Monday, August 26, 2013

Mae West: Kissed by Critics

Since "Diamond Lil" was a successful vehicle for MAE WEST, why hasn’t the script been produced since 1951?
• • Today's theatrical producers might have realized that the length of Mae's "melodrama of the underworld" is prohibitive (3 hours), the cast size is enormous (33 actors), and the third act is screwy. Those obstacles, however, have motivated other pen-smiths to seek a solution.
• • Staying faithful to the gritty themes in the novel, LindaAnn Loschiavo trimmed the work to 85 minutes for a cast of eight.
• • See it in September! • •
• • Actress Darlene Violette and the wonderful cast who brought the Bowery denizens and Suicide Hall’s ne’er-do-wells to life will return in “Diamond Lil” for two 7 o’clock performances at Don’t Tell Mama [343 W. 46th Street] on Sunday September 15th and 22nd.  Come up and see for yourself.
• • Read a Review of "Diamond Lil" • •
• • L'Idea Magazine's editors attended four times and had many things to say about the production. Here's the link: http://www.lideamagazine.com/usa-still-entertaining-mae-wests-diamond-lil-makes-new-fans-in-new-york-city/
• • "Diamond Lil" in August 2013 in Manhattan • • 
• • From a staging of "Diamond Lil" in August in NYC.  
• • PHOTO: Darlene Violette as Diamond Lil and Anthony DiCarlo as Captain Cummings. 
• • The Cast: Starring Darlene Violette as Diamond Lil, Queen of the Bowery and also featuring Sidney Myer, Anthony DiCarlo, Joanna Bonaro, Gary Napoli, Juan Sebastian Cortes, Kimmy Foskett, Jim Gallagher and live music by Brian McInnis  
• • New Adaptation: "Diamond Lil" by Mae West in a new adaptation for the stage by LindaAnn Loschiavo — and costumed in 1890s Bowery style.
• • Alfred Charles Kinsey [23 June 1894 — 25 August 1956] • •
• • "An Open Letter to Dr. Kinsey from Mae West" was printed in Cosmopolitan Magazine's March 1949 issue.
• • Alfred Charles Kinsey was an American biologist, professor of entomology and zoology, and a controversial sexologist. 
• • A heart ailment hastened his death. Kinsey died in Bloomington, Indiana on 25 August 1956.  He was 62.
• • On Friday, 26 August 1921 • •
• • "The Mimic World 1921" opened on 17 August 1921 and Jimmy Hussey's close friend, Jack Dempsey (another Irish-American) attended the premiere, and visited Mae West backstage after the show.
• • Clearly with Mae's approval and cooperation, Hussey penned the skit "The Trial of Shimmy Mae." Hussey himself played the judge as Mae demonstrated the shimmy in his topsy-turvy courtroom.
• • Variety tartly commented on 26 August 1921: "In a tent it would have been a riot."
• • On Tuesday, 26 August 1941 • •
• • On Tuesday, 26 August 1941, Mae sent a letter to Gary Cooper regarding San Quentin Prison. Mae wrote to him: "Warden Clinton Duffy is doing really wonderful work in prison administration. . . .  At this time Warden Duffy is preparing to award prizes to the men in prison who prove most worthy.  . . .  I am sure you will be glad to find room among your other donations for a contribution for the encouragement of the boys in the 'Big House' who have inspired such a lot of our screen material."
• • On Thursday, 26 August 1954 • •
• • According to vintage newspaper ads, the roving "Mae West Revue" opened their performance schedule in Reno, Nevada starting on Thursday, 26 August 1954. 
• • In Her Own Words • •
• • Mae West said: "I built up a loyal public in the theatre and I'm going to keep faith with my public in pictures."
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • The Detroit News mentioned Mae West, featured at the Temple Theatre in Detroit.
• • Their critic, objecting to the suggestive lyrics of "And Then," complained: "This woman is all that is coarse in Eva Tanguay without that player's ability. Yet the audience howled for more." ...     
• • Source: Review in Detroit News; published on Tuesday, 26 August 1913 
• • By the Numbers • • 
• • The Mae West Blog was started nine years ago in July 2004. You are reading the 2726th blog post. Unlike many blogs, which draw upon reprinted content from a newspaper or a magazine and/ or summaries, links, or photos, the mainstay of this blog is its fresh material focused on the life and career of Mae West, herself an American original.

• • Come up and see Mae every day online: http://MaeWest.blogspot.com/
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• • Photo:
• • Mae West Diamond Lil returned for Mae's birthday

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  Mae West

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