By O. Johnson
History, they are saying, has a grimy tongue. when it comes to colonial theatre in the US, what we all know approximately functionality has come from the detractors of theatre and never its manufacturers. but this doesn't account for the flourishing theatrical circuit validated among 1760 and 1776. This research explores the culture's social help of the theatre.
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Additional resources for Absence and Memory in Colonial American Theatre: Fiorelli’s Plaster
32 Absence and Memory William Eddis, a surveyor, recorded a few of the details: Our governor ... patronizes the American Company; and as their present place of exhibition is in a small scale, and inconveniently situated, a subscription by his example has been rapidly completed to erect a new theatre, on a commodious, if not an elegant plan. The manager is to deliver tickets for two seasons, to the amount of the respective subscriptions, and it is imagined, that the money which will be received at the doors from the non-subscribers will enable him to conduct the business without difficulty; and when the limited number of performances is completed, the entire property is to be vested in him.
He was married at the time, and his wife was also, and would remain, an actress. That Giffard was weary of the strolling life may suggest he had been at it for some time, longer than the company's residency in North Carolina. One brief but tantalizing record of Giffard comes to us from the previous year. On March 24, 1767, the actor William Verling married Elizabeth Conner in Norfolk, Virginia. Verling, a Norfolk native, had been recruited to fill out a scratch company that David Douglass had formed in Charleston in 1765-1766 when the bulk of the American Company were detained in Barbados.
Thomas Clarkson, another actor in the company, owed Alexander Finnie, as did Charles Bell, both of whom defaulted on their debts on June 18, 1753. 24 The full extent of the debts may not be known but collectively it represented a sufficient amount that a lien was placed on the playhouse against the company's return to Williamsburg for the fall court in October. "25 But the company did not return; they went to New York instead, where they encountered initial difficulties and could not or chose not to send back money.