Julia Marlowe, Her Life and Art

By Charles Edward Russell; John Davis Batchelder Collection (Library of Congress) | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XIII
A STRUGGLE FOR PLAIDS

TWO new plays of unusual interest had been decided upon for the next season, that of 1896-1897. Mr. Barron, the scholarly critic of the Chicago Inter Ocean had made for her a dramatization of George Eliot's "Romola" and she had determined to bring out the tragedy by Francois Coppée that in French is called, "Les Jacobites," but to which she gave the name "For Bonnie Prince Charlie." It is the story of 1745 and the unsuccessful venture of the Young Pretender. For "Romola" she wished to go to Florence to get the background and atmosphere. The tour of Italy in midsummer was trying and exhausting, but she obtained the material she desired and came home full of enthusiasm about the season's work.

Rehearsals began early in Milwaukee, where the first performance of "Romola" took place on September 7 at the Davidson Theater. Its reception then and afterward was not too tropical. It may be doubted if "Romola" could ever be made in all ways effective on the stage. Mr. Barron's version was criticized as overwordy and under-actioned, but

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