BEHIND THE CURTAIN;
The New Rehearsal.
THE farce, A Peep behind the Curtain; or The New Rehearsal, was first performed October 23, 1767, at the Drury-Lane playhouse. It served, the first evening, as the afterpiece to The London Merchant, or George Barnwell; before the month was out, it had been played after King Lear, As You Like It, and Othello. The Public Advertiser records twenty-one representations during the theatrical season of 1767-1768, one in the autumn of 1768, and nine during the year 1770. Genest records several representations at Drury-Lane in the season of 1778-1779; but since that time, the farce seems, in effect, to have been ignored.
In A Peep behind the Curtain, Garrick added one more to the already numerous satires cast in the mould of a theatrical rehearsal. He, who in 1761 had scored one of his most notable successes as an actor in the rôle of Bayes in Buckingham's The Rehearsal, was fully aware of the possibilities of this type; and his farce, though unequal to the Restoration play, furnishes a veritable link between that and the later 'rehearsal,' Sheridan's The Critic. All three pieces represent rehearsals on the stage of the Drury-Lane itself.
The text reprinted here is from the first edition, which appeared in November, 1767. The Public Advertiser for