2 pages, 4to, Lenox Hill Players stationery. [With:] [FITZGERALD]. Playbill of Lenox Hill Players' production of "The Vegetable" at the Cherry Lane Theatre, April 1929. 4pp., 4to. " /> FITZGERALD, F. Scott (1896-1940). Autograph endorsement signed ("F. Scott Fitzgerald"), 8-lines endorsed along the margins of a 14 June 1928 letter from Mitchell Padraic Marcus to Fitzgerald. <I>2 pages, 4to, Lenox Hill Players stationery</I>. [<I>With</I>:] [FITZGERALD]. Playbill of Lenox Hill Players' production of "The Vegetable" at the Cherry Lane Theatre, April 1929. <I>4pp., 4to.</I> | Christie's
  • Fine Printed Books and Manuscr auction at Christies

    Sale 2227

    Fine Printed Books and Manuscripts Including Americana

    4 December 2009, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 56

    FITZGERALD, F. Scott (1896-1940). Autograph endorsement signed ("F. Scott Fitzgerald"), 8-lines endorsed along the margins of a 14 June 1928 letter from Mitchell Padraic Marcus to Fitzgerald. 2 pages, 4to, Lenox Hill Players stationery. [With:] [FITZGERALD]. Playbill of Lenox Hill Players' production of "The Vegetable" at the Cherry Lane Theatre, April 1929. 4pp., 4to.

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    FITZGERALD, F. Scott (1896-1940). Autograph endorsement signed ("F. Scott Fitzgerald"), 8-lines endorsed along the margins of a 14 June 1928 letter from Mitchell Padraic Marcus to Fitzgerald. 2 pages, 4to, Lenox Hill Players stationery. [With:] [FITZGERALD]. Playbill of Lenox Hill Players' production of "The Vegetable" at the Cherry Lane Theatre, April 1929. 4pp., 4to.

    "THE PLAY IS PSYCHOLOGICALLY WRONG." AND AS FOR THE ACTORS "ON STAGE--MY GOD--WATCH THEM DIE!"

    Fitgerald grants Marcus's request to let the Lenox Hill Players stage his play "The Vegetable" at the Cherry Lane Theatre without paying any advance royalty. But he gives the troupe fair warning: "All right--but against my better advice. It simply doesn't play. 2 professional & perhaps 8 amateur companies have said 'Sure--we can do it' (& failed every time), but it (the play) is psychologicly [sic] wrong. The writing conceals it in the reading, but on the stage from the beginning of Act II--My God--watch them die." Underneath his signature he writes "and very pessimisticly [sic]."

    Fitzgerald wrote "The Vegetable: From President to Postman" in 1923, and hoped this political farce would inaugurate his Broadway career. It became instead one of the famous theatrical disasters. Opening night at its Atlantic City tryout saw the crowd booing the actors mercilessly. Matthew Bruccoli says there are two versions of Fitzgerald's response. One has him fleeing the theatre after Act II in the company of Ring Lardner, heading for the nearest speakeasy. The other has him lustily joining the chorus of boos. Both seem equally plausible. This Lenox Hill Players production opened at the Cherry Lane Theatre on 10 April 1929, for a run of 13 performances. Lee Strasberg directed. Brooks Atkinson, writing in the Times, thought no more of the play than Fitzgerald. "Although the ungainly antics of the Lenox Hill Players leave a mere playwright at a sore disadvantage, it seems likely that no production of F. Scott Fitzgerald's 'The Vegetable,' which was belabored at the Cherry Lane last evening, could do very much with this play." Together 2 items. (2)


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