The Theatre of Robert Edmond Jones

The Theatre of Robert Edmond Jones

The Theatre of Robert Edmond Jones

The Theatre of Robert Edmond Jones

Excerpt

The first half of the twentieth century confronted the American theatre with a wide range of exceedingly complex problems: the assimilation of the European techniques of "The New Stagecraft," the development of native dramatists, the maturing of the motion picture as a separate medium, the encouragement of experimental and educational theatre, the search for new ways of fusing the visual and musical components of opera and ballet. To the solution of these problems-- and so many others!--Robert Edmond Jones contributed richly during the long and astonishing career which is the subject of this volume.

Mr. Young, whose active career as a theatre critic coincides so closely with the active career of Jones himself, contributes the first chapter--and most appropriately so, for no critic of the period understood more clearly the goals which Jones had set for himself. Mrs. Furber, friend of Jones and of the Jones family for many years, presents biographical material which has not previously been available and which will put an end to the legend of the untutored farm boy who wandered almost directly from the plow to the stage of the Plymouth Theatre. Mr. Simonson, as distinguished for his contributions to theatre history as for his work as a scenic artist, discusses the concept of theatre which Jones reveals in his published essays. Mr. Mielziner and Mr. Oenslager, whose brilliant careers began with apprenticeship to Jones, record their personal memories of Jones at work; Mr. Oenslager's chapter, with its various illustrations, will help to clarify for the uninitiated the process by which a scenic artist's initial ideas are developed . . .

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