Friday, January 29, 2016

Rafael Sabatini and Salmon


Making an excursion into memories of childhood is a temptation in old age although the experience is often painful because of all that is lost, never to be had again. Yet on a rare occasion something may be chanced upon that has a happy extension into the present. Such was the case when looking – after the lapse of decades – into a book which somehow escaped the Reaper. It is a dictionary whose associations will be my subject another day. It has 16 colour plates and as I scanned them I came across one which in childhood had no interest for me, but now made an instant connection with Rafael Sabatini the angler devoted to salmon fishing. (The newspapers were as ready to report news of his fishing as they were ready to report a new book from him.)



from the Daily Mail, 1935

And here is that plate, in which the non-angler who reads Rafael’s fishing stories and articles can see images of what are otherwise only words to seek via the internet!


Wednesday, January 27, 2016

ADDENDUM



Neither a play, a screenplay, nor a simple synopsis of a proposed play is THE TRAVELLER, by Rafael Sabatini. It is curious piece of writing, without a discernible date (so far) and most fortunately printed by George Locke in his publication, Rafael Sabatini: a Researcher’s Companion. For the most part it is like a synopsis, with the author’s asides regarding certain points which a producer might question; but it also breaks out frequently into dialogue and directions, with one additional surprise – a passage of blank verse for Cagliostro! It is hard to take this work seriously, yet it represents in Rafael’s life something approaching an obsession. This is where a journal or letters or reported conversation with a close friend would be such a treasure....

In Locke’s collection of Sabatini’s work there is more than one document which has to do with a commission to write a scenario for a film on Christopher Columbus. He was not asked for a script, only a scenario, but being Rafael he could not resist shifting from narrative into dialogue every now and again. It is sad to think of all this material known to exist yet out of reach of any researcher. As for the scenario, although Sydney and Muriel Box rejected it, it served Rafael as the foundation for his novel, COLUMBUS, and – mysteriously – bits of dialogue and other material turn up in the deadly dull film made by the Boxes. Rafael loved mysteries, and enjoyed being mysterious. Does he enjoy reserving something of himself hidden from us who have so diligently sought him?


Monday, January 25, 2016

Rafael Sabatini as Writer of Plays


Rafael Sabatini was an enthusiastic writer of plays and screenplays. But, on the evidence of a few plays read, he was not good at writing them. Perhaps his collaborations with three other experienced playwrights, all his friends, Henry Hamilton, Leon M. Lion, and J. Harold Terry, were better.

With the publication of my two-volume book, readers of Sabatini have gone from fast to feast, from knowing very little about an admired writer to knowing more than they could have expected. Perhaps some reader will be inspired to research Rafael Sabatini’s output of plays and screenplays; maybe to write a book on the subject. For such a reader here is all the data I collected, as a starting point:

RAFAEL SABATINI PLAYS – staged or not - & SCREENPLAYS

1903
Collaborates with actress STEPHANIE BARING: KUONI, THE JESTER, staged at the Grand Theatre, Luton, 12(?) June 1903 [the Lord Chamberlain’s seal on the script (Ms 243) is dated 15 June]
1904
THE SACRIFICE; written in February. No further data
1906
LOVE-AT-ARMS, a Comedy in Three Acts; commissioned by actress Constance Stuart; paid for on 20 Sept. 1908; nothing more known
1909
FUGITIVES, a one act play, sold 7 January 1910; staged at the Empire Theatre, Leicester Square, Kilburn, London, 26 June 1911
1910
Collaborates with HENRY HAMILTON: BARDELYS THE MAGNIFICENT, opened at the Theatre Royal, Birmingham, 29 August 1910, toured provincial theatres, closing at Hull in December 1910 [sic G Locke]; [typescript with G Locke £650]
1912
MILADY’S SECRET, written for Ethel Warwick (actress, 1882-1951), paid for on 25 July 1912; nothing more known
1913
Collaborates with FRANCIS R. PRYOR: THE SEA WOLF; paid for on account, 5 January 1915; nothing more known
1918
SECRET SERVICE and a variant, INTELLIGENCE, both taken from the short story INTELLIGENCE [ms/typescript of both with G Locke £445 for all three items]
1919
JOHANNA, a drama in three acts [ms with G Locke £1250], typed as THE SACRAMENT OF SHAME [with Harry Ransom Centre, U. of Texas]; failed at least one attempt to get it staged/ published
1920s
THE KISS OF JUDAS [ms with G Locke £445] – same as THE TYRANT. Charles L. Wagner wanted to produce it in 1925, with Arthur Edmund Carew in the role of Cesare.
1921
Collaborates with J.E. HAROLD TERRY: THE RATTLESNAKE, a romantic play, staged at the Theatre Royal, York, 4 November 1921; the Shaftesbury Theatre, London, 1 October 1922. See 1925 below for rewriting. [typescript with G Locke £335; copy of play at New York Public Library]
1923
SCARAMOUCHE, a romantic drama in four acts, staged at the Morosco Theatre, New York from 24 October 1923 to December; new (revised?) production at the King’s Theatre, Glasgow, 4 April 1927; the Garrick Theatre, London, 18 April 1927. [G Locke has 2 typescripts with playbills & RS’s sketches for sets etc. £2250 & £850]
1924
Collaborates with LEON M. LION: IN THE SNARE, (from the novel NOT the short story), staged at the Savoy Theatre, London, 4 July 1924
1925
THE TYRANT, a play in four acts, staged at the Theatre Royal, Birmingham; the New Theatre, London; new production at the Longacre Theatre, New York, 12 November 1930. Published in 1925 by Hutchinson & by Thomas Allen
1925
Rewrites with J.E. HAROLD TERRY: THE CAROLINIAN [see 1921 above], staged at the Bonstelle, Detroit on 5 October 1925; the Sam H. Harris, New York on 2 November 1925. [typescript with G Locke £225]
1928
Collaborates with F. Kinsey Peile on THE PROMISE; one matinee performance known on 6 March 1928 at the Scala Theatre, London, in aid of the Princess Louise Kensington Hospital for children.
1930s
Collaborates with HAROLD SIMPSON: THE BLACK SWAN, A Play in Three Acts. [typescript with G Locke for £850 – including story, The Head of Tom Leach] Nothing more known

SCREENPLAYS
1921
BLUFF from the story, The Blackmailer, produced by Hardy Film Company (Sam Hardy & Rafael Sabatini) for Gaumont
1922
THE RECOIL from the story, The Dream, produced by Hardy Film Company (Sam Hardy & Rafael Sabatini) for Stoll
1922
THE SCOURGE from the story the Scourge (film later titled Fortune’s Fool; story became novel also titled Fortune’s Fool), produced by Hardy Film Company (Sam Hardy & Rafael Sabatini)
1947
“film treatment” [sic Locke] of THE TAVERN KNIGHT by MILES MALLESON, with notes by RS [typescript with G Locke £125]

Bardelys the Magnificent
Theatre Royal, Birmingham, 29/8/1910, (toured provincial theatres, closing at Hull in December 1910)
Globe Theatre, London
Opening:
Feb 21 1911
Total Performances:
- [played all S matinees]
Closing:
- April 1911


Category: Romantic Play from Sabatini’s novel with the same title
Written by Henry Hamilton and Rafael Sabatini
Reviews in Shoreditch Observer, 4/3/11

Cast
Lewis Waller
Bardelys
Madge Titheridge
Roxalanne
Lottie Venne
Countess de Lavedan
William Haviland
Count de Castelroux
Ashton Pearce
Louis XIII

The Rattlesnake
Theatre Royal, York, 4/11/1921
Shaftesbury, London,
Opening:
Jan 10 1922
Total Performances:
22 [w W & S mat exc 11 Jan]
Closing:
Jan 28 1922


Category: Romantic Play
Produced by
Charles B. Cochran, Percy Hutchison, Leslie Fisher
Written by J. E. Harold Terry and Rafael Sabatini
Reviews in Illustrated London News 21/1/22, p 96; Observer 15/1/22, p 9; Saturday Review, 28/1/22, pp 87-88; Stage, 12/1/22, p 14; Sunday Times, 15/1/22, p 4; Times, 11/1/22, p 8

Cast
Major Sykes
Norman B. Cannon
Ralph Izard
Lawrence Anderson/Vincent Clive
Captain Davenant
Cecil Cameron
Colonel Harvey
F. G. Thurstans/Leonard Harris
Sir James Gaspard
Arthur Goullet
Captain Mandeville
Franklin Dyall
Andrew Carey
J. Fisher White
John Routledge
Edward O’Neill
William Moultrie
Aubrey Mather
Lord William Campbell
Jevan Brandon-Thomas
Harry Latimer
Milton Rosmer
Hannibal
H. Williams
Mr Trevor
John Skilton
Captain Lee
W. Douglas
Lieutenant Shubrick
John Dene
Ensign Laurens
Edward C. Benfield
Captain Shenston
Christopher Foster
Mrs Brewston
Carrie Unett
Mrs Ralph Izard
Lesley Winter
Lady Gaspard
Kate Carew
Myrtle Carey
Cathleen Nesbitt
Lady William Campbell
Eleanor Street

