A play by MAE WEST will have a free reading this month in lower Manhattan.
• • On Her Shoulders will present a free staged reading of "Sex" by Mae West, directed by Aneesha Kudtarkar on Wednesday, 18 June 2014. Doors open at 6:30pm. The Play in Context, which situates the script in its historical time and place, kicks off the evening at 6:45pm with an Introduction by dramaturg Celia Braxton. Running time, including a post-performance talk-back is 2.5 hours.
• • The performance will be held at The New School, Wollman Hall, 65 West 11th Street.
• • R.S.V.P. to OnHerShouldersReservations (at) gmail (dot) com.
• • Tell them you heard about it on the Mae West Blog.
• • On Thursday, 5 June 1952 • •
• • "Mae West to Open Summer Theatre" was the headline on Thursday, 5 June 1952 in a New Jersey newspaper. Herbert Kenwith was announcing the world premiere of "Sextette," a play written by Frances Hope and adapted by the movie queen.
• • Source: Article: "Mae West to Open Summer Theatre" (on page 4) of the Raritan Township and Fords Beacon, published on Thursday, 5 June 1952.
• • On Thursday, 5 June 1975 • •
• • Stanley Musgrove's Log dated for Thursday, 5 June 1975 recalled Mae West explaining that her own method of birth control was a silk sponge tied to a string. Mae also claimed she taught this barrier method to Fanny Brice who, until then, had several abortions. An odd conversation topic perhaps during June 1975, when Mae was 81, but there you have it.
• • Overheard in Hollywood • •
• • Everything Miss Mae West wears or sponsors is immediately seized upon by Europe's smartest women," said Victor Stiebel, famous London designer. And he frankly stated that having met his style-revolutionizer should and would increase his standing in the designing world.
• • In Her Own Words • •
• • Mae West said: "He who hesitates is last."
• • Mae West said: "I generally avoid temptation unless I can't resist it."
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • Video Age reviewed a book about Mae West.
• • "Sexy Mae wiggles her way into history" • •
• • "Becoming Mae West" • •
• • Emily Wortis Leider's "Becoming Mae West" (Farrar Straus Giroux, 431 pp.) would have been better titled "Being Mae West." For the heroine of this somewhat distant biography seems to exist in a determined present tense. Mae West is. Even during her early career in vaudeville, she bears a finished personality, and it is that carries her through a career that climaxes on screen, with films like She Done Him Wrong and I'm No Angel. She forges a trail for herself, with her own sensuality, wit and earthy aggressiveness as her only compass points.
• • West, a keen and devoted self-observer, was aware of this phenomenon. In a Philadelphia vaudeville appearance, she sang a song called "I've Got a Style All My Own" and then told the audience that "It isn't what you do, it's how you do it." She was a member of that club of celebrities who are famous less for the strength of a particular talent — — singing, dancing, acting — — than for an ineffable quality basic to themselves.
• • West hit vaudeville stages in the decade just before the Roaring 1920s, at a time when, as one journalist put it, "sex o'clock" was dawning in America. West's shimmy dances and innuendo fit in perfectly, according to the biographer, with this climate of (fettered) sexiness. A certain subtlety crept into West's act because she was, even at this early stage, subjected to censorship by the managers of the Keith circuit, a censorship that prefigured later problems in the movie phase of her career. Objection to the words she could say and the lyrics she could sing encouraged a tendency toward hidden humor and the use of body language. . . .
• • Source: Review for Video Age International, Vol. 18 Nbr. 5; published in June 1998
• • By the Numbers • •
• • The Mae West Blog was started nine years ago in July 2004. You are reading the 2929th blog post.
Unlike many blogs, which draw
• • Photo: • • Mae West • • in 1926 • •
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