Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Mae West: March 1927

During the first two weeks in March 1927, MAE WEST was starring in the courtroom on Sixth Avenue by day — — and starring in her stage play on Broadway every evening.
• • On 15 February 1927, Mae West's obscenity trial officially began.
• • Police inspector James Bolan was called as a witness for the prosecution in West Side Special Sessions Court. "He produced a sheaf of yellow paper, adjusted his eyeglasses and read in a solemn tone that suggested a church service," went one newspaper account of the courtroom's activities published on 16 February 1927. "The inspector's lean, grave face ministered to the effect."
• • At the beginning of her trial, Mae West was still shuttling back and forth from Jefferson Market Court on Sixth Avenue in the daytime to Daly's 63rd Street Theatre in the evening to perform onstage in "Sex" — — eight times a week — — as usual. But there was nothing "usual" about this.
• • "Playing the publicity angle for all it was worth, the producers and the cast of 'Sex' applied for, and were granted, a jury trial instead of a trial before three judges in Special Session," wrote Emily Wortis Leider in Becoming Mae West. "In early March (1927) the grand jury returned an indictment against the management and part of the cast. Mae West and the other indicted cast members entered their plea: Not guilty."
• • Mae West's popularity was undiminished by the trial. During the same week as the police raid, the junior promenade committee of the Washington Square College of New York University invited the actress to attend their prom. The coeds did stop short of bestowing the title "Prom Girl" on the Brooklyn bombshell — — an honor accorded each year to only one girl among all those present — — insisted the student administration.

• • Come up and see Mae every day online: http://MaeWest.blogspot.com/
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• • Photo: • • Mae West • • in court on 3 March 1927 • •
• • Feed — — http://feeds2.feedburner.com/MaeWest
Mae West.

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