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Post Posted:: July 15th, 2009, 7:34 pm 
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I checked Google Books but all I could find was a 1962 version of it. It was performed so long ago... surely someone published the script before 1923? Maybe somebody can turn it up if so.

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Post Posted:: July 15th, 2009, 9:28 pm 

Joined: May 19th, 2009, 12:24 am
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Yes, Charley's Aunt was first published in 1892 (NY & London: Samuel French) and went through many reprints before 1923. It ought to be on the Internet somewhere. But I've searched repeatedly for some months (ever since seeing it mentioned in another LV thread), and I've never been able to find it.

Still, Charley isn't the only fish in the sea. The late 19th century was a golden age of outrageously funny side-splitting comedies, and quite a few of the best-loved are easily accessible. Pinero's The Magistrate, for instance. It can be found here. Like Charley, it's ROFL stuff and flawlessly plotted -- you can see the dreaded catastrophe slowly but relentlessly descending, with what Wodehouse used to call "the inevitability of Greek tragedy." The titles of the acts tell it all: "Act 1: The Family Skeleton; Act 2: It Leaves Its Cupboard; Act 3: It Crumbles." It's been filmed & televised several times (not counting all the films that have unofficially borrowed ideas from it). But I'm reasonably certain that it's never had an audio recording.

Another equally famous comedy from that general period, also readily available on the Internet, is Hobson's Choice. But I think that would be tougher than The Magistrate, because it really needs to be done in a specific dialect.

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Post Posted:: July 27th, 2009, 9:51 pm 

Joined: September 22nd, 2008, 9:35 pm
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Location: Vancouver
[DRAMA] The Mysterious Mother by Walpole - hammy drama

Though this is indisputably in the public domain, it's not on Project Gutenberg (you can find it at http://books.google.com/books?id=Qg8AtBM8zS0C). It's short, hammy and high-falutin', with lots of high drama and scenery-chewing, a third-rate Shakespearean tragedy that's just as fun to read out loud. AND there are only 12 characters (including the narrator for prologue and epilogue). What say?


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Post Posted:: July 28th, 2009, 1:07 am 
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That link takes me to The Castle of Otranto.

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Post Posted:: July 28th, 2009, 2:57 am 
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http://books.google.com/books?id=7f4kAAAAMAAJ
gives it for me

Anne

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Post Posted:: July 28th, 2009, 5:17 pm 

Joined: September 22nd, 2008, 9:35 pm
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Location: Vancouver
sorry--I wasn't clear. that edition contains several of Walpole's works, including "The Mysterious Mother". the stand-alone tMM I found on Google Books has old-fashioned s-typography (where they look like f at the beginning of words) which is a pain to read; I chose this one for ease of reading.


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Post Posted:: September 7th, 2009, 6:08 am 

Joined: November 24th, 2005, 3:54 am
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Location: Chigwell (North-East London, U.K.)
[PLAYS] Horace Holley - very short plays

I just found this collection of little playlets. Mainly two characters (plus a narrator), though there is one with five characters. The author died in 1960.

Here's the end of the first play ...

Quote:
THE VOICE

I have given you happiness?

THE WOMAN

Perfect happiness, Paul. I am happy, happier than I ever was before. But
before I go home from here for the last time, turn on the light, Paul,
that we may be to each other always as the wonder of this moment. For the
last time, Paul. Paul?... Paul? Where are you? Why don't you answer?...
_Paul!_ (_She turns on the light. It is a studio. At the piano, fallen
forward upon the keys, sits the body of a man. There is a revolver on the
floor beside him._) Paul!... _As I saw him!_ Is _this_ my happiness. Oh
God, _must_ I?



I don't know if any of the others are as interesting (I'm at work and can't spend too long on gutenberg).

Author: Horace Holley

Title: Read-Aloud Plays

Source: http://www.gutenberg.org/etext/15983

Peter

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Post Posted:: September 7th, 2009, 5:23 pm 

Joined: February 15th, 2009, 6:25 pm
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For early 20th Century plays, not exactly Maugham or Shaw, are they? :lol:
Archive has a bunch of Maugham's early plays; I wish PG/DP would provide more of them.

