The World of Ruth Draper: Portrait of an Actress by Dorothy Warren (Hardback, 1999)
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About this product
- DescriptionThe World of Ruth Draper: A Portrait of an Actress captures the life of the internationally acclaimed mologist and the familial, social, and theatrical worlds in which she lived from the late nineteenth century to the mid-1950s. Dorothy Warren draws on correspondence with family and friends, theatrical reviews, personal interviews, and her own long relationship with Ruth Draper in crafting this biography.Born in New York City in 1884, Ruth Draper began giving mologues at private parties and schools at the age of twenty-six and made her professional debut in 1920 at London's AEolian Hall. In charting the course of Draper's impressive career, Warren follows her performances on stages around the world, including private recitals for Sarah Bernhardt, Eleora Duse, and the royal families of Britain, Spain, and Belgium. Warren also devotes a significant discussion to Draper's relationship with Lauro de Bosis, the Italian poet and political activist whose 1931 disappearance while dropping anti-Fascist pamphlets over Rome remains unexplained. Draper's long stage reign ended when she died in her sleep following a performance in New York City in December 1956.Ruth Draper's specialty was the mologue, a dramatic composition for a single performer evoking other characters upon the stage. She had in her repertoire sixty dramatic sketches featuring fifty-two characters whom she performed, as well as 316 others whom she evoked during the course of the sketches. Some of her better-kwn sketches were Opening the Bazaar, Vive La France1940, The Scottish Immigrant, The Actress, and In County Kerry. Draper's unique quality was her ability to project an illusion, to evoke upon the stage the characters with whom she conversed and interacted. Lynn Fontanne said of this faculty of Draper's: There is the flavor of parlor magic in itsomething of conjuring. Bernard Levin, writing in the Times of London on April 4, 1988, recalls Draper's talent for evocation as truly hallucinating and adds, Before the curtain came down, real hallucination had set in and we could see on the stage a crowd of people who were t there! Eleora Duse declared, Ruth Draper is theater.
- Author BiographyDorothy Warren, a fifth-generation New Yorker, graduated from Miss Spence's School in 1925 and grew up with many associations in Ruth Draper's world. After working in business and on various charitable projects, she has devoted her retirement to photography and biography.
- Author(s)Dorothy Warren
- PublisherSouthern Illinois University Press
- Date of Publication31/12/1999
- SubjectBiography: The Arts
- Place of PublicationCarbondale
- Country of PublicationUnited States
- ImprintSouthern Illinois University Press
- Content Note23 b&w illustrations
- Weight449 g
- Width152 mm
- Height229 mm
- Spine18 mm
- Foreword byHelen Hayes
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