Ronald Harwood Robert Brustein - Essay

Robert Brustein

(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

Ronald Harwood, who once looked after Donald Wolfit's doublet and hose, has fashioned a theatrical patchwork about this legendary British actor-manager and his times. It is called The Dresser … and, as a work of drama, it is agreeable, contrived, predictable, and sentimental, which is to say, much like those rickety vehicles (The Bells, The Count of Monte Cristo) such vagrant actors used to chauffeur when they didn't have Shakespeare sitting in the garage. The most amiable thing about The Dresser is its affection for the seedy backstage mores of circuiting rep companies, expressed in an alternately fustian and bitchy style. I can see the play being performed annually at the Garrick Club in...

(The entire section is 658 words.)