The Explanation
(for those who require one)

And, of course, that is what all of this is -- all of this: the one song, ever changing, ever reincarnated, that speaks somehow from and to and for that which is ineffable within us and without us, that is both prayer and deliverance, folly and wisdom, that inspires us to dance or smile or simply to go on, senselessly, incomprehensibly, beatifically, in the face of mortality and the truth that our lives are more ill-writ, ill-rhymed and fleeting than any song, except perhaps those songs -- that song, endlesly reincarnated -- born of that truth, be it the moon and June of that truth, or the wordless blue moan, or the rotgut or the elegant poetry of it. That nameless black-hulled ship of Ulysses, that long black train, that Terraplane, that mystery train, that Rocket '88', that Buick 6 -- same journey, same miracle, same end and endlessness."
-- Nick Tosches, Where Dead Voices Gather

Treading the Boards #32

Brando, Celia Adler and Muni in A Flag is Born
Original caption:

September 3, 1946 - Actor Paul Muni (right) is on stage for the dress rehearsal of the new Ben Hecht play, "A Flag is Born," which opens September 5, at the Alvin Theater. Those who witnessed the rehearsal praised the stirring fact and fantasy chronicle of three refugees' flight from the terror of Europe toward Palestine. Paul Muni is cast as an ancient, dying wandering Jew, and Celia Adler (background), as his wife. At left is Marlon Brando.


estiv said...

The Old and the New acting styles circa 1946, plus Stella's sister.

I saw James Lipton speak about the first time he saw Brando act about this time. At first Lipton was embarrassed for this bumbling naif onstage with professionals, then gradually realized that he was watching something amazing.

Greg said...

I love that all he gets in the caption is "at left is Marlon Brando." Like, I guess we better tell the readers who the young guy is. One year later with the 1947 Broadway production of A Streetcar Named Desire, and everyone would know his name