Vol. 12 No. 1 (Spring 1991)

THE PERFECTION OF GESTURE: TIMOTHY FINDLEY AND CANADIAN THEATRE

Carol Roberts

Timothy Findley, one of Canada's best-known writers of fiction, has also made notable contributions to Canadian theatre. His early acting career, his work as a playwright and as a scriptwriter for CBC radio and television have resulted in his participation in several 'firsts' in Canadian theatre history. Findley acted in the inaugural season at the Stratford Festival, was the National Arts Centre's first playwright-in-residence, and wrote the script for CBC Television's first feature-length colour film. As well, Findley's theatre background has had a profound effect on the development of his writing career and on his fictional style. Some of his recent work indicates a renewed interest in writing for the stage.

Timothy Findley, l'un des écrivains les plus connus du Canada, a également apporté des contributions très remarquées au théâtre canadien. Sa carrière de jeune acteur ainsi que son oeuvre de dramaturge et de scénariste pour la télévision et la radio démontrent son importance comme innovateur dans l'histoire du théâtre canadien. Acteur à Stratford lors de la saison inaugurale du Festival, il fut aussi le premier dramaturge en résidence au Centre National des Arts et scénariste pour le premier long métrage à la télévision de la CBC. Par ailleurs, sa formation d'homme de théâtre a eu une influence profonde sur le développement de son style et sur sa carrière d'écrivain. Certains de ses ouvrages récents suggèrent que l'écriture théâtrale l'attire à nouveau.

Timothy Findley, one of Canada's most highly respected writers, is well-known for his fiction. Novels like The Wars, which won the 1977 Governor General's Award, Famous Last Words, Not Wanted on the Voyage, and The Telling of Lies have established his reputation as a writer of great skill, imagination, and vision. He is less well-known as an actor, playwright, and writer for CBC radio and television. His work in these areas, however, represents a significant contribution to Canadian theatre and has had, in turn, a profound effect on his fiction. Research for an annotated bibliography on Timothy Findley made me realize the extent of the influence of the theatre on him - and of Findley on the theatre. As well, some of his recent work indicates a renewed interest in dramatic writing. After concentrating on fiction for two decades, Timothy Findley may be returning to his first career: the theatre.

As a young man, Findley turned to theatre to seek 'the perfection of gesture' 1 that had first attracted him to dance, a career which he was unable to continue because of a back problem. This search for the perfect gesture, for perfection in expressing his creative vision, has continued throughout his career as a creative artist.

Findley began acting in Toronto, where he was born in 1930, with two indigenous theatre groups. Dublin-born actor and director Earle Grey established the Earle Grey Shakespeare Festival in 1949 and for several summers the company performed in the Trinity College quadrangle in Toronto. The pay, Findley remembers, was $20 a week. 2 The International Players, founded in 1948 by Arthur Sutherland, performed in Kingston and Toronto until 1954. With these two companies, Findley began his career in the theatre.

He auditioned for the CBC in 1952 and soon began to work on radio and television, often cast in comic roles. In a 1962 profile, the CBC Times reports that he could not understand why he got such parts, since, as he said, 'I have no sense of humour to speak of.' CBC producers, the profile adds, liked his highly intelligent, professional approach. 3 One of Findley's roles was that of Peter Pupkin in Stephen Leacock's Sunshine Sketches, the first Canadian-produced television series. This was only the first of several 'firsts' in his involvement with Canadian theatre.

In 1953 Findley participated in another historic event in Canadian theatre: the inaugural season of the Stratford Shakespeare Festival. In Richard III, Findley played Catesby and in All's Well That Ends Well, a French officer. Renown at Stratford, an account of the inaugural season by Tyrone Guthrie and Robertson Davies, is illustrated with coloured drawings by the late Grant Macdonald. Davies comments that the costumes in All's Well That Ends Well are modern but have 'an ageless and romantic air.' 4 A photograph of a handsome and