Echoes of the Playhouse: Reminiscences of Some Past Glories of the English Stage

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G. P. Putnam's sons, 1895 - Actors - 331 pages
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Page 130 - twould a saint provoke," (Were the last words that poor Narcissa spoke ;} " No, let a charming chintz and Brussels lace Wrap my cold limbs, and shade my lifeless face : One would not, sure, be frightful when one's dead — And — Betty — give this cheek a little red.
Page 15 - True? representing some principal pieces of the reign of Henry the Eighth, which was set forth with many extraordinary circumstances of pomp and majesty, even to the matting of the stage; the knights of the order, with their Georges and Garter, the guards with their embroidered coats, and the like; sufficient, in truth, within a while to make greatness very familiar...
Page 67 - Barry, in characters of greatness, had a presence of elevated dignity ; her mien and motion superb, and gracefully majestic ; her voice full, clear, and strong, so that no violence of passion could be too much for her; and when distress or tenderness possessed her, she subsided into the most affecting melody and softness. In the art of exciting pity, she had a power beyond all the actresses I have yet seen, or what your imagination can conceive.
Page 214 - These encomiums warmed me, but did not overset me. I knew where I should have the pull, which was in the third act, and reserved myself accordingly. At this period I threw out all my fire, and as the contrasted passions of joy for the merchant's losses and grief for the elopement of Jessica open a fine field for an actor's powers, I had the good fortune to please beyond my warmest expectations.
Page 16 - King Henry making a mask at the Cardinal Wolsey's house, and certain cannons being shot off at his entry, some of the paper, or other stuff wherewith one of them was stopped, did light on the thatch...
Page 249 - The first time I was in company with Foote was at Fitzherbert's. Having no good opinion of the fellow, I was resolved not to be pleased ; and it is very difficult to please a man against his will. I went on eating my dinner pretty sullenlyj affecting not to mind him.
Page 163 - I have here said to the directors, as well as to the admirers, of our modern opera. As I was walking in the streets about a fortnight ago, I saw an ordinary fellow carrying a cage full of little birds upon his shoulder; and, as I was wondering with...
Page 77 - ... she crumbles it at once into her palm, and pours upon him her whole artillery of airs, eyes, and motion ; down goes her dainty, diving body, to the ground, as if she were sinking under the conscious load of her own attractions ; then launches into a flood of fine language and compliment, still playing her chest forward in fifty falls and risings, like a swan upon waving water...
Page 76 - Melantha is as finished an impertinent as ever fluttered in a drawing-room, and seems to contain the most complete system of female foppery that could possibly be crowded into the tortured form of a fine lady.
Page 57 - Pity it is that the momentary beauties flowing from an harmonious elocution cannot, like those of poetry, be their own record; that the animated graces of the player can live no longer than the instant breath and motion that presents them, or at best can but faintly glimmer through the memory or imperfect attestation of a few surviving spectators...

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