Thomas Betterton: The Greatest Actor of the Restoration Stage (Cambridge Studies in Romantici)

Thomas Betterton: The Greatest Actor of the Restoration Stage (Cambridge Studies in Romantici)

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David Roberts
Cambridge University Press, 6/17/2010
EAN 9780521195843, ISBN10: 0521195845

Hardcover, 270 pages, 22.8 x 15.2 x 1.7 cm
Language: English

Restoration London's leading actor and theatre manager Thomas Betterton has not been the subject of a biography since 1891. He worked with all the best-known playwrights of his age and with the first generation of English actresses; he was intimately involved in the theatre's responses to politics, and became a friend of leading literary men such as Pope and Steele. His innovations in scenery and company management, and his association with the dramatic inheritance of Shakespeare, helped to change the culture of English theatre. David Roberts's entertaining study unearths new documents and draws fresh conclusions about this major but shadowy figure. It contextualizes key performances and examines Betterton's relationship to patrons, colleagues and family, as well as to significant historical moments and artefacts. The most substantial study available of any seventeenth-century actor, Thomas Betterton gives one of England's greatest performing artists his due on the tercentenary of his death.

1. Look my lord, it comes
Betterton's Hamlet
2. An obstinately shadowy Titan
Betterton in biography
3. An actor of London
early years, 1635–1659
4. A walk in the park
Betterton and the scene of comedy
5. In the Duke's Company, 1660–1663
6. Equal with the highest
Thomas Betterton and Henry Harris, 1663–1668
7. Actor management
running the Duke's Company
8. In the company of the Duke
Betterton and Catholic politics in the 1670s
9. Union
Betterton and theatrical monopoly, 1682–1695
10. Back to the future
breakaway to semi-retirement
11. Books and pictures
Betterton and the Chandos portrait