All posts tagged: The Swan(1923)

“Basil Rathbone Eulogizes the American Actress” – 1923

This article first appeared in THE BILLBOARD, November 1923. Just a few weeks later Rathbone would be taken to a party by Clifton Webb, where he would meet unemployed screenwriter “Ouida Bergere” (as she called herself). Click on pdf button to download a copy of the original article Basil Rathbone Eulogizes the American Actress The Billboard, November 24 1923 When our dramatic critic, in his review of “The Swan” defined Mr Basil Rathbone as “the leading man par excellence with the looks, bearing and acting capacity which should go with the genius” we decided that we had a clue worth following in our search for interesting personalities. But getting a seat for a performance of “The Swan” was like getting poor Humpty up a again. It was only due to the cancellation of a third balcony box reservation that we succeeded in viewing that ideal couple, the fair LeGallienne(sic) and the stalwart Rathbone. We gazed so long from our dizzy heights thru the lenses of an opera glass that we became dizzy and were obliged …

RATHBONE & LE GALLIENNE

The Q&A with Helen Sheehy about the Baz’s relationship, professional and otherwise, with Eva Le Gallienne continues to get a lot of feedback and there have been several interesting points raised in the comments. Opinion seems scattered over a wide spectrum between those who refuse to believe Rathbone would sleep with a lesbian and those who think he and Eva were lost loves for one another. I’m inclined to agree with Helen that the truth lies somewhere in the murky middle ground between. I think it’s probably pointless to refuse to believe Rathbone had a physical affair with Le Gallienne, when Le Gallienne herself and her friends all said he did. Likewise I think the chance they were ever in serious danger of marrying each other seems remote. Their affair only lasted for something like five or six months. Le Gallienne moved fairly swiftly on to other lovers, and Rathbone was already involved with Ouida Bergere when it began. So it’s important to remember this in order to keep it in proportion alongside other events …

Interview with Helen Sheehy

Today The Baz is talking to Helen Sheehy, author of Eva Le Gallienne: a Biography. Le Gallienne was Rathbone’s lover and Broadway co-star, yet her name is not even mentioned in his autobiography, and in consequence her role in his private life and artistic development will be entirely new to many of his admirers and indeed his past and future biographers! The Baz is very grateful to Helen for taking the time to talk about this neglected subject. It will certainly be a surprise to numbers of his longterm fans. TB: Let’s begin with you telling me a little bit about your book “Eva Le Gallienne: a Biography.” How you came to write it and what drew you to your subject. SHEEHY: When I finished my first biography, Margo: The Life and Theatre of Margo Jones, I looked around for another subject. Margo had single-handedly pioneered the resident theatre movement in this country – her legacy lives in the hundreds of non-profit theatres from coast to coast. So when I finished the book, I looked …