Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Heat Wave on Stage in Ogunquit

Reminiscent of our recent heat wave, Ruth Gordon remarks on a week’s engagement in Ogunquit, Maine where she appeared in “Saturday’s Children” in July 1936.

From her autobiography, “My Side” (Harper & Row, NY, 1976):

Hottest July day on record, read the headline in the Portland paper. The matinee had been a boiler, ladies sweated, fanned, sweated. On stage, we sweated.

Ah, those simpler, more rugged days, or How Air Conditioning Has Changed Theatre.

Photographs of the signboard outside the playhouse taking in the 1960s, ‘70s and ‘80s plainly stating the theater is AIR CONDITIONED, under Elaine Cancilla starring in “Can Can”, and Michael Constantine ahd Lawrence Pressman staring in “A Walk in the Woods” and “Yes, There Were Giants” with Kitty Carlisle, John Raitt and Jo Sullivan. You can find these, and a marvelous historical retrospective, in the excellent book “The Ogunquit Playhouse: 75 Years” by Carole Lee Carroll, Bunny Hart, and Susan Day Meffert (Back Channel Press, Portsmouth, New Hampshire, 2007).

Ruth Gordon also appeared in this play at the Cape Playhouse in August 1935, see this previous blog post.

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