Wednesday, January 5, 2005

A few more Denishawn articles and film reviews

Today's trip to my local library - my first in a few weeks - was productive. Three inter-library loans were waiting for me. I went through the New Haven Union(from New Haven, Connecticut), where I uncovered some articles on the Denishawn performance there in April, 1923. I also found a few later articles and some nifty advertisements relating to the local screenings of The American Venus and A Social Celebrtity.
As well, I went through the Evening Reporter (from Lebanon, Pennsylvania), and found some articles on the Denishawn performance there in November, 1923. As with a number of their performances during Louise Brooks two years with the company, this Denishawn performance was a benefit. Their recital at the Academy of Music benefitted the local V.F.W. - and was writen-up in the local paper.

I also went through the Independence Daily Reporter (from Independence, Kansas). Louise Brooks and her family lived in Independence for about three or four months in 1919, after having left Cherryvale and before relocating to Wichita. The Denishawn tour stop there in January, 1924 - and received a front page review! Louise Brooks participation in the company received a full paragraph of praise, and her connection to Independence was noted.

Today, I also received a splendid email from Mario Gladu, who lives in Quebec. A French speaker, Mario wrote (in graceful English) to say that he found a few articles about the Denishawn performance in Montreal, Canada in March, 1923. Responding to my call for help, Mario took it upon himself to check for material in a French language newspaper based in Montreal, La  Patrie. As it turns out, Brooks was mentioned in one article - program notes reproduced in advance of the performance. There was also a picture of the Denishawn dancers - but it is hard to tell if Louise is among them. Mario has promised to check the other French-language papers in Montreal and Quebec for similar material. Thank you Mario! A citation - the first one from a French-language Canadian newspaper - was added to the bibliography. [Interestingly, Mario wrote that the theatre where the Denishawn company performed in Montreal, the historic St Denis, still stands. It is there that the well known "Just for Laughs" festival and many other events are held every year.  Here is a picture as it looks today.]

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