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May 13, 1934 - Image 6

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1934-05-13

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THE MICHIGAN DAILY

1934 Dramatic Season Opens

Tomorrow Night With "The Brontes

., ___ -
Q

ElizabethRisdon

Elizabeth Risdon, Appearing As Charlotte B ronte

Has The Part Of
Charlotte Bronte
Violet Kemble-Cooper Will
Portray Emily Bronte;
Play Is In Nine Scenes
Six Shows Planned
'And So To Bed' Will Be
Second Play Of Season;
Leonto vieh To Star
The premier Americah production
of Alfred Sangster's stirring melodra-
ma, "The Brontes," opens the 1934
Dramatic Season tomorrow night in
Lydia Mendelssohn Theatre. The
show will run for seven performances
through Friday night.
Plays on the Bronte sisters, Char-
lotte, Emily, and Anne, and their
brother Branwell Bronte, have been
written and shown in abundance
since "The Barrets of Wimpole
Street" proved the stage possibilities
of literary biography, "The Bronts"
is said by many to head the list.; Not
only is it the first play about this ex-
traordinary family, but it has just
closed a run of 305 performances at
the Royalty Theatre in London and
is now touring England.
Tells Of Repression
The play tells how the Rev. Pat-
rick Bronte repressed and tyrannized
his family; how the three girls in the
lonely Yorkshire vicarage won fame
bey their anonymous writings; how
the moody Emily died, and the gentle
Anne, and the drunken brother Bran-
well; hrow the selfish father; in his
old age, tried to break off Charlotte's
romance with his curate, and how
they were married in spite of him;
and how the senile patriarch survived
his group of geniuses. r
Elizabeth Risdon of the New York
Theatre Guild has the part of Char-
lotte Bronte and Violet Kemble-Coo-
per portrays Emily. It is a new kind
of role for Miss Cooper, according
to Robert Henderson, director, in
that she plays a part thatis stern,
tempestuous, and highly dramatic as
compared to her previous popular
light comedy roles.
Compton Plays Father
Francis Compton, brother of Fay
Compton, the English stage star, has
the important role of the father; Au-
drey Ridgewell appears as Anne
Bronte, and Robert Henderson as
Branwell.,
Others in the cast include Jessie
Busley as the Reverend Bronte's sis-'
ter, Brandon Evans as William Make-
piece Thackeray; Clifford Dunstan
as the famous reviewer, George Lews;
Lee Crowe as the young publisher of
"Jane Eyre"; Madame Ludmilla To-
retzka and Donald Randolph as Ma-
dame and Monsieur Heger; Edith
Gresham, Helena Stungo, Richard
Abert, Oswald Marshall, and Pierre
Watkin. The play 'is in nine scenes.
Rolo Peters Starred
The second show of the season will
be "And So To Bed," with Madame
Eugenie Leontovitch, star of "Grand
Hotel" and "Twei tieth Century,"
playing the leading role. Rollo Pet-
ers has the male lead in this pro-
duction, as Mr. Pepys.
An innovation for the Dramatic
Season is contained in the third pro-
duction, which presents Walter Sle-
zak, Olive Olsen, and Dorothy Vernon
in the continental musical comedy
"Meet My Sister.". This is the first
time that such a show has been at-
tempted in the six years-that the Dra-
matic Season has been given annual-
ly. Advance demands for tickets for
this show have been so great that an
extra matinee performance has been
added to the regular schedule, Mr.
Henderson said.

