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|Remembering Lynn Redgrave|
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 21.0190 Monday, 3 May 2010
From: John F. Andrews <
Lynn Redgrave, OBE
"Valiant to the end." Those were my wife's words when I told her this morning's unwelcome news about Lynn Redgrave. For other reactions to these sad tidings, see the links provided at www.redgrave.com <http://www.redgrave.com> .
Lynn was one of the most generous people that Jan and I ever had the privilege to meet. She endured far more than her share of adversity. But rather than burdening others with it, she became proverbial for the courage with which she persevered, and for the grace with which she remained focused on her commitments and on the friends and loved ones in her life.
We'll always be grateful for the opportunity to host two programs (one at the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, the other at the National Arts Club in New York) on the wrenching but inspirational photographic memoir that her daughter Annabel Clark produced about Lynn's struggle with breast cancer. And we'll long remember the care Lynn manifested, both then and later, in her efforts to ensure that Annabel and her talented siblings flourished.
It would be difficult to identify another arts professional who could match Lynn's depth, range, and versatility. For many of her admirers it was all but impossible to believe that the same actor could be inhabiting such diverse personalities as the ones we experienced in films like Georgy Girl, Shine, and Gods and Monsters. And how touching and penetrating Lynn was as she delved into her emotional, intellectual, and artistic heritage through theater scripts such as Shakespeare For My Father (an award-winning meditation that resulted from producer Janet Griffin's request for Lynn to deliver a few remarks at the Folger Shakespeare Library on Capitol Hill), The Mandrake Root, and Nightingale.
For anyone associated with the Shakespeare Guild, it would be hard to imagine the Gielgud Award without Lynn. Not only was she one of our most exemplary recipients of this laurel, in a spring 2003 Gramercy Park ceremony that became a moving testimony to the entire Redgrave-Kempson legacy. She was deeply involved in the honor from its inception (taking part in the inaugural presentation of the Golden Quill at the Folger in 1996, when she helped us bestow the trophy on Sir Ian McKellen) to its most recent presentations (bringing eloquent, witty congratulatory messages to such recipients as Christopher Plummer in 2006, Michael Kahn in 2007, and Patrick Stewart in 2008).
As we continue to draw sustenance from Lynn's beautiful journey, we extend heartfelt sympathy to the surviving members of her remarkable family, hoping that they will find consolation in all the warm memories they cherish from a genuinely noble spirit.
John F. Andrews
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