Theatre or theater is a collaborative form of performing art that uses live performers, usually actors or actresses, to present the experience of a real or imagined event before a live audience in a specific place, often a stage. The performers may communicate this experience to the audience through combinations of gesture, speech, song, music, and dance. It is the oldest form of drama, though live theatre has now been joined by modern recorded forms. Elements of art, such as painted scenery and stagecraft such as lighting are used to enhance the physicality, presence and immediacy of the experience. Places, normally buildings, where performances regularly take place are also called "theatres" (or "theaters"), as derived from the Ancient Greek θέατρον (théatron, "a place for viewing"), itself from θεάομαι (theáomai, "to see", "to watch", "to observe").
A theatre company is an organisation that produces theatrical performances, as distinct from a theatre troupe (or acting company), which is a group of theatrical performers working together. (Full article...)
The Blue Flame is a four-act play written by George V. Hobart and John Willard, who revised an earlier version by Leta Vance Nicholson. In 1920, producer Albert H. Woods staged the play on Broadway and on tour across the United States. Ruth Gordon, the main character, is a religious young woman who dies and is revived by her scientist fiancé as a soulless femme fatale. She seduces several men and involves them in crimes, including drug use and murder. In the final act, her death and resurrection are revealed to be a dream. The production starred Theda Bara(pictured), a popular silent film actress who was known for playing similar roles in movies. Critics panned the play, ridiculing the plot, the dialog, and Bara's acting. Theater historian Ward Morehouse called it "one of the worst plays ever written". Bara's movie fame drew large crowds to theaters, and the play was a commercial success, breaking attendance records at some venues. Ruth Gordon was Bara's only Broadway role, and The Blue Flame was one of her last professional acting projects.
Olivia Shakespear (1863–1938) was a British novelist, playwright, and patron of the arts. She wrote six books that are described as "marriage problem" novels. Her works sold poorly, sometimes only a few hundred copies. Her last novel, Uncle Hilary, is considered her best. She wrote two plays in collaboration with Florence Farr. In 1894 her literary interests led to a friendship with William Butler Yeats that became physically intimate in 1896. Following their consummation he declared that they "had many days of happiness" to come, but the affair ended in 1897. They nevertheless remained lifelong friends and corresponded frequently. Yeats went on to marry Georgie Hyde-Lees, Olivia's step-niece and her daughter Dorothy's best friend. Olivia began hosting a weekly salon frequented by Ezra Pound and other modernist writers and artists in 1909, and became influential in London literary society. Dorothy Shakespear married Pound in 1914, despite the less-than-enthusiastic blessing of her parents. After their marriage, Pound would use funds received from Olivia to support T. S. Eliot and James Joyce. When Dorothy gave birth to a son, Omar Pound, in France in 1926, Olivia assumed guardianship of the boy. He lived with Olivia until her death on 3 October 1938.