Tag Archive: London stage calendar


Entry 54.8 The Boy Friend. In the female cast the role of Hortense is listed as being played by Violetta. Her full name is Violetta Farjeon for whom the role was actually written. Violetta Farjeon was born in 1923 and died 2015.

Theatre in London has celebrated a rich and influential history, and in 1976 the first volume of J. P. Wearing’s reference series provided researchers with an indispensable resource of these productions. In the decades since the original calendars were produced, several research aids have become available, notably various reference works and the digitization of important newspapers and relevant periodicals.The second edition of The London Stage 1950–1959: A Calendar of Productions, Performers, and Personnel provides a chronological calendar of London shows from the first of January, 1950, through the 31st of December, 1959. The volume chronicles more than 3,100 productions at 52 major central London theatres during this period. For each production the following information is provided:

  • Title
  • Author
  • Theatre
  • Performers
  • Personnel
  • Opening and Closing Dates
  • Number of Performances


Other details include genre of the production, number of acts, and a list of reviews. A comment section includes other interesting information, such as plot description, first-night reception by the audience, noteworthy performances, staging elements, and details of performances in New York either prior to or after the London production.

Among the plays staged in London during this decade were Look Back in Anger, One Way Pendulum, The Birthday Party, A Taste of Honey, Chicken Soup with Barley, Five Finger Exercise, The Hostage, and Waiting for Godot, as well as numerous musical comedies (British and American), foreign works, operas, ballets, and revivals of English classics.

A definitive resource, this edition revises, corrects, and expands the original calendar. In addition, approximately 20 percent of the material—in particular, information of adaptations and translations, plot sources, and comment information—is new. Arranged chronologically, the shows are fully indexed by title, genre, and theatre. A general index includes numerous subject entries on such topics as acting, audiences, censorship, costumes, managers, performers, prompters, staging, and ticket prices. The London Stage 1950-1959 will be of value to scholars, theatrical personnel, librarians, writers, journalists, and historians.

 

Theatre in London has celebrated a rich and influential history, and in 1976 the first volume of J. P. Wearing’s reference series provided researchers with an indispensable resource of these productions. In the decades since the original calendars were produced, several research aids have become available, notably various reference works and the digitization of important newspapers and relevant periodicals.The second edition of The London Stage 1940–1949: A Calendar of Productions, Performers, and Personnel provides a chronological calendar of London shows from the first of January, 1940, through the 31st of December, 1949. The volume chronicles more than 2,400 productions at 53 major central London theatres during this period. For each production the following information is provided:

  • Title
  • Author
  • Theatre
  • Performers
  • Personnel
  • Opening and Closing Dates
  • Number of Performances


Other details include genre of the production, number of acts, and a list of reviews. A comment section includes other interesting information, such as plot description, first-night reception by the audience, noteworthy performances, staging elements, and details of performances in New York either prior to or after the London production.

Among the plays staged in London during this decade were The Light of Heart, Mr. Bolfry, Perchance to Dream, Pacific 1860, Bless the Bride, The Lady’s Not for Burning, The Late Edwina Black, Outrageous Fortune, Seagulls over Sorrento, and Buoyant Billions, as well as numerous musical comedies (British and American), foreign works, operas, ballets, and revivals of English classics.

A definitive resource, this edition revises, corrects, and expands the original calendar. In addition, approximately 20 percent of the material—in particular, information of adaptations and translations, plot sources, and comment information—is new. Arranged chronologically, the shows are fully indexed by title, genre, and theatre. A general index includes numerous subject entries on such topics as acting, audiences, censorship, costumes, managers, performers, prompters, staging, and ticket prices. The London Stage 1940-1949 will be of value to scholars, theatrical personnel, librarians, writers, journalists, and historians.

