PHILADELPHIA THEATER HISTORY WALKING TOUR: OCTOBER 23rd!!! . . . SEE BLOG PAGE FOR DETAILS

Blog Posts: Commentary and Images for Every Episode

Above, print of Louisa Lane in Twelve Absolutely, 1828. (Collection of the Harry Ransom Center, University of Texas, Austin)Below, an image of the silver medal that Edwin Forrest presented to little Louisa after she acted the role of his son in…

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As promised, here are the details of the FIRST EVER Adventures in Theater History Walking Tour!!!I will personally be leading a walking tour along the streets of Philadelphia on Saturday, October 23rd, starting at 9 am. If all goes according to plan…

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Above, Fanny Kemble reads Shakespeare aloud at the St. James Theatre in London - from the Illustrated London News, August 10th, 1850. As we detail in the podcast episode, becoming a public 'reader' of Shakespeare's plays gave Fanny both an independe…

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Above, the three portraits of Fanny Kemble by painter Thomas Sully at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. Sully was eventually to paint Kemble eleven different times, and also painted a portrait of her father Charles Kemble. The artist was kn…

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Above:  The residents of the Edwin Forrest Home for Actors, sitting in the front entrance hall on Parkway Avenue in West Philadelphia, 1960. The photo was taken by historian Richard Moody, for his book Edwin Forrest, First Star of the American …

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Above, a montage of Edwin Forrest, as himself, and as the three roles he commissioned and made his own: Spartacus, Metamora, and Jack Cade.Below: Three paintings of Forrest as Metamora, from different stages of his career. The first (artist unknown)…

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Above Left: Edwin Forrest as Rolla in Pizzaro, in a black-and-white photo of the portrait by John B. Neagle (1796-1865). Above Right: Engraving of the Neagle portrait by A.R. Durand, commissioned by F. Wemyss. Pizzaro was a play adapted from …

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Above, a poster advertising the production Ranch 10, a Western drama by Harry Meredith playing at the Arch Street Theatre in Philadelphia during November of 1883. The vividness of the print makes the onstage fire  the selling point of the …

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Above, a hand-colored etching from 1811 by Denis Dighton. It depicts "Mrs. H. Johnson" (Nanette Johnson, née Parker) as 'Zorilda' in the melodrama of Timour the Tartar (Collection of the National Portrait Gallery, London). Alongside it is som…

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Above: "George Frederick Cooke as Richard III", by Thomas Sully (1811). Collection of the Philadelphia Academy of the Fine Arts. Visiting this painting again, it strikes me more than ever how the viewer is actually placed as if they were in the acti…

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