Saturday, June 3, 2017

Saturday Night Radio Drama - George Bernard Shaw - Candida (as revised for radio)




George Bernard Shaw's play as broadcast on ABC Radio, 6 May 1951, with Katharine Cornell (OBC), Wesley Addy, Alfred Ryder, Brenda Forbes, Malcolm Keane & Oliver Cliff.

I have been trying to decide whether or not to post this for the past week.  Since reading a lot of Shaw's political-economic-social writing I have come to absolutely despise him and don't find his comedy to be funny.  

But it is interesting as one of, reportedly, two or possibly three examples of the acting of the legendary American stage actress Katherine Cornell that was recorded, another was also a radio play, Florence Nightingale, which I can't find.  As it says in the introduction Cornell absolutely refused to appear in movies - probably wise if artistic quality was her goal but which, of course, leaves not much but descriptions of her art- a stand she relaxed only once, when she appeared as herself in Stage Door Canteen.  I'd only heard her voice in the recording of some of Elizabeth Barrett Browning's sonnets and an excerpt from her signature role in The Barretts of Wimpole Street.  You can hear those on Youtube.  It's an acting style that sounds old fashioned to me but Shaw endorsed her as being the ideal Candida so who am I to second guess him? 

I'm posting this as a document of Cornell's acting.  You can take whatever you want to from it.  Shaw was a total pig and a proto-fascist if not Nazi and one of the most repulsive of the many repulsive British Fabians.   Speaking of that,  I can only guess what Shaw would have said about the propaganda for the sponsors of the show, U.S. Steel.  He died the year before this was produced.  

20 comments:



  1. "Since reading a lot of [G.B.] Shaw's political-economic-social writing I have
    come to absolutely despise him and don't find his comedy to be funny."

    Here's a clue, numbnuts. If we can only enjoy works of art by people who are admirable human beings, we'll have very little to entertain us on cold winter evenings.

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  2. If you were not so ignorant and lazy you would know that protesting someone asserting that expressing personal reservations about a playwright's work on account of their philosophical position, when the playwright in question is George Bernard Shaw, an author whose work is, by his own assertions motivated from his desire to express his philosophical position and to advocated it- that someone expressing their own reservations about those stated philosophical positions which are his real subject is doing something wrong, is profoundly stupid. That would be you.

    Considering Shaw's own theatrical and literary criticism, it's really dopey, as well.

    While there are few things in this world I wish so much to remain in total ignorance of as how you choose to entertain yourself on a cold winter evening, you seem to overlook several other facts, as well.

    I AM THE ONE WHO POSTED THE PLAY. I did so telling people they should take from it whatever they wanted to, I am the one who noted that Shaw, himself, would probably have found the sponsorship and the propaganda inserted in the middle of it objectionable - not to mention the cuts in the play which were made to put it on the radio.

    "Numbnuts" indeed. Your knowledge of Shaw and his work is probably limited to having watched My Fair Lady. I'll bet you never even read one of his plays.

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  3. I was a theater major, numbnuts. I acted in
    Shaw.

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    Replies
    1. Ha!

      You think I'm impressed by someone having been a theater major? I was a music major who once and only once ignored my adviser's advice "NEVER GET INVOLVED WITH THEATER PEOPLE". I know theater majors, on average they're about as intellectual as your average football player.

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  4. BTW -- Shaw described arts criticism as "prejudice made plausible." That's something you'll never achieve, obviously.

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    Replies
    1. Plausibility being found plausible is entirely dependent on the intelligence of the person reading it, intelligence is something you'll never achieve.

      You know Shaw said he hated Shakespeare, don't you. Oh, sorry, those last two words should be in reverse order.

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    2. You mean Shaw hated Francis Bacon, right?

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    3. No, he said "Shakespeare". I like to get my facts right. He might have been an Oxfordian for all I know.

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  5. Amazing how I could have acted in Shaw without reading him.

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    Replies
    1. If you had played in something by Shaw you'd have named the role you appeared in.

      Let me guess you appeared as "Crowd".

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  6. If I told you who I played you'd be too dishonest to post it.

    Go fuck youself. You're not just a liar you're a gutless liar.

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    Replies
    1. I'd probably be laughing too hard at the audacity of the lie.

      Let me guess. Kitty Warren?

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  7. Replies
    1. "Minor Barbara" would have been more plausible.

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  8. Replies
    1. And there it is, folks, Simp's high point of wit and originality. You read it here firs.... well, not that, actually.

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  9. Put the bottle down, Sparkles.

    Seriously -- I never thought I'd say this, but you were better off when you were just pretending to react to things I'd actually said without you being honest enough to post them.

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    Replies
    1. You really can't stand it that you're not the only one who tries to troll my blog, you don't want to have to share the attention with other people.

      As to anyone deciding who got the better of who, hey, you make it public and take your chances. That show biz.

      Delete