There is connection
When the Shaw Festival in 2007 made a decision to mount the musical Mack & Mabel, I was hit by the perfect rightness of this musical being part of the Festival. The Mack & Mabel program was printed using a number of photos from the Looking for Mabel collection so I have a very special interest in this musical program.
The plot involves of the regrets of Mack Sennett not being able to tell Mabel Normand how much he loved her and Mabel’s sense of isolation and her addictions. The story is fantasy, as all musicals need to be; the music is some of Jerry Herman’s most tapable. Near the end of the play Mabel, leaves Mack on a ship for Europe; and you guessed it in real life Mabel did sail to
The real life Pygmalion in the summer of 1922 left for
As early as April 1915 the fan magazine, Motion Picture Magazine in Musings of "The Photoplay Philosopher" states that Mabel is a fan of Shaw’s writing; and 3 years later Photoplay, August 1918 reported that Mabel Normand was reading Strindberg, Ibsen, and Shaw. This is significant because this was almost 4 years before the Taylor killing and her trip to London to met one of her literary heroes and the development of there friendship.
They were friends, how isn’t that grand!
When the program came in the mail, from the Shaw Festival presentation of Mack and Mabel, the first thing I did was look for my photos of Mabel Normand, to see which ones were used and then only after smiling and finding my name in print, I actually read the article by Professor Paul Walsh of Amherst.
Mabel Normand’s funeral was huge and attended by many very famous people, her pallbearers included: Mack Sennett; D. W. Griffith; Sam Goldwyn; Charlie Chaplin; Sid Grauman; Eugene Pallette and the headline read “Thousands Mourn at Normand Rites” – “Obscurity”? I do not think the facts support this!
If I thought that Professor Walsh’s essay was only going to be read by people attending the musical Mack & Mabel at the Shaw Festival then perhaps I would just let is pass, after all what real harm would it do? Because of his academic credentials, I think a correction of his misstatement should be made.
Historians and researchers that I have consulted before writing this note have suggested that I “lighten up.” However, you know me, I find this type of thing hard to just let go of… (yes I know this is a split infinitive)
"Toward the end of her (Mabel’s) short life she was vaguely implicated in a couple of shady
I was amused that he wrote that Virginia Rappe was underaged at 30! However, it is not funny that he would write that Roscoe was somehow involved in underage sex, which could get scary if people add that to the other lies told about the
Yes, I hold film scholars to a higher level then fans particularly when they put things in writing.