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Mr. C. E. M. Griffith, READER OF SHAKESPEARE UNDER PATRONAGE OF THE CHICAGO SHAKESPEARE CLUB Season 1908-9 Announcement 1908 SEASON 1909 We feel much honored to present America's greatest reader of Shakespeare, Mr. C. E. W. Griffith, in a repertoire of Shakespeare's thirty-six plays. W. JOS. POIRIER, Mgr. MR. GRIFFITH AS A READER OF SHAKESPEARF. Mr. Griffith holds that it is the reader's art to illumine literature; to popularize what is good in modern writing, and to revive the priceless treasures of the Classics. Only a few of Shakespeare's plays are presented on the stage, but the reader makes it possible for us to realize dramatically all of his mighty literary creations, Mr. Griffith's artistic renditions are based upon careful and original literary interpretations. He is the only reader in the world who reads every season all of Shakespeare's plays in public. This worthy undertaking is both unique and prodigious. These plays are so abbreviated that nothing offensive to modern taste remains, and yet so artistically effected that no word is changed, no line corrupted, leaving the performance surrounded by pure Shakespearean atmosphere. Mr. Griffith insists that true art is its own best interpretation, and therefore substitutes suggestive expressions for the usual pedantic explanations. He reads with great intelligence, colors his roles with fine emotional shading and distinguishes them with delicate yet distinct suggestions of character. He possesses a marvelously flexible voice, an expressive face, strong personal magnetism, and unbounded sympathy which humanizes all he reads. The distinctive characteristic of his reading is a noble aim to present those great life-pictures in such a way as to show the logic of events and the results of action, for the purpose of broadening the mind and ennobling human conduct. CHIGAGO SHAKESPEARE CLUB. EXGERPTS AND COMMENTS. Rev. Thomas Ewing Sherman, S. J. Mr. Griffith subordinates elocution, histrionic art, rhetoric and display to the higher and nobler purpose of making all the accomplishments the outward gleam of inward beauty; the beauty of the soul expressed in ethical perfection. Santa Anna (Cal.) News. He was enthusiastically received. Klio Association Enthusiastically received in his reading of Twelfth Night. Dubuque News. Spontaneous and enthusiastic applause greeted his reading of Othello. London (England) Era. An heroic Martial Murat. Rev. Thomas E. Cox (St. Jarlath's Rectory, Chicago). Mr. Griffith's renditions of Shakespeare are to me more than interpretations—they are revelations. Few readers make one realize the full power and pathos of those great plays like Mr. Griffith. Who that has heard him in Richard III. can ever forget the jubilant wickedness and the transcendant dash and courage of the last Plantagenet. Daily (Chicago) Chronicle. Mr. Griffith has performed the remarkable feat of reading all of Shakespeare's plays for several seasons for the Chicago Shakespeare Club. Daily (Chicago) Journal. The diamond medal presented to Mr. C. E. W. Griffith last evening by the Chicago Shakespeare Club bore the words, To America's Greatest Reader of Shakespeare. Chicago Culture Club. America's greatest reader of Shakespeare. Gerald Turnbull (President of Chicago Shakespeare Club). Mr. Griffith is a great artist. He is a musician, a painter, a poet. He is America's greatest reader of Shakespeare. Sisters of Loretto. Versed in his art. New World (Chicago). His cantillations formed the most artistic program of the season. Lake View (Woman's Club). A most brilliant and accomplished artist. Douglas Park (Women's Club). His reading was an inspiration to higher life. The nobility of his art and the perfect technique of his art rival each other. — Ladies of Loretto, Chicago. We commend both the art and the man. — Sisters of Charity, Cincinnati, Ohio. Kate A. Henderson (Librarian Joliet Public Library. Former Sup't City Schools). As an interpreter of the bard of Avon he has no equal. Robert B. Mantell. Success to America's greatest reader of Shakespeare. The glory of Mr. Griffith's art is that it inspires right thinking and right living. — Madames of the Sacred Heart, N. Y. City. Edinboro (Scotland) Review. The finest elocution of the company was that of Mr. Griffith. The nobility of his art is its purpose. — Sisters of St. Joseph, St. Louis. A truly great rendition of King Lear. — Notre Dame of Maryland, Baltimore. A beautiful and artistic rendition. — Trinity College, Washington, D. C. Julius Cæsar, As You Like It, Macbeth and Coriolanus received with enthusiasm. — Madames of the Sacred Heart, Philadelphia. Professors and students enthusiastic. — New Subiaco College, Spielerville, Arkansas. We regard Mr. Griffith as the noblest reader of them all. — Ursuline Nuns, Louisville, Ky. A wonderful reader. — S. S. of Notre Dame. Mr. Griffith's reading was immense. — St. Ignatius College (S. J.), Cleveland. Mr. Griffith's reading of Macbeth was superb. — Rev. Prendergast (S. J.), N. Y. City. Greatest enthusiasm. — Mt. Carmel Academy, Wichita, Kansas. We cannot enough extol his art. — College of The Pines, Chatham, Canada. The greatest reader we have heard. — Woman's Club, Watertown, Wisconsin. We were charmed by his reading. — North End Club, Chicago. His art is marvellous. — St. Mary's of the Springs College, Columbus, Ohio. Mr. Griffith's reading was highly appreciated. — St. Ignatius College (S. J.), Chicago. Mr. Griffith's renditions are always of the highest order of excellence. — St. Joseph's College, Dubuque, Iowa. The subtle and poignant expression of beauty and of truth. — St. Mary's