"The Shinipg lour" Next
"The Shining Hour," Keith Win-
ter's current New York play, will be
the fourth production, and will in-
clude in its cast Violet Kemble-Coo-
per, Rollo Peters, and Audrey Ridge-
well.
The last two plays of the season are
the most ambitious by Mr. Henderson,
one being "a new interpretation of
Shakespeare's heroic melodrama,
'Macbeth,' and the other Howard
Lindsay's farce on college life, 'She
Loves MedNot.' "Ian Keith and Flor-
ence Reed have 'the leading roles in
the former play, while the principal
cast member in "She Loves Me Not" is
Gloria Blondell, sister of Joan Blon-
dell.

ha modern creative dancers. As John
t47+ rtiin, di inguidshed dance critic of
the New 'York Times rev(ently wrote.
"In the same manner that Mr. Weid-
mnan is perhaps the leading male
dancer in America, Miss Humphrey
combines to an extraordinary degree
her sharp-pointed witty style and a
fine gay creative spirit."
In addition to their concert recitals,
these two dancers have fairly revolu-
tionized the dancing of the elaborate_
Broadway musical revues.
Presenting their dance groups in
serious and authentic dance composi-
ions, first in "Americana" and this
fall in "As Thousands Cheer," with
Clifton Webb and Marilyn Miller,
their precise and full-flavored style
achieved a brilliant success.
Appeared As Soloists
Both Mr. Weidman and Miss Hum-
phrey later personally appeared as
soloists and choreographers in the
New York Theatre Guild's production
of Moliere's "The School of Hus-
bands." Several of their numbers from

Madame Eugenie Leontovich, starof "Grand Hotel" and "Twentieth
Century," who will take the leading role in the comedy, "And So To Bed,"
to be given second on the Dramatic Scasun program.
this performance will be presented in their programs are primarily enter-
their Ann. Arbor recitals. tainment for its own sake. Their danc-
Again John Martin applauded their ing has 'lift' and a joyous .infectious
success. "Miss Humphrey," he writes, fl Miss Hmphrey's nuber,
"is as captivating and as decorative oi"Descent into a Dangerous Place,"
Sas the great Isabella herself, and which she performs on the Thursday
there is more Moliere in one move afternoon program, is as delightful
and gesture of Charles Weidman than and charming a dance composition
in hours of spoken verse." as I have ever seen."I
In bringing these two American
dancers to Ann Arbor, Robert Hen-- With Miss Humphrey and Charles
dersoi points out that they differ both recean Viviappea, Pauline Law-
fromMarha Gaha andMis En- rece .end l Viviian Finie, pianists. Their
ters. elaborate costumes have been espe-
"There is a dash and gaiety," he cially created by Miss Lawrence.
says, "to both of these artists, quite
surpassing, I feel, any other dances HARRIS HALL DISCUSSION
in the country. Their work is primarily The discussion to be held at Harris
colorful and robust. Backed by the Hall at 7 p.m. today will be continua-
soundest of technical resources, the tion of the questions asked by the
audience is never conscious of any- students on any i'eligious subject. Rev.
thing obtuse or involved. In the man- Henry Lewis and Rabbi Heller will
ner of the Monte Carlo Ballet Russe, lead the discussion.

r,
t
a
x

Miss Risdon, of the New York Theatre Guild, will take the pasit of Charlotte Bronte in the opening
production of the 194 Season, "The Brontes" to begin tomorrow night.

Dramatic Season Idea Held To
Be Great Theatre Development

Barrett, Robert Lorraine, Rose Ho-
bart, Tom Powers Rollo Peters, Violet
and Anthony Kemble-Cooper, Violet
Heming, Katherine Wick Kelly, and
the dancer, Angna Enters.

In 10 weeks, April 9 through June
16, Robert Henderson will have pre-
sented his Dramatic Seasons in five
cities throughout the country - Mil-
waukee, Ann Arbor, Louisville, Toledo
and Detroit.,
Burns Mantle, well-known critic of4
the New York Daily News and promi-
nent for his annual "Best Plays"
series, recently wrote: "I consider the
organization and development of the
dramatic season idea the most im-
portant thing that has happened to
the American theatre in general since
the rebirth of the great resident com-
panies about 1895."
The same idea was expressed last
week by Ashton Stevens in the Chi-
Complete Schedule Of
PlaysD, ates Is Given
The complete list of plays for the
1934 Dramatic Season is as fol-
lows:
"The Brontes," with Violet Kem..
ble-Cooper and Elizabeth Risdon,
Monday, May 14, through Friday,
May 18.
"And So To Bed," with Rollo
Peters, Madame Eugenie Leonto-
vichsand Roberta Beat ty. Satur-
day, May 19, through Thursday,
May 24.
Dance Recital, with Charles
Weidman and Doris Humphreys.
Matinees May 21, 22, and 24.
"Meet My Sister," with Walter
Slezak, Olive Olsen, and Dorothy
Vernon, Friday, May 25, through
Wednesday matinee, May 30.
"The Shining Hour," with Bert
Lytell, Violet Kemble-Cooper, and
Jessie Busley, Wednesday, May 30,
through Monday, June 4.
"Macbeth," with Ian Keith andj
Florence Reed,. Tuesday, June 5,
through Sa~lturday, June 9.
"She Loves Me Not," with Gloria
Blondell, Monday, June 11, through
Saturday, June 16.