Scaramouche
Morosco Theatre, New York
Opening:
Oct 24, 1923
Total Performances:
61
Closing:
Dec 1 1923


Category: Play, Romance, Original, Broadway
Setting: The Breton Inn at Gavrillac, a barn near Guichen, the Feydeau Theatre at Nantes, and Mme. De Plougastel's Salon in Paris
Produced by Charles L. Wagner
Written by Rafael Sabatini

Cast
E. J. Ballantine 
Phillippe de Vilmorin 

Herbert Belmore 
Pasquariel 

Sidney Blackmer 
Andre Louis Moreau 

Mary Cecil 
The Duenna 

H. Cooper-Cliffe 
Florimond Binet 

William Crimans 
Lesarches 


Duroc 

Arthur De Langis 
Leandre 

Margalo Gillmore 
Aline De Kercadiou 

Percy Haswell 
Comtesse De Plougastel 

Knox Herold 
Pierrot 

Stanley Howlett 
Le Chapelier 

Allyn Morgan Joslyn 
Harlequin 

J. M. Kerrigan 
Polichinelle 

Louis Le Seuer 
Chevalier De Chabrillane 

Vivienne Osborne 
Climene 

Orlo Sheldon 
Jacques 

John L. Shine 
Quentin De Kercadiou 

Sheldon Stanwood 
Scaramouche 

Dorothy Tierney 
Columbine 

Walter Timmis 
Rhodomont 

John Turner 
Fencing Master 

Tim Walters 
Sergeant of Gendarmerie 

Frederic Worlock 
Gervais De La Tour 


In the Snare
Savoy Theatre, London
Opening:
July 4 1924
Total Performances:
66 [w M & S mat exc 5 July]
Closing:
Aug 30 1924


Category: Adventure Play from Sabatini’s novel, The Snare
Produced by
Tom Walls
Written by Rafael Sabatini and Leon M. Lion
Reviews in Illustrated London News 12/7/24, p 90; Nation and Atheneum, 12/7/24, p 476; Observer 6/7/24, p 11; Stage, 10/7/24, p 16; Sunday Times, 6/7/24, p 6; Times, 5/7/24, p 12

Cast
Lieutenant Richard Butler
Cecil Cameron
Count Jeronym de Samoval
Gerald Ames
Captain Carruthers
Archibald Batty
Colonel Colquhoun Grant
A. Hylton Allen
Sir Terence O’Moy
George Tully/Peter Gawthorne
Captain Edward Tremayne
William Seagram Jack Hobbs
Don Miguel Forjas
Rudolph de Cordova
Arthur Wellesley (Lord Wellington)
Clifton Boyne
Major Swan
Peter Gawthorne/Ian Fleming
General Sir Harry Stapleton
Peter Creswell/John C. Laurence
Sergeant Flynn
Terence O’Brien
Mullins
Sydney Compton
Corporal Bates
Peter Baxter
Colonel Fletcher
H. A. H. Russell/L. W. Erans
Captain Martin
Alan Borthwick/H. A. H. Russell/ John C. Laurence
Hamilton
Maurice Berkeley
Orderly Officer
John C. Laurence/Alan Borthwick
Countess of Valmaior
Mona Harrison
Lady O’Moy
Renée Kelly
Diana Armytage
Frances Doble/Josephine Wilson

The Tyrant: an Episode in the Career of Cesare Borgia
Theatre Royal, Birmingham, 9 March 1925
New Theatre, London
Opening:
Mar 18 1925
Total Performances:
126 [w W & S mat exc 18/3;
Closing:
4 July 1925

add mat 13/4, 1/6; no perf 10/4]
Category: Romantic Play from Sabatini’s story, The Lust of Conquest
Produced by
Matheson Lang
Written by Rafael Sabatini
Reviews in Illustrated London News 28/3/25, p 560; Observer 22/3/25, p 11; Stage, 26/3/25, p 18-19; Sunday Times, 22/3/25, p 6; Times, 19/3/25, p 12