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Post Posted:: September 7th, 2009, 10:33 pm 

Joined: November 24th, 2005, 3:54 am
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I find it very difficult to judge the quality of literature, having had almost no background in formal criticism. Besides, I didn't read them through. At the time, I was looking for plays that might perhaps be done as a solo ... then that rather strange ending caught my eye.

Peter

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Post Posted:: January 18th, 2010, 10:50 pm 

Joined: January 17th, 2010, 9:18 pm
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Location: San Diego, CA, USA
I know you're currently in the middle of some Gilbert and Sullivan, but perhaps when that is done (or if anyone wants to start it earlier than that) I really think we should do The Beggar's Opera. Not only is it of immense historical importance as one of the first operettas/musicals in history, but it's also a raucous good time.

I've found a PD music score while browsing the Internet Archive. This is prepared from a performance at the Lyric Theatre, Hammersmith.

As for the text, it's available at both Gutenberg and Google Books.

Here are a few songs from the piece on Youtube to get an idea what it sounds like.

Ignore the title of this first one. The actual title is "If the Heart of a Man", which is set to the tune of "Would You Have a Young Virgin". In this performance, they sing the source song and then there's an instrumental interlude, and then they sing the John Gay text. "What Shall I Do To Show How Much I Love Her" is the source song (by Purcell) for a different number from The Beggar's Opera, "Virgins Are Like the Fair Flower in Its Lustre".

The second is the duet, "Were I Laid on Greenland's Coast", sung to the air "Over the Hills and Far Away", which is retained in this song as a lyric.

And just for fun, a performance of "Our Polly Is a Sad Slut". :lol:


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Post Posted:: January 19th, 2010, 1:47 am 
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Yes, it certainly sounds a lot of fun. Been suggested before here but the poster is no longer active here.

Maybe, one day, this will get off the ground.

Ruth

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Post Posted:: March 7th, 2010, 1:15 pm 

Joined: June 27th, 2007, 7:04 am
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Location: Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
It would be great if some American and other readers could take this on, especially as I’m based in Britain and the author died in 1974. :( As it was published in 1910, it is appropriate that this work be recorded in 2010, the hundredth anniversary of this work.

I'm not sure whether one should give the author's maiden name, Laura Clifford Barney, or her married name. The play was published in 1910, but she got married in 1911 and became Laura Dreyfus-Barney.

God’s Heroes – A Drama in Five Acts (1910) by Laura Dreyfus-Barney (1879-1974)

http://www.archive.org/details/godsherosplay00barnrich

*This work, while public domain in the USA, is not public domain in countries with laws that require author’s death + 70 years.*

Quote:
The central character of this play is Fátimih Baraghání (1814/1817 – 1852), also known by the titles of Táhirih (Arabic for “The Pure One”) and Qurratu’l-‘Ayn (Arabic for “Consolation of the Eyes”). She was an influential Iranian poet and Bábí heroine from the town of Qazvín. Her legacy is important to Bahá’ís, as well as supporters of women’s rights in Iran. In 1844, she became the seventeenth disciple or “Letter of the Living” of the Báb (1819-1850). As the only woman in this initial group of disciples, she is often compared to Mary Magdalene. Edward Granville Browne described her thus: “The appearance of such a woman as Qurratu’l-‘Ayn is in any country and any age a rare phenomenon, but in such a country as Persia it is a prodigy—nay, almost a miracle. Alike in virtue of her marvellous beauty, her rare intellectual gifts, her fervid eloquence her fearless devotion, and her glorious martyrdom, she stands forth incomparable and immortal amidst her countrywomen.” “I shall briefly say that this work portrays but a fragment of one of the most dramatic periods in history,” Barney writes. “and is but a limited presentation of the most vast philosophy yet known to man… My scene is laid in the distant Orient, in a country full of archaic and barbaric customs—the Persia of over half a century ago; but the aspirations of my heroes are of all ages and of all lands… Indulgent reader, I am aware that the only merit of my play is its subject; yet I hope, notwithstanding, to give you a glimpse of Eastern glory, and to awaken your interest in this great movement, the universal religion—Bahaism, which is today bringing peace and hope to expectant humanity.” Laura Clifford Barney (1879-1974), whose married name was Laura Dreyfus-Barney, was a leading American Bahá’í teacher and philanthropist. She was the daughter of Alice Pike Barney (1857-1931) an American painter based in Washington D.C. and sister of the playwrite, poet and novelist Natalie Clifford Barney (1876-1972). Barney was the compiler of the famous work known as “Some Answered Questions” from her interviews with ‘Abdu’l-Bahá. (Summary by Nicholas James Bridgewater)


QURRATU’L-‘AIN, afterwards named TAHIRA. Divinely human.

