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This blog makes liberal use of AB's journals, letters, travel notes, and other sources.

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Wednesday, 19 September 2012

Love in Liverpool

Friday, September 19th., Comarques.

"Sacred and Profane Love" was produced at the Playhouse, Liverpool, last Monday 15th, at 7.30.

The Liverpool Playhouse is a theatre in Williamson Square in the city of Liverpool. It originated in 1866 as a music hall, and developed into a repertory theatre. As such it nurtured the early careers of many actors and actresses, some of which went on to achieve national and international reputations. The present theatre was originally named the Star Music Hall. The theatre was improved in 1898 with a new auditorium and foyer, and electricity was installed. In 1911 the Liverpool Repertory Theatre Limited was established, and bought the theatre for £28,000. This made it the first repertory in Britain to own the freehold of a theatre. The theatre was renamed the Liverpool Repertory Theatre, and in 1916 renamed again, as the Liverpool Playhouse.

The audience laughed when Iris Hoey called out 'I cannot bear it' as the hero was playing the piano.

Iris Hoey, 1916

Iris Hoey (17 July 1885–13 May 1979) was a British actress in the first half of the twentieth century, both on stage and in movies. She studied for the stage at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art.
She married twice, first to Max Leeds, then the actor Cyril Raymond but divorced on both occasions. In 1923 by Cyril Raymond she had a son, John North Blagrave Raymond, who was born in Bristol.

True, the playing was appallingly bad. This ruined the first Act Sc. 1. Act 1 Sc.2 went perfectly. The hold of the play gradually increased on the audience, and at the close an emphatic success was undeniable. I took a call because I had to. Then I had to take a second call. A thing I never did before.

This play <http://archive.org/details/sacredandprofan01benngoog> is based on my book of the same title, and was later (1921) made into a film. Herewith a synopsis:

Elsie Ferguson, who played the role of Carlotta Peel on stage, also starred in the film. Carlotta's aunt (Helen Dunbar has kept her innocent of the facts of life, but then the girl meets pianist Emilie Diaz (Conrad Nagel), who is all-too willing to show them to her. On the night he seduces Carlotta, her aunt dies. Left on her own, Carlotta goes to London and becomes a famous author. Her publisher, Frank Ispenlove (Thomas Holding), falls in love with her. Unfortunately, there is also a Mrs. Ispenlove (Winifred Greenwood), so Carlotta rejects him, even after he has followed her to France. In misery, he commits suicide. Carlotta, meanwhile, finds Diaz in Paris. He has become an absinthe addict, and she sets out to regenerate him. With her help, he once again achieves renown as a pianist. Thus their profane love becomes sacred.

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