Cast
Panthasilea Degli Speranzoni
Miss Isobel Elsom
Giulia
Miss Nona Wynne
Guido Degli Speranzoni
Wilfrid Walter
Santafiora
Douglas Ross
D'Aldi
A. W. Tyrer
Gianluca Della Pieve
Frank Vosper
Del Campo, Capello
Ernest Bodkin
Paviano
Anderson Melrose
Ferrani
Oliver Moore
Morano
J. H. Murray
Seneschal of Solignola
D. Morrison
Prince Ercole Sinibaldi
Edmund Willard
Mariano
Walter Lake/Stephen Denby
Ferrante
R. Elmson-Reed
Niccolò Macchiavelli
Leonard Shepherd
Swiss Soldier
Donald Wolfit
Sinibaldi’s Page
Hugh Williams
Ramirez
Henry C. Hewitt
Scipione
Owen Cassidy
Chamberlain
Walter Menpes
Giacopo
Edmund Clowes
Tolomeo
Wallace Bosco
Cardinal Remolino
William Magill Martyn
Gasparo
Henry James
Courier
Arnold Rooke
Micheletto Da Corella
R. Campbell Fletcher/Talbot Homewood
Agabito Gherardi
Cecil Cameron
Cesare Borgia
Matheson Lang
Giovanni
Alec S. Clunes
Gino
Walter Plinge

The Carolinian
Sam H. Harris Theatre,
Opening:
Nov 2, 1925
Total Performances:
24
Closing:
- Nov 1925


Category: Play, Original, Broadway
Setting:
Act I. -- An evening in June, 1774. The spacious hall adjoining the Grand Assembly Room of Charles Town in 1774; Acts II and III. -- May, 1779. The same scene changed into Headquarters for the Colonial Army.
Produced by Charles L. Wagner
Written by Rafael Sabatini and J. Harold Terry
Directed by Hamilton MacFadden

Cast
Martha-Bryan Allen 
Myrtle Carey 
Agnes Atherton 
Lady Gaspard 
Cosmo Bellew 
Colonel Harvey 
Murray Bennett 
Hanibal 
Sidney Blackmer 
Harry Latimer 
Norman Cannon 
Major Sykes 
Helen Chisolm 
Mrs. Brewton 
Charles Esdale 
Sir James Gaspard
President of H. M. Council of Carolina 
Arthur Forrest 
John Rutledge 
Vivian Kellems 
Sarah Custis 
Edward Lester 
Captain Davenant 
Pierre Mario 
Andre Randolph 
John Maroney 
Ralph Izard 
Paul Martin 
Captain Lee 
Joseph Mitchell 
John Lewis 
Robert Montgomery 
Captain Shenstone 
Walter Moore 
Ensign Laurens 
Edwin Mordant 
William Moultrie
Colonel of the South Carolina Militia 
David Owen 
Lieutenant Shubrick 
Reginald Owen 
Captain Manderville 
Valerie Petrie 
Mrs. Ralph Izard 
Winifred Spear 
Louis Carter 
Guy Standing 
Lord William Campbell 
Elizabeth Stevenson 
Lady William Campbell 
John Storm 
Mr. Trevor 
Charles Warburton 
Andrew Carey 

Scaramouche
King’s Theatre, Glasgow, 4/4/1927
Garrick Theatre, London
Opening:
Apr 18, 1927
Total Performances:
64 [w W & S mat 20/4–14/5;
Closing:
Jun 11, 1927

W & Th mat 18/5–9/6
Category: Play, Romantic Drama from Sabatini’s novel with the same title
Setting:
ACT I. The Garden of the Breton Inn at Gavrillac; ACT II. A Barn near Guichen; ACT III. scene 1. The Green room of the Feydeau Theatre at Nantes.(morning); scene 2. The same (evening); scene 3. The Stage of the Feydeau Theatre; ACT IV. Madame de Plougastel's Salon in Paris.
Produced by Martin Harvey
Written by Rafael Sabatini
Reviews in Illustrated London News 30/4/27, p 788; Nation and Atheneum, 30/4/27, p 113; Observer 24/4/27, p 15; Stage, 21/4/27, p 16; Sunday Times, 24/4/27, p 6; Times, 19/4/27, p 8


