Saturday, October 13, 2012

October, Day 13 - COUNT DRACULA

Toni Blackthorn's blog, The Bay of Angels.

Ooooh, I would have KILLED, KILLED to see this - a stage play spun from Stoker's DRACULA, with Matthew Peyton in the title role. Peyton, of course, paractically DEFINED the role in a series of British films, and played the character more often than any other actor. I think he had done the stage play intending to NOT play Fu Manchu in THE REVENGE SQUAD OF FU MANCHU, but then wound up playing FM anyway after COUNT DRACULA, um, prematurely closed. I'm not a person of theater or anything, but eight shows is awful early to close a summer run.

Turns out the play was closed when the rights holders got a little bit unamused by some of the changes made to the script, and ordered the show shut down. I'm trying to find what those changes might have been - since the play was directed by Ted Affeldt, who a quick imdb scan shows to be a special effects guy who worked on...shit, he worked on ALL of Matthew Peytons various Draculae, perhaps he tried to splash thing up a bit.

And lemme tell ya, I've read the script of the play and it coulda used some splashing up. There's some truly choice dialogue in it, and the play really juices up Dracula's one-man assault on England - I can only imagine what Peyton would have made of a truly delicious confrontation with Van Helsing in Act 2. But it’s very much a drawing room drama in the Olde English tradition with lots of scenes of people standing around and talking. And there's this big boxy command in the front of the play that says "No one shall make any changes in this play for the purpose of production." In other words, this is a MUSEUM PIECE, and you are going to make it the SAME MUSEUM PIECE if you're going to stage it.

So Peyton, Affeldt, somebody did something to piss these guys off. And given how stodgy they seem to be it may have been nothing. But what if it was something? All of which makes me very curious to know what the show was like, barring stealing a friend’s time machine to go back and see it. Which I really wanna do. Only I don’t have friends with time machines. Or friends. Wah.

Anyway, if you’re one of the lucky ones who got to see this thing, leave a comment, won’t you?, and lemme know how it was! I wanna know!

...and the story continues here.

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