-page, and the back cover blank. In good condition, lightly aged.

[Christopher Fry makes directorial suggestions.] Autograph Letter Signed ('Christopher') to 'Dear George', giving detailed comments on a production of Congreve's 'Way of the World', with reference to Joan Plowright and John Moffatt.

Author: 
Christopher Fry (1907-2005), playwright [Joan Plowright; John Moffatt; William Gaskill; Chichester Festival]
Publication details: 
[From the 1984 Chichester Festival?]
£250.00

The item would appear to relate to William Gaskill's 1984 Chichester Festival production of Congreve's 'Way of the World', in which Joan Plowright played Lady Wishford, and John Moffatt played Witwoud, although it is not clear why Fry should have been making directorial suggestions in this case. 2pp, 8vo. Written in pencil. In fair condition, aged and worn. Folded twice. From the Fry papers, and so possibly either a draft or not sent. The identity of the recipient is not clear.

[Rolando Pieraccini, Italian sculptor, author and publisher ('Eurographica').] 43 Typed Letters Signed to playwright Christopher Fry, regarding the publication of signed limited editions of his works.

Author: 
Rolando Pieraccini [Roland Pieraccini], Italian sculptor and publisher ('Eurographica'), settled in Finland [Christopher Fry (1907-2005), playwright]
Publication details: 
Earlier letters on letterheads of his Helsinki publishing house Eurographica; later letters on his personal Helsinki letterhead. Between 1984 and 1996.
£2,000.00

43 letters in 8vo and 12mo, making a total of 44 pp. Signed 'Rolando Pieraccini' and (latterly) 'Rolando'. Thirteen of the letters (1984-1986; all 8vo) on 'Eurographica' letterhead, the others (1986-1996; 27 in 12mo and 3 in 8vo) on Pieraccini's personal letterhead. Also present is a carbon copy of a two-page letter from Pieraccini to Penny Eckley of Oxford University Press, regarding copyright matters. The collection in good condition, lightly-aged.

[Lusia Treves, Dutch playwright and journalist, and her husband Karl Guttmann, Austro-Dutch theatre director.] Twelve ALsS and three ACsS from Treves, and one ALS from Guttmann, to playwright Christopher Fry, with other material.

Author: 
Karl Guttman (1913-1995), Austrian-born Dutch theatre director; his wife Luisa Treves [Margaretha Roselaar] (1919-2015), Dutch playwright and theatre journalist; Christopher Fry (1907-2005), dramatist
Publication details: 
From Amsterdam, as well as France, Germany and Switzerland. Between 1961 and 1997.
£1,200.00

Guttman was, as one of his wife's letters in this collection states, Fry's 'prophet' in Holland, supporting his work from the earliest days. In 1961 Guttman directed the world premiere of Fry's 'Curtmantle' at Tilburg, and in 1981 he directed a production of 'The Lady's not for Burning' in Vienna. The collection is in good condition, with light signs of age and wear. The letters are all in English, long and intimate, addressed to 'Kit' and sometimes to 'Phyl', i.e. Fry's wife Phyllis.

[Herbert Whittaker, Canadian theatre critic, designer and director.] Eight long Signed Letters (six typed and two in autograph) to English playwright Christopher Fry, on theatre matters including a reading at the Toronto Arts and Letters Club.

Author: 
Herbert Whittaker (1910-2006), Canadian theatre critic, designer and director [Christopher Fry (1907-2005), playwright; Canadian Players; Hart House Theatre; Crest Theatre; Montreal Repertory Theatre]
Publication details: 
From his address in Lamport Avenue, Toronto, Ontario, Canada; between 11 July 1998 and 7 April 2002.
£850.00

An interesting correspondence on theatre matters, from one of Canada's most influential critics and designers to 'a favourite poet', the English verse dramatist Christopher Fry. Whittaker discusses, among other matters, mutual acquaintances including Sir John Gielgud and Leonard White, past productions of Fry's plays, a 1998 meeting with the playwright at his West Dean home, and a reading he organises of Fry's 'A Ringing of Bells' at the Toronto Arts and Letters Club. The eight letters are in good condition, lightly aged.

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