Pub. price: $26.95
John Gielgud's Notes from the Gods
Playgoing in the Twenties
Publisher: Consortium Book Sales & Dist Published: Mar 1 1995 Weight: 0.70lbs. Height: 8.75" Width: 5.75" Depth: 0.75" Language: English
Published in celebration of Sir John Gielgud's 90th birthday, this fascinating fragment of autobiography offers nostalgic glimpses into the vanished world of the theatrical twenties - newly overlaid with Gielgud's present-day comments on his younger years.
As a drama student in his teens at RADA and as a tyro actor in his twenties, Gielgud was a passionate playgoer, seeing everything of note in the London theatre - ballet, revue and melodrama as well as straight plays. He attended the first ever productions of Shaw, Galsworthy, Coward and saw all the leading players of his day, Sybil Thorndike, Edith Evans, Ivor Novello, Gladys Cooper and their like. Moreover, he kept every single programme, carefully annotating them with characteristic frankness.
The whole hoard was guarded for many years by his mother, who eventually donated it to the Mander and Mitchenson Theatre Collection. This volume, compiled by the present Curator, offers a juicy selection of these youthful critiques - illustrated by page after page of stunning photographs from the actual productions that Gielgud saw.
Furthermore, in the course of the book's preparation for publication, Sir John has added his own present-day comments on the opinions and experiences of his younger self.