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Home :: Archive :: 2002 :: May ::
Re: Actor's Church
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 13.1279  Friday, 10 May 2002

[1]     From:   John D. Cox <
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        Date:   Thursday, 9 May 2002 11:01:29 -0400
        Subj:   Church as Theatrical Space

[2]     From:   Louis Scheeder <
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        Date:   Thursday, 9 May 2002 12:08:30 -0400 (EDT)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.1273 Re: Actor's Church

[3]     From:   Anthony Haigh <
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        Date:   Thursday, 9 May 2002 12:16:22 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.1273 Re: Actor's Church

[4]     From:   Ruth Ross <
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        Date:   Thursday, 09 May 2002 18:30:02 -0400
        Subj:   RE: SHK 13.1273 Re: Actor's Church


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           John D. Cox <
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Date:           Thursday, 9 May 2002 11:01:29 -0400
Subject:        Church as Theatrical Space

Regarding the theatrical use of churches, see John Wasson's essay, "The
English Church as Theatrical Space" in *A New History of Early English
Drama*, pp. 25-37.  Wasson argues that churches were major playing
spaces before the advent of permanent commercial theaters near London in
the late sixteenth century.

John Cox
Hope College

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Louis Scheeder <
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Date:           Thursday, 9 May 2002 12:08:30 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: 13.1273 Re: Actor's Church
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.1273 Re: Actor's Church

Here in New York there are several churches that are associated with
actors and performance.  There is a Roman Catholic Church in the theatre
district that has served as a spiritual haven for actors for many years
(St. Malachy's?)

And, perhaps more to the point, The Church of the Transfiguration ("The
Little Church Around the Corner") has "maintained an affectionate
relationship with people of the theatre since 1870."  This National
Landmark has been the home of The Episcopal Actors' Guild of America
since the inception of that organization in 1923.  The Guild bands
people of the theatre together with the Church and aids the sick, the
needy and the indigent of the theatrical profession without regard to
religious faith.  It generally provides grants in excess of $100,000 a
year to retired performers, career professionals, and performers with
AIDS.

Also, St. Mark's in The Bowery in the East Village is home to an array
of performance events, including the Poetry Project and Danspace.  It
also houses Richard Foreman's Ontological/Hysterical Theatre.

There are numerous others.

All best,
Louis

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Anthony Haigh <
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Date:           Thursday, 9 May 2002 12:16:22 -0400
Subject: 13.1273 Re: Actor's Church
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.1273 Re: Actor's Church

I recall reading - somewhere in the dim and distant past - that the
original rector of St. Paul's Covent Garden was something of a Puritan
and requested that Jones build something simple - akin to a barn.  Jones
is said to have responded "Sir, I will build you the grandest barn in
London!"

I have always assumed that it's designation as the Actors Church has
more to do with its proximity to Drury Lane.  Certainly many actors are
buried and memorialised there, including my own teacher - Rose Bruford.

Does anyone know the status of the church in Shoreditch where many of
the Lord Chamberlain's men are buried?  The last time I was there I was
saddened by its poor state of repair.  I was told that the graves of
Burbage and the rest were sealed in the crypt for health reasons - there
being many plague victims buried there.  However, English Heritage was
supposed to be taking an interest and hoped to restore the building and
provide access to the crypt.  Does anyone have any more up to date
information?

Cheers,
Tony Haigh

[4]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Ruth Ross <
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Date:           Thursday, 09 May 2002 18:30:02 -0400
Subject: 13.1273 Re: Actor's Church
Comment:        RE: SHK 13.1273 Re: Actor's Church

Did anyone think that the apostrophe in Actor's is misplaced? Given the
fact that the church is located in Covent Garden, the site of several
theaters, couldn't the appellation be the Actors' Church...a church
frequented by members of the acting profession? I think there is a
church near Broadway in NYC with that nickname.

Ruth Ross

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