Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Mae West: Major Sex

The British can’t get enough of MAE WEST. Emily Hutt’s 50-minute cabaret style “tell all” on Mae West was offered on April 15th at a small jazz club and starred Bella Bevan. Though the short-lived show is over, here is a review. This is Part 2.
• • Better Than Sex: The Story of Mae West • •
• • Mae West remained a major sex symbol • •
• • Terry Eastham wrote:  For a start, Mae was so much more than an actress from the 1930s. In fact, she was a singer, playwright, screenwriter, comedian whose entertainment career spanned seven decades and, even in her later years, remained a major sex symbol. Over the course of the show – written and directed by Emily Hutt – Mae West, in her broad New York accent, tells us of her first step into the entertainment limelight at a church social when she was five years old. This led to her first Vaudeville performance.
• • Terry Eastham wrote: We follow Mae West through the ups and downs of her theatrical life and the discovery that a combination of censorship and sex would make her career. Thrown into jail in 1927 for “corrupting the morals of youth” because of the complaints made against the play she wrote and directed called, not surprisingly “Sex.”
• • Text, Songs, Snippets • • . . .
• • This review will be continued on the next post.
• • Source: London Theatre1; published on Wednesday, 17 April 2019.
• • On Saturday, 14 May 1927 in Collier's • •
• • After Mae's arrest in 1927, Booth Tarkington was commissioned to write an article — — and "When Is It Dirt?" [published in Collier's, The National Weekly, on Saturday, 14 May 1927] discussed the issue of censorship and government intervention.
• • An author himself, Booth Tarkington never champions the rights of the censors, of course, in his thoughtful essay.  Though Mae's name is not mentioned in his piece, the magazine page was designed around a huge photo of Mae, looking very annoyed, in a courtroom. That tricorn hat is quite Napoleonic, is it not?
• • The stage play "Courting Mae West" dramatizes the trial in New York City that put Mae West on the map.
• • Overheard in Hollywood • •
• • Mae West's plans for a vacation trip have been blasted by a Paramount notice that she must be ready to start on her next picture about the middle of July.  Meanwhile, she must help get the screenplay in shape.  
• • In Her Own Words • •
• • Mae West said: "Nothing would please me more than that a guy would come along and write a play that I could really put over."
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • An article on the annual Met Gala mentioned Mae West.
• • Benjamin Moser wrote: Susan Sontag patiently explains why Jean Cocteau is camp but not Gide; Strauss but not Wagner. Caravaggio and “much of Mozart” are grouped, in her ranking, with Jayne Mansfield and Bette Davis; John Ruskin effortlessly sidles up alongside Mae West.
• • Benjamin Moser wrote: The true “aristocrats of taste,” she wrote, were homosexuals, whose “aestheticism and irony,” alongside “Jewish moral seriousness,” made up the modern sensibility. …
• • Source: Town and Country; published on Sunday, 5 May 2019
• • The evolution of 2 Mae West plays that keep her memory alive • • 
• • A discussion with Mae West playwright LindaAnn LoSchiavo — — 
• • http://lideamagazine.com/renaissance-woman-new-york-city-interview-lindaann-loschiavo/
• • The Mae West Blog celebrates its 14th anniversary • •  
• • Thank you for reading, sending questions, and posting comments during these past fourteen years. Not long ago, we entertained 3,497 visitors. And we reached a milestone recently when we completed 4,200 blog posts. Wow!  
• • By the Numbers • •
• • The Mae West Blog was started fourteen years ago in July 2004. You are reading the 4212th 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 • in Collier's in 1927

• • Feed — — http://feeds2.feedburner.com/MaeWest
  Mae West

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