cago American when he said, in con-
nection with the unusual success of
the dramatic season just closed at
the Pabst Theatre in Milwaukee, that
"such audiences and such enthusiasm
appear in the light of a minor miracle
today in the theatre. Actually such
success re-proves the truth that the
living theatre is never dead
First Season Inclusive
In 1930 the first Dramatic Season
- the first theatre festival as such in
America -included a number of
prominent members of the stage and
presented many .well-known plays.
Among the former were Margaret An-
glin and Katherine Wick Kelley (who
returns this year in "And So To Bed").
Plays given included "Lady Winde-
mere's Fan," "Excess Thggapge," "The
Royal Family," and ".T1e Sea Gull."
The following spring the season
branched out and brought an even
more distinguished list of ar isos I (
Ann Arbor.
Among plays ivt were teu "Elev-
tra" of Sophocles, with Blanche Yu'ka
and Martha Gra ham: "The Father";
"The Way of the World," Wtlh Ernest
Cossart and Miss Yurka; "Cprice,'
with Miss Yurka; Ibsen's "Ghosts"
Bernard Shaw's "Arms and the
Man," with Tom Powers, VioleI. 11m-
ing, and Mr. Cossart; Lnd Noel Cow-
ard's "Private Lives," wtih Msi Hen-
ing and Miss Powers.
1932 Program Varied
In 1932 "There's Always Julicl"
opened the season, and was foLxxwed
by "Candida" with P iS C .nl
Geoffrey Kerr in 1"T Animal King
dom" and Violet K mb,,-Coope In
"The Vinegar 'T'ec ame nexl, a
'"Peter Ibielson," wi h Mis Cooper
and Glen Hunter cia; d _he ya
Last year 'The Lady of the Cam i
lias' and "Twelftil N ii' '' c n
sidered ni t m (
ent~ations. C01 het''.;, t cA m
Living,'' "'Analoher L a i' g a p
"Springtime For Hmy ' and
Mad Hopes." Auon he arts in'
these plays were Jane Cowl, Ed ti

The Thrill OfThe iving Theat re!

SPRING IN ANN ARBOR -and again the brilliant theatre festival at
the Lydia Mendelssohn Theatre for five weeks, from May 14 through
June 16. Madame Leontovich, Ian Keith, Florence Reed, Charles
Weidman and. Doris Hlumphrey and many others.
The ranking New York stars, the latest and most interesting of the
New York plays- glamour fnd excitement and distinctionin the Ii ist
of the Dramatic Seasons, opening TOMORROW NIGhT at8 :15, witlI
Alfred Sangster's stirring London success-

('-P.

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44

'p
DR

F.S"

with the New York Theatre Guild Stars

VIOLET
KEMBLE-COOPER

ELIZABETH
ISDON

TilE AMERICAN PREMIERE PRODUCTION
"An engrossing an(] powerful play on the most fascinating family in
our history. Brilliantly played, with Miss Cooper giving the most stir-
rinlg ierforilaee of her cMweer."
ASIITON STEVENS in The Chicago American.

Season Seats Still On Sale at Box Office
SDIA MENDELSSOIIN THEA TRE
Matinees Wednesday, Friday and Saturday at 3:15

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