Cast
André-Louis Moreau
Martin Harvey/Gordon McLeod
Le Chapelier
Bryan Powley
Quintin de Kercadiou
Philip Howland
Philippe de Vilmorin
Ronald Hammond
Gervaise de la Tour
Gordon McLeod/Reginald Tippett
Chevalier de Chabrillane
Reginald Tippett/Bernard Nichols
King’s Lieutenant
G. Arthur
Florimond Binet
Leonard Daniels
Pierrot
Richard Weymouth
Polichinelle, Duroc
Eric Howard
Harlequin
Michael Mackenzie
Rhodomont
Oswald Lingard
Leandre
Kenneth Lascelles
Pasquariel
N. Bernard
Sergeant of Gendarmerie
Tom Reginald
Lesarches
William Burchill
Aline de Kercadiou
Margaret Swallow
Climène
Nina de Silva
Columbine
Mary Grey
Duenna
Bessie Elder
Comtesse de Plougastel
Marie Linden

The Promise
Scala Theatre, London
Opening:
Mar 3, 1928
Total Performances:
[only 1 mat perf known 
Closing:
-


Category: Play
Produced by William Foss
Written by F. Kinsey Peile and Rafael Sabatini

Cast
Captain John Constable
Hugh Fraser
Captain Tom Frost
Geoffrey Wilkinson
Dick Slug
Richard Caldicot
Lieutenant Eric Constable
Dennis Mantell
Andrew Macpherson
Alexander T. Gillette
Timothy Tomkins
Jacqueline Orton
Sally
Monica Waddington
Daisy Blythe
Reba Inglis
Betty
Margot Sieveking
Mrs Rogers
Renée de Vaux
Madge Primrose
Mrs Waddington
Schoolboys
Gloria Gordon, Yvonne Orton, Helen Moore, Joanna Bence Trower, Cherry Vaughan Neale, Diane de Vaux

The Tyrant
Longacre Theatre, (11/12/1930 - circa. 11/1930)
Opening:
Nov 12, 1930
Total Performances:
13
Closing:
- Nov 1930


Category: Play, Drama, Romance, Original, Broadway
Setting: The Castle of Solignola, the Communal Palace, and the Pieve Palace
Produced by Charles L. Wagner
Written by Rafael Sabatini

Cast

Charles Ashley 
Micheletto da Corella 

Leslie Bailey 
Page 

Victor Bozart 
Counselor of Solignola 

Edward Brown 
Page 

Hubert Brown 
Executioner 

Lily Cahill 
Panthasilea Degli Speranzoni 

Louis Calhern 
Cesare Borgia 

Burr Caruth 
Paviano 

Cecil Clovelly 
Counselor of Solignola 

Clay Cody 
Counselor of Solignola 

Herschel Cropper 
A Swiss Guard 

Gregory Deane 
Monk 

Edward Douglas 
Counselor of Solignola 

Victor Esker 
Gentleman of Assisi 

Edward Field 
Lackey 

Arthur Geary 
Scipione 

Patrick Glasgow 
Simonetta 

Hugh Gordon 
Mariano 

Averell Harris 
Prince Ercole Sinibaldi 

Herbert Hasluck 
Counselor of Solignola 

Robert Henderson 
Gianluce Della Pieve 

John Kramer 
Swiss Guard 

Martin Lane 
Gentleman of Assisi 

John Lyons 
Chamberlain 

J. Harold Machon 
Gino 

Arthur Marlowe 
Agabito Gherardi 

James Maurier 
Giovanni 

Arthur Metcalfe 
Capello 

Florence Metcalfe 
Lady of Assisi 

Helen Milligan 
Lady of Assisi 

J. S. Murray 
Del Campo 

John Park 
Ramirez 

Leslie Pearsall 
Swiss Guard 

Walter Plinge 
Gasparo 

Hugh Pollock 
Lackey 

Ivan Ramer 
Swiss Guard 

Herbert Ranson 
Count Guido Degli Speranzoni 

Cecil Reynolds 
Niccolò Macchiavelli 

George Riddell 
D'Aldi 

Iven Ross 
Gentleman of Assisi 

Frederick Rudin 
Cardinal Remolino 

Byron Russell 
Santafiora 

Ada Sinclair 
Giulia 

Ben Small 
Executioner 

C. Ellsworth Smith 
Seneschal of Solignola 

Sam Smith 
Lackey 

Ed Smythe 
Gentleman of Assisi 

Clara Stager 
Lady of Assisi 

Lloyd Taylor 
Ferrante 

Daniel E. Washington 
Executioner 

Willie Watson 
Lackey 

Billie Williams 
Lady of Assisi 

Walter Williams 
Monk