Theatre in London has celebrated a rich and influential history, and in 1976 the first volume of J. P. Wearing’s reference series provided researchers with an indispensable resource of these productions. In the decades since the original calendars were produced, several research aids have become available, notably various reference works and the digitization of important newspapers and relevant periodicals.The second edition of The London Stage 1930–1939: A Calendar of Productions, Performers, and Personnel provides a chronological calendar of London shows from the first of January, 1930, through the 31st of December, 1939. The volume chronicles more than 4,250 productions at 61 major central London theatres during this period. For each production the following information is provided:

  1. Title
  2. Author
  3. Theatre
  4. Performers
  5. Personnel
  6. Opening and Closing Dates
  7. Number of Performances


Other details include genre of the production, number of acts, and a list of reviews. A comment section includes other interesting information, such as plot description, first-night reception by the audience, noteworthy performances, staging elements, and details of performances in New York either prior to or after the London production.

Among the plays staged in London during this decade were The Barretts of Wimpole Street, French without Tears, George and Margaret, The Greeks Had a Word for It, Laburnum Grove, Lady Precious Stream, The Late Christopher Bean, Love on the Dole, Me and My Girl, Private Lives, and 1066 and All That, as well as numerous musical comedies (British and American), foreign works, operas, ballets, and revivals of English classics.

A definitive resource, this edition revises, corrects, and expands the original calendar. In addition, approximately 20 percent of the material—in particular, information of adaptations and translations, plot sources, and comment information—is new. Arranged chronologically, the shows are fully indexed by title, genre, and theatre. A general index includes numerous subject entries on such topics as acting, audiences, censorship, costumes, managers, performers, prompters, staging, and ticket prices. The London Stage 1930-1939 will be of value to scholars, theatrical personnel, librarians, writers, journalists, and historians.

 

Review:

Opening a new or revised reference work is like opening an unearthed treasure. You never know what’s inside, but you know the baubles will bedazzle. The London Stage does not disappoint. Herewith each volume covers over 4,000 productions at more than three score theaters in the Bard’s hometown, so to speak. The tome—and it is a doorstopper weighing in at about seven pounds—provides first night details of plays over a decade, with one volume covering 1920-1929 and the second covering 1930-1939. Productions are arranged chronologically followed by the title of the work, genre, author, theater length of run, male and female cast members, production staff, plot précis, bibliography of reviews, and comment. The last ranges from what a reviewer might have thought, audience reception, and the like. Wearing gleaned the information from over a dozen specialized theater reviewing media, newspapers, nearly a dozen libraries and or archives, ranging from The British Library to Theatre Collection of Bristol University, and a half dozen specialized reference sources (e.g., Grove’s Who’s Who in Theatre). In other words, there may not be more comprehensive guides available. These works are a must-have for theater departments, and really any library interested in play productions.
American Reference Books Annual

For centuries, London theatre has celebrated a rich and influential history, and in 1976, the first volume of J. P. Wearing’s reference series provided scholars and other researchers with an indispensable resource of these productions. In the decades since the original calendars were produced, several research aids have become available, notably various reference works and the digitization of important newspapers and relevant periodicals.The London Stage 1910-1919 A Calendar of Productions, Performers, and Personnel, Second Edition provides a chronological calendar of London productions from the first of January 1910 through the 31st of December 1919. The volume chronicles more than 3,000 productions at 35 selected, major central London theatres during this period. For each production the following information is provided:

  • Title
  • Author
  • Theatre
  • Performers
  • Personnel
  • Opening and Closing Dates
  • Number of Performances


Other details include genre of the production, number of acts, and references to reviews. A comment section includes other interesting information about the production, such as a plot description, the first-night reception by the audience, noteworthy performances, staging elements, and details of performances in New York either prior to or after the London production.

A definitive resource, this edition revises, corrects, and expands the original, well-received calendar. In addition, approximately 20% of the material included (in particular, information of adaptations and translations, plot sources, and comment information) is new. Arranged chronologically, the productions are indexed fully by title, genre, and theatre. A general index also includes numerous subject entries on such topics as acting, audiences, censorship, costumes, managers, performers, prompters, staging, ticket prices, or other relevant subjects. An authoritative reference providing essential details, this work will be of value to scholars, theatrical personnel, librarians, writers, journalists, and historians.

