September, 2006 Newsletter
Dear Email Friends,
SYLVIA by A. R. Gurney, the popular and prolific American playwright, opened to a full house on 18 September. All of the audiences to date have enjoyed themselves thoroughly and expressed their appreciation as only the enthusiastic German audiences do. Our professional actors from London are always surprised at how many curtain calls they get at The English Theatre of Hamburg.
Which is the real Sylvia ?
A. R. Gurney is obviously confident that theatre audiences come prepared to use their imaginations. The main character, a dog named Sylvia, is played by an attractive young woman, Gabrille Meadows. But, amazingly, we accept her as a dog. Other characters talk to her as if she were human. But haven't we all done that with house pets? The only difference is that in this play the dog talks back.
A recent press clipping
. . . in Hamburg bellt, wedelt und spricht Gabrielle Meadows in einer tollen Mischung aus animalischem Menschen-Weibchen und hündischer Unterwürfigkeit. Dass Sylvia von einer attraktiven Blondine gespielt wird, macht das Stück zu einem verblüffenden Vexierspiel.
In 1989 we were fortunate to have this consumate English actor play the famous role of Davies in Harold Pinter's play, THE CARETAKER. Michael's name is well-known in theatre circles and among lovers of the theatre in England. He learned much from his mother, a well-known actress, who advised him, among other things, never to read reviews. Michael came to Hamburg not for the money, but because of the wonderful role we offered him. He could earn a lot more just playing a minor part in the West End, which is what he did when the run of THE CARETAKER came to an end. He invited the Hamburg directors into his home and gave them complimentary tickets to see him in a Ray Cooney farce which they enjoyed very much. Although he was a much sought-after and highly talented actor, Michael was humble and patient with actors who had less experience than he. Besides being an actor who was extraordinarily talented we may very well remember him mostly because he was a kind and gentle man who cared about the feelings of others.