Friday, August 11, 2017

Mae West: Safe Gay Spaces

MAE WEST would have been so proud to know that her banned gay play "The Drag" [1927] was seen in London's West End on Monday, 10 July 2017.
• • "The Drag" — Reviewed by Ian Foster, Queer Theatre at the National — — Part 2
• • Writer:  Mae West
• • Stage Director:  Polly Stenham
• • Ian Foster noted:  To be brutally honest, "The Drag" isn’t the greatest play in the world. 
• • Ian Foster wrote: But what it does do is hold a fascinating mirror to early 20th century attitudes and how tolerance and intolerance existed side by side, then as now; the safe spaces gay men find in order to be their extravagantly true selves equally as timeless. And closet cases in marriages remain a sad truth, if not quite as dramatic as the son of a homophobic judge married to the daughter of a gay conversion therapist that we get here!
• • Ian Foster wrote:  Mae West revels in the scandal that the outing of her protagonist at one of his regular gay soirees causes, but she’s also sensitive to the realities that gay men — — many of whom she was friends with, advocate for, employer of — — faced in the world that scarce treated her much better. Polly Stenham has a real ear for West’s caustic wit (Tom Edden definitely slaying here) and you can see a) why she picked the play and b) how she could well turn this into a full production worth seeing.
• • Source: Review by Ian Foster: Queer Theatre at the National: 'The Drag'
• • This was Part 2. The first half  appeared yesterday. We hope you enjoyed it.
• • On Saturday, 11 August 2007 • •
• • The Brownsville, Texas Historical Association hosted a workshop that taught attendees to draw a caricature of Mae West (and other movie icons) on Saturday, 11 August 2007.
• • Overheard in Hollywood • •
• • After a detour in Las Vegas in 1956 to flank Mae West in an all-male musclebound chorus line, Joe Gold returned to Muscle Beach.
• • In Her Own Words • •
• • Mae West said:   "As long as the public supports my pictures, I'll fight to provide what the people want."  
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • A London daily mentioned Mae West.
• • A well-deserved tribute is paid to Herbert Read, who educated the English in the best of modern art, including Henry Moore; and there is a more quirky one to Edward James, who made famous Dali’s lobster telephone and the Mae West lips sofa.  . . .
• • Source: Article written by Paul Johnson for The Spectator; published on Saturday, 11 August 2012  
• • The Mae West Blog celebrates its 13th anniversary • •  
• • Thank you for reading, sending questions, and posting comments during these past eleven years. Not long ago, we entertained 3,497 visitors. And we reached a milestone recently when we completed 3,700 blog posts. Wow!   
• • By the Numbers • •
• • The Mae West Blog was started thirteen years ago in July 2004. You are reading the 3764th 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:


• • Photo:
• • Mae West • in 1927

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