February 9, 2009 |
English poet John Keats was dying of tuberculosis when he wrote in 1820 to longtime love Fanny Brawne: " 'Tis certain I shall never recover if I am to be so long separate from you. " Keats was leaving soon for Italy, hoping to improve his health. "I cannot live without you," he declared, also warning the sometimes flirtatious Fanny not to write back "unless you can do it with a crystal conscience. " He died several months later, but his letter and love for Fanny live on this month at the Rosenbach Museum and Library in Rittenhouse Square.
February 6, 1991 |
The concept of Love Letters - tracing the relationship between a man and a woman over half a century by having two actors read the letters they exchange - doesn't sound all that fascinating, and if a playwright other than A.R. Gurney had written it, it might not be. Gurney is the preeminent theatrical authority on the WASP way of life, and part of the reason this play is such an engrossing affair is that the characters are set in that milieu, which...
October 22, 1990 |
Perhaps you've heard - more than 150 prominent actors and actresses have played the roles of Andrew Makepeace Ladd III and Melissa Gardner in A.R. Gurney's "Love Letters" since the play bowed at a reading in the New York Public Library in the spring of 1988. On that occasion, Gurney himself and an actress friend, Holland Taylor, sat in as the first Andy and Melissa. "Love Letters" subsequently played New Haven and off-Broadway. And now the producing team of Thomas Viertel, Steven Baruch and Richard Frankel, who specialize in small-scale productions ("Driving Miss Daisy," "Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune")
February 9, 1996 |
A romance blossoms, falters and endures through pages and pages of correspondence in A.R. Gurney's bittersweet comedy Love Letters, which is being presented this weekend in Doylestown Borough by the Bucks County Center for the Performing Arts. Bob Griffiths of Erwinna stars as Andrew, and Lelia Matthews of Lambertville, N.J., as Melissa in this two-character play, which follows the relationship from childhood until death. The letters reveal in part how Andrew allowed ambition to override his feelings for Melissa.
July 23, 1999 |
Suzanne Roberts had pretty much decided to give up acting when she was asked to play the role of Melissa Gardner in A.R. Gurney's hit play "Love Letters. " Roberts co-stars with Broadway actor Steven Bradbury in the show, which will be performed tonight and Saturday and Sunday nights at Plays and Players Theater, 1714 Delancey St. (Sunday is sold out.) She's 78 now, though she doesn't look it. On the other hand, she related, "I was appearing in the Delaware Theater Company's production of 'Skin of Our Teeth' in Wilmington last year and I found that remembering my lines was torture.
October 17, 1991 |
They're back. J.R. and Sue Ellen are in town this week, and once again they're falling in and out of love. This time, however, the territory in which their romance is played out is not the estates and board rooms of Dallas oil barons. Instead, they meet, mate and wrangle in the upper-class, WASP world of A.R. Gurney's Love Letters, which runs through Sunday at the Shubert Theater. Love Letters, now in its third Philadelphia run, is both simple and gimmicky. The simplicity lies in the staging: Its two characters sit side by side and read from a lifetime of correspondence that recounts their relationship.
January 21, 1993 |
As Valentine's Day approaches, thoughts turn to love. You know, the sentimental type. But what about forbidden love, unrequited love and ill-fated love? What about the flames of passion that are doused before the affair has a chance to blaze? In his play Love Letters, A.R. Gurney provides just this type of twist. A local production starring Michael Learned, who played Olivia on The Waltons, and Gavin MacLeod, captain of The Love Boat, will be presented Jan. 29 and 30 at the Keswick Theater in Glenside.
November 14, 1990 |
Andrew Makepeace Ladd III and Melissa Gardner, friends from childhood, took up their pens again last night at the Shubert Theater for a correspondence that makes for a lively, witty and literate evening in the theater. Eli Wallach is Andy Ladd, the square who grows up to be a U.S. senator. Mrs. Wallach - Anne Jackson - is the madcap Melissa, who spends a lifetime throwing spitballs at him through the agency of the U.S. mails. The play is Love Letters; the author, A.R. Gurney.
March 29, 2011
Before becoming a bride eight times over, Elizabeth Taylor was a 17-year-old starlet scribbling letters to her first fiance, charting on pale pink stationery his progression from her one-and-only to the one who got away. "I've never known this kind of love before - it's so perfect and complete - and mature," Taylor wrote to William Pawley on May 6, 1949. "I've never loved anyone in my life before one third as much as I love you - and I never will (well, as far as that goes - I'll never love anyone else - period)
May 20, 1986 |
Two love letters Edward Branch sent to a former girlfriend while he was awaiting trial for murder in the Detention Center helped convict him of voluntary manslaughter yesterday. Branch, 25, of 27th Street near Thompson, a construction worker, fatally stabbed Steven McCoy, 29, on Nov. 14, 1984, when McCoy rushed out of the home of the woman on 23rd Street near Columbia Avenue to stop Branch from harassing members of her family. McCoy, of Ellsworth Street near 25th, had been visiting friends at the woman's house when someone cut a piece of plastic that had been placed on the front window.