The Struggle for a Free Stage in London

The Struggle for a Free Stage in London

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The Struggle for a Free Stage in London

The Struggle for a Free Stage in London

Read FREE!

Excerpt

On the 22d of August, 1843, royal sanction was given to the Theatre Regulation Bill, depriving the two patent theatres -- Drury Lane and Covent Garden -- of the monopoly they had possessed, for nearly two centuries, of playing Shakespeare and the national drama, and extending the privilege to the minor, or independent, theatres which had sprung up and multiplied in London in spite of the "inviolable rights" of the patentees. The monopoly had been bolstered up by special legislation, revivals of vagrant acts, chicanery, and evasions of every sort, in the face of a growing public demand for an unrestricted stage for the regular drama. The subject of this volume is the story of the long struggle to free London of the theatrical monopoly, a struggle which began almost within the lifetime of the second Charles himself, and culminated in the parliamentary act of 1843.

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