Behind the Scenes with Edwin Booth

By Katherine Molony Goodale | Go to book overview

CHAPTER II
MY FIRST BOOTH REHEARSAL

THE first rehearsal was called about ten days before the Buffalo opening, September 13, 1886. It was in New York at the Academy of Music, and for eleven o'clock. Obedient to Mr. Barrett's law, come down from the ancients -- ten minutes' grace to allow for difference in watches and town clocks on the first morning, but never afterward -- I was prompt. I walked on air to the stage door, one hour ahead of time; but it was the stage door of the Star Theatre where Lawrence Barrett was playing. All at once the thought of the Booth Company over at the Academy made me shy. Here was home -- in the Barrett Company -- and I must touch earth on this stage.

There was some one else walking on air this morning. Mr. Barrett, the veteran, was even earlier than the youngest of his company. He was in high spirits! His dream was come true with this hour! His future was solid! No more worries; big business sure; debts paid. But the happy laugh of his greeting told a story deeper than the business side of his partnership with Edwin Booth. An equally profitable association, with a drawing foreign star, had been of the mind for him; the one with Edwin Booth was of the heart.

It meant something for the 'Eminent Tragedian' to step into second place, which he must do next season in all things, and in some for even this present one. He

-7-

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