Hollywood Legends: 'Live' on Stage is a collection of three solo plays exploring the lives of 20th-century movie icons; Marlene Dietrich, Orson Welles and James Dean. In his Introduction Simon Callow reflects on the fascination of biographical theatre.
Marlene by Pam Gem takes us into the private world of Marlene Dietrich, one of the greatest femme fatale actresses of all time who made over 35 films in Germany and Hollywood, including The Blue Angel. She was also a consummate cabaret artiste renowned for the perfection of her performances and her beauty, even in old age. Dietrich was an outspoken critic of the Nazis and her rendering of Where Have All the Flowers Gone? (Burt Bacharach) is one of the most poignant anti-war songs ever recorded. Siân Philips played Marlene to perfection in the West End and on Broadway.
Obediently Yours, Orson Welles by Richard France received its world premiere at the Theatre Marigny in Paris. Since then, the play has been translated and performed in Spanish, Dutch, German, Portuguese and Romanian. The play gives us Welles, the great star of Citizen Kane, The Third Man, Touch of Evil, and many more movies, in his own voice, allowing us to share the thoughts and feelings of this giant of the screen.
James Dean is Dead!! (Long Live James Dean) by Jackie Skarvellis is a moving portrait of the enigmatic star of East of Eden, Rebel Without a Cause and Giant, in which Dean starred with Elizabeth Taylor and Rock Hudson. In this one-man play, Dean is like a lost child in limbo, robbed of life after a fatal car crash in 1955. 'There's this story I told you before - about the Little Prince who fell to the Earth. That's me. That's like my story. I was the Little Prince that fell to Earth.'