College, Leavenworth, Kansas. We await with eagerness his promised rendition of Dante's Divina Comedia. — Visitation Nuns, Baltimore. Louisville (Ky.) Record: Mr. Griffith stands pre-eminently superior to any American interpreter of Shakespeare's plays, most of which he renders without the aid of a book. While one is forced to admire beyond expression his genius, it is the grandly noble character of the man which wins our deepest respect. He is an educator, training the mind to appreciate the beautiful, the good and the true. Chicago Shakespeare Club. Mr. Griffith was recently the recipient of a gold and silver wreath of rare beauty from the Catholic Culture Club, of Woodlawn, Chicago * * * Last evening, after reading Taming of the Shrew at the Chicago Shakespeare Club, he was presented with a magnificent laurel wreath from the British Empire Shakespeare Society of Dublin. The wreath was made of leaves picked near the home of Shakespeare at Stratford-on-Avon. * * * Mr. Griffith's spring tour will end at Halifax, N. S., and modest praise asserts that it has been triumphant. Sisters of Charity. He is a great reader and nobler than any character he portrays. The greatest reader we have heard. — Sisters of Charity, N. Y. City. Shakesperean Club (Warren, Ohio). His open air readings of Shakespeare plays were largely attended and applauded to the echo. E. H. Sothern. I congratulate you on the result of your labor in founding the Chicago Shakespeare Club. It is surely a great work you have done and I am heartily in sympathy with it. Newport News, Newport, Ky.: We hear Shakespeare read to know life, said Mr. Griffith at the Immaculata Academy last evening, and we say, Hear Mr. Griffith to know Shakespeare. He sounded the deepest tragic note in Hamlet; as a comedian in Taming of the Shrew he was equally superb, but in the sublime pathos of King Lear, as the broken-hearted old king and deserted father, the reader was at his best. Tears, the most perfect tribute to tragic genius, gave proof to the intensity of the reader's art and the appreciation of the audience. The Telegraph, Dubuque: Mr. Griffith is always a master, whether as the dignified Othello, the desperate Macbeth, the meditative Hamlet, the majestic Prospero, the subtle and wily Mark Antony, the avaricious Shylock, the ardent Romeo, the scowling Benedict, the fearless Richard or the imperial Lear. The Warren (Ohio) Daily Tribune, Monday, Dec. 30, 1907. Mr. C. E. W. Griffith recently read twenty Shakespeare plays in Warren. Mr. Griffith completed his fall tour of one hundred performances by a reading of Hamlet at Wheeling, W. Va., Dec. 18. His next reading will be in Philadelphia Jan. 1. Mr. Griffith read while on tour Hamlet twenty times and King Lear fifteen times. After his reading in Youngstown Dec. 10 for the Shakespeare Club Mr. Griffith was presented with a magnificent laurel wreath and tendered a banquet at the Elks' Club. He was the recipient of numerous tributes to his genius from the Gulf to the Lakes and from New York City to Omaha. Among the other gifts proudly displayed by this great reader are fifty college pennants and a silk Union Jack from a college in Canada; a gold medal from the College of Mt. St. Vincent-on-the-Sea at Halifax, N. S.; an ivory crucifix from the Loretto Abbey, of Toronto; a silk Canadian flag from the Waverly Club, of Halifax, N. S.; and gifts from La Salette, of Covington, Ky. He prizes most highly, however, two crosses, one of pearl from Jerusalem, presented by St. Mary's Academy at Terre Haute, Ind., and one by the famous old St. Mary's convent of St. Joseph's Carondelet, St. Louis, Mo. The laudatory newspaper clippings which Mr. Griffith gathered while on tour would, if spread out, it would seem to one of his visitors, have covered the city park. A few of them, which are models of the whole lot, run as follows: From the Columbus Columbian: Mr. Griffith must be characterized as America's greatest reader of Shakespeare. Seated in his chair as Shakespeare himself sat reading his plays from manuscript before Queen Elizabeth, Mr. Griffith by means of the marvelous flexibility of voice, beautiful expression of countenance and subtle and mystical influence of his personality conjured up any one of the characters in Shakespeare's thirty-six dramas before his spellbound and breathless beholders. No study of Shakespeare is complete until Mr. Griffith's in comparable rendition of Shakespear's dramas immortal have been heard. But the vocation of Griffith's art does not end with extending an appreciation and love of Shakespeare. Mr. Griffith is an educator. He is uplifting the taste of the people in literature and art. He is proving that the reader's art is something more than that of entertaining. It would seem after hearing him the most potent art in the education of the mind and the cultivation of the heart. FOR TERMS AND DATES ADDRESS W. JOS. POIRIER, 234 OAKLEY BLVD., CHICAGO, ILL. MR. GRIFFITH READING ONE OF SHAKESPEARE'S PLAYS .
|Title||Mr. C. E. W. Griffith: reader of Shakespeare|
|Topical Subject (LCSH)||
|Personal Name Subject||Griffith, C.E.W.|
|Digital Collection||Traveling Culture: Circuit Chautauqua in the Twentieth Century|
|Contributing Institution||University of Iowa. Libraries. Special Collections Dept.|
|Archival Collection||Redpath Chautauqua Collection|
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|Contact Information||Contact the Special Collections Dept. at The University of Iowa Libraries: http://www.lib.uiowa.edu/spec-coll/contact/index/|
|Number of Pages||4|
|Digitization Specifications||Scanned at 600 dpi, 32-bit color. Master image available in tiff format.|