FATIMA………………………………QURRATU’L-‘AIN’S younger sister. Gentle and womanly.

LAILA………………………………….AKBAR’S wife. Delicate and broken-hearted.

DAIA…………………………………..Old nurse. Mistakes vice for virtue through habit and desire.

THE KALANTAR’S FIRST WIFE.

THE KALANTAR’S SECOND WIFE, and mother of the betrothed.

RUHANGIS…………………………The young betrothed of AKBAR.

A VISITOR.

TWO LITTLE BOYS……………QURRATU’L-‘AIN’S children.

SALIH……………………………….QURRATU’L-‘AIN’S father. Benevolent.

‘ALI………………………………….QURRATU’L-‘AIN’S uncle. Broad-minded.

TAQI…………………………….....QURRATU’L-‘AIN’S uncle and father-in-law. Arrogant, heedless.

‘ABDU’L-WAHAB……………..QURRATU’L-‘AIN’S brother. Upright, stern Muhammadan.

MUHAMMAD…………………..QURRATU’L-‘AIN’S husband and cousin. Worldly, good looking.

QUDDUS…………………………..Beautiful, aesthetic and virile.

HUSAIN…………………………….The KALANTAR’S son. Ardent, intelligent, and sympathetic.

AKBAR……………………………….Passionate, ambitious, resentful.

AMIN………………………………..Old family friend. Sincere, but narrow.

BASHIR………………………………Old negro servant. Devoted and pathetic.

SHIRAZI……………………………..Type of warlike follower of Muhammad.

HADI}…………………………………Usual type of Bábí. Brave, clear headed.
WALI}

A BABI………………………………...In name only, not in thought.

AHMAD……………………………….An inquiring and kindly mind.

NASIR………………………………….Negro eunuch. Silent personage.

Mullas, Babis, Soldiers, Servants, Musicians, Women, Handmaidens, and Dancer. (I don't think these have speaking roles - so there seem to be 24 roles. There will need to be a narrator, who could read the Introduction, "Historical Personages in the Play" and "Historical Events on which the Play is Based" sections at the end)

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Some Answered Questions.
The Promulgation of Universal Peace, Vol. I.
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Post Posted:: March 7th, 2010, 2:30 pm 

Joined: February 15th, 2009, 6:25 pm
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Yep, and we also ought to do this one for the kids:
The Blue Bird: A Fairy Play in Six Acts, by Maurice Maeterlinck

Plus these

Dark Lady of the Sonnets, by George Bernard Shaw (attention, AmateurOzmologist, wherever you are!)

Justice, by John Galsworthy

and

Theft - A Play In Four Acts, by Jack London


ohhhhh Glori-ahhhhhhnnnnn-aaaaaaaahhhh!

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Post Posted:: March 8th, 2010, 5:17 pm 

Joined: May 5th, 2009, 3:27 am
Posts: 319
Location: California
I think it would be cool to try a big, sprawling epic series of plays. It would take years to complete, though. Perhaps if we divided Back to Methuselah into six distinct books - the preface and the five plays - that could be more manageable. We might want to have the same readers for the voices that repeat in multiple plays.

On Gutenberg: http://www.gutenberg.org/etext/13084
Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Back_to_Methuselah

I just like that it goes all the way to the Year 31920. :shock:

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Post Posted:: March 8th, 2010, 9:35 pm 
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One of the big problems with Shaw is that you reduce your pool of available readers - he died 1950 which means its 10+ years before it becomes PD in EU countries - but this is no reason not to do him .

Anne

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