Reviews:
These three volumes update earlier editions–The London Stage, 1890-1899 (1st ed., CH, Nov’76), 1900-1909 (1st ed., CH, Oct’81), and 1910-1919 (1st ed., 1982). These calendars furnish chronological listings of productions, performers, and personnel on the London stage; each one chronicles over 3,000 productions at more than 30 selected theaters in the London area. With the availability of new digitized resources and other reference works, Wearing (has amassed new details to embellish his earlier work. Entries include title of production, genre, number of acts, authors, theater, date and length of run, performers, personnel, references to reviews, and more. Once users become familiar with the format and key to the entries, these volumes, which are arranged in a logical fashion, are easy to use. Included are title, genre, theater, and general indexes, as well as lists of references. Concluding each entry are comments made by the author that provide readers with further information. The publisher indicates that approximately 20 percent of the content is new in these volumes, including material concerning translations, adaptations, and plot sources. Readers may also wish to consult Wearing’s The London Stage, 1930-1939 and The London Stage, 1940-1949 Second editions for both these books are in the works, as well as for the 1920-29 and 1950-59 periods. Summing Up: Recommended. Graduate students and above.
CHOICE

The 1st editions of these volumes were published in 1976, nearly 40 years ago. Since that time several new research aids have become available in the form of digitization of newspapers and periodicals, making this update a worthwhile purchase. The 2d editions provide a chronological calendar of London productions from January 1890 through December 1899; from January 1900 through December 1909; and from January 1910 through December 1919. More than 20 percent of the material is new to these editions, particularly information on adaptations and translations, plot sources, and comments. The London Stage 1890-1899 chronicles more than 3,000 productions at over 30 London theaters. The London Stage 1900-1909 presents more than 3,000 productions at 35 major central London theaters. The London Stage 1910-1919 chronicles some 3,000 productions at 35 major central London theaters during this 10-year span. For each users will find the following information: title, author, theater, actors, assisting personnel, opening and closing dates, and the number of performances. There is also information on the type of genre, the number of acts, and reviews. Comments have been expanded in this edition and include details on the plot, audience reception, and noteworthy performances. The works are thoroughly indexed by play title, genre, and theater. A longer general index provides users access. These volumes will be useful in academic and public libraries where theater students, writers, and theater historians will have access to their many treasures.
American Reference Books Annual

The critics verdicts:
Arms and the Man:

“Wearing assembles much here for advanced researchers to delight in, too. The informative intrdouction, the appendices . . . and the abundance of annotations throughout the text attest to his passion for detail and intimate knowledge of his subject. . . . The competence and breadth of Wearing’s research, his judicious selection of supplementary material, and his insight into Shaw’s life and work make this edition of Arms and the Man an obvious choice for classroom teaching and pleasure reading. Moreover, it should be the one of record for any serious scholar.” Professor Brad Kent, Université Laval, Canada.

The Second Mrs Tanqueray:

“Although I have known this play for many years, J.P. Wearing’s introduction sheds new light on many interesting aspects of the piece, which I look forward to teaching afresh with the benefit of this text. The footnotes and the supplementary material all help in understanding the play, placing it in the social and legal context of its day. Not that it is a mere period piece; Pinero’s skill as a playwright is impressive, and one hopes that this edition will encourage new productions.” Richard Foulkes, Professor, University of Leicester

“A century and more after the fact, A. W. Pinero’s most penetrating play, The Second Mrs Tanqueray, has now been given a full-dress evaluative and contextual editorial treatment that does complete justice to its subject. J. P. Wearing, editor of Pinero’s letters, has brought his finely honed scholarly skills and broad knowledge of English theatre and culture to the task of presenting the single most authoritative text of Pinero’s play in existence and surrounding it with several sets of informative critical, social, and cultural writing, along with a comprehensive introduction, chronology, and bibliography. An immense amount of research lies behind this enterprise, and a great range of potential readers, from undergraduate and graduate students to historians and critics, will be the beneficiaries.” Joseph Donohue, Professor Emeritus, University of Massachusetts
The Shakespeare Diaries:

“J.P. Wearing’s The Shakespeare’s Diaries…is a genuine work of scholarly imagination…a work of prodigious research, based on all the facts we know about Shakespeare’s life. The book is crammed with fascinating incident…there is much engaging stuff about his relations with the actors in his company, with the Dark Lady (Aemilia Lanier) who deceived him with Southampton, and with such fellow playwrights as Ben Jonson and John Marston…The Diary is crammed full of plague and deaths and burials, as well as gossip about the great and the near great, including the Essex Rebellion and the War of the Theatres. Shakespeare comes across as a mild, gentle, and generous human being.” Robert Brustein.
“In The Shakespeare Diaries: A Fictional Autobiography J. P. Wearing combines factual accuracy with the vividness of fiction in a delightful and entertaining book. The lush detail and fascinating context make this “faction,” as Wearing describes it, far more stimulating and memorable than non-fiction, while generous annotations lend scholarly authority to this work. We get to know Shakespeare as a person through his family and friends and through his private aspirations, motives, fears, and ruminations, not to mention his carnal appetites as a gay blade–sure to surprise, if not scandalize. We meet the irrascible Ben Jonson, and we feel death breathing down our collars. Plague, taverns, duels and envy bring Shakespeare’s England to life. His discussions with colleagues lend background and depth to the famous plays and characters we know so well. Would that I had had access to Shakespeare’s and Nashe’s discussions on The Merchant of Venice when I was a student! Although Professor Wearing incorporates many of Shakespeare’s own words into his diaries, he has many an interesting muse and beautiful phrase of his own, all carefully presented in authentic Elizabethan and Jacobean English. I didn’t want the book to end and felt sad when it did. I had grown quite fond of Will, and suddenly I missed him. Were the last words of the last entry Shakespeare’s or Wearing’s? “Little there is in this life that surpasseth the company of good friends.” Juri Sobol.
“The author . . . is a professor emeritus at the University of Arizona who has spent his life steeped in literature. His goal, judging by the blurb on the back of the book, is both to entertain and educate. As a way of introducing students to William Shakespeare, this book could be a real boon. Despite the author’s use of cod Shakespearean language, not to mention liberal quotes from the Bard himself, this is a good read that should not put off too many younger readers, as the works of the playwright and poet himself can with their arcane and archaic use of the English language. The best example of this might be in the use of the full text of certain sonnets, the language of which contrasts greatly with the general text of the ‘diaries.’ . . . Wearing has also gone to considerable trouble to cover pretty much everything that Shakespeare has written and quite possibly a fair amount that was loosely attributed to him. In this way, readers will get a good overview of the works and the thought processes that might possibly have gone into them. They will also discover that Shakespeare spent an inordinate amount of his time with other playwrights, first Marlowe and then Jonson and,additionally, his sex life was varied to say the least. We all know that he slept with his wife before they married. The affairs with Marlowe, Southampton and other men and women have been better kept secrets until now. The professor has also frequently been overambitious in his attempts to get into Shakespeare’s mind. In attempting to demonstrate his subject’s foresight, far too often he merely demonstrates his own hindsight, apparently innocently introducing subjects that lo and behold are used a few pages later in the creation of a play. The diaries also contain some interesting if not wholly realistic criticism of the plays. In one of the longest entries, a man who is ostensibly Thomas Nashe analyses an early draft of The Merchant of Venice using the kind of sensibilities that are far more 21st-century liberal American than contemporary. Overall, any book that makes the Shakespearean canon more accessible is to be welcomed. While the diaries are unlikely to convince anybody that they really reflect the thoughts of the great man, they are a good mechanism to bring his life and writings to a wider public.” Philip Fisher, The British Theatre Guide, 19 November 2007.
“The end result is a fictional autobiography, or what Wearing supposes Shakespeare himself might have written had he kept an ongoing diary. Thus the diaries include virtually every known fact about Shakespeare, details of his many theatrical and social contemporaries, allusions to historical events, as well as what the author’s introduction describes as ‘Shakespeare’s views’ on his own works and those of other dramatists. In an admirable attempt to lend the diaries an air of authenticity, Wearing employs only those words that were part of the dominant Elizabethan and Jacobean vocabularies in addition to lines, fragments and phrases drawn from Shakespeare’s plays and sonnets. There is, naturally enough, much in the diaries that requires further explanation and Wearing’s ample footnotes are, in that regard, helpful. An overview of Shakespeare’s known activities (of which there are few) and historical timelines precede each chapter, while an extensive introduction offers much fuller factual material, extended references to the plays and other additional details. . . . the depth of Wearing’s scholarship is admirable.” Heidi Maier.
Bernard Shaw and Nancy Astor:

“What a splendid sequence of letters . . . The pertinent and concise annotations–extremely well done by J. P. Wearing-resemble lively stage directions. . . . Wearing’s annotations are so thorough he notes that Violet Pond is interviewed in the supplement to the DVD edition of an otherwise abysmally bad film, Gosford Park.”- John A. Bertolini, English Literature in Transition.
“Wearing’s fine introduction offers a balanced assessment of the Shaw/Astor relationship, his headnotes provide the necessary sociopolitical context, and his annotations are scrupulously researched . . . Although only glimpses of [her] paradoxical temperament emerge in Astor’s few surviving letters to Shaw (who may have destroyed the others himself), Wearing skillfully completes her portrait from biographies and autobiographies, diaries and letters, personal accounts by Astor family members (in particular her niece, actress Joyce Grenfell), and other sources. One is left with the impression that if Shaw did not succeed in outrunning his feminine tornado, it was not through lack of will, but rather because he was drawn to a ‘vigor, vitality, and cheek’ (Shavian trademarks!) that left him ‘far from indifferent.'”-Michel W. Pharand, SHAW The Annual of Bernard Shaw Studies.

The London Stage: A Calendar of Plays and Players:
“If nothing else, these books prove that London was, is, and always will be the theatre capital of the world. They also represent a mind-boggling amount of research by their author, for whom I have nothing but praise and admiration…no one interested in theatre history can be without these volumes. . . . various indexes provide for easy access…Anyone researching the career of a film personality who made occasional British stage appearances cannot afford to be without this volume- and, of course, it is an absolute “must” for students and scholars of the theater. “– CLASSIC IMAGES

“…a major reference source. “– ARBA

“Scrupulous and superb. “– BALLET REVIEW

“Wearing’s calendars are important contributions to scholarship, providing the raw material for work in social and cultural history…Good scholarship and good browsing for all. “– CHOICE

“…so chocked full of information American performing arts researchers should be aware of it even if they think the London stage has nothing to do with their work. The cultural link between New York and London is so strong, the exchange of performers and productions so common, little else needs to be written about it…monumental ongoing series is one of the best examples I can point to of how modern theatrical research should be done. There’s no better source for the London Stage… “– THE BIG REEL

“Future editors and theatre historians will find an indispensable reference work in… The London Stage…”– THE YEAR’S WORK IN ENGLISH STUDIES

“…Remarkably complete and easy to use…. A rich source of factual information…A fascinating overview of a decade’s theatrical activity. “– THEATRE SURVEY

“…a major reference work for our century. . . . Wearing’s latest addition shows no signs of faltering. His extraordinary project is quietly turning into a major reference work for our century…. It is inconceivable that the entire series… will not be on the shelves of college and university reference rooms. “– LITERARY RESEARCH
“The historian of taste will find a vast reservoir of raw data here. The theatre historian has been given the freedom of a decade, and will know how to use it. It remains for the reviewer only to applaud the encyclopedic industry of Dr. Wearing and the resourcefulness with which he has tackled a problem whose scale is so vast. And now we can look forward to the 1930’s. “– COMPARATIVE DRAMA

“Provides a wealth of detail…Should be purchased for in-depth theater or English literature collections. “– REFERENCE BOOKS BULLETIN

“This installment covers a very fertile decade of the theater…Wearing’s series is an essential tool for scholarly study of British theater. “– WILSON LIBRARY BULLETIN

G.B. Shaw: An Annotated Bibliography of Writings About Him:

“For the long period it covers, G. B. Shaw is the prime source of published material on Shaw, from major books to hundreds upon hundreds of one- or two-page notices and reviews in several languages. Its chronological arrangement, combined with the scope of its coverage and its annotations, give it the enduring quality of being the very best research tool for tracing the evolution of critical and popular reactions to Shaw and his plays . . . G. B. Shaw is a vast storehouse of references to the full range of Shaw material (except for works by Shaw).”-Charles A. Carpenter, SHAW The Annual of Bernard Shaw Studies