CRAIG, Edward Gordon, letters, autographs, documents, manuscripts

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The image is of the fourth page only.

CRAIG, Edward Gordon (1872-1966). Artist and stage-designer. Son of Ellen Terry.
Corrected typescript of an article Play-making: Goethe's "Faust", 4½ pages 4to, the last page signed in ink and dated 1932. The last page is glued to an album leaf with disfigurement from the glue-stain. There are a few corrections or additions to each of the pages.
'... This "Faust" of Goethe's is all very well, but it is not a good play when it comes to acting it. Therefore, if automatically treated by automatic actors, it will become a bore - in fact, it won't move. If it has to be interpreted, it will bother the good actor so much, as he tries to get his effects, that he will wreck the piece scene by scene. He will hesitate where Goethe hesitates; he will bore us with the long speeches - for, like Shakespeare's long speeches, Goethe's are often tedious, though very meaty as talk. If it is to be held as a good stage play, this version of the legend, which Goethe took about forty years to write, needs to be rewritten; and there is only one man who could do it over again, and that is Goethe - so it cannot be rewritten. ...'
Craig continues his theme by suggesting that Lear, Macbeth and Hamlet need to be 'reconstructed as actable plays'before reverting to his analysis of 'Faust':
'... "Lear" is a muddle almost from the start; "Macbeth", beginning better, for all that takes a course which reminds one of a bicycle's with a beginner on it, and its last act is a desperate problem for the stage to tackle: "Hamlet", spite of long speeches, gets up to the end of act 3 well enough. Act 4 tumbles it down, and with act 5 the producer, the players and the audience all have to make a Herculean effort to recover the lost ground. ...'

[No: 20204]


The image is of the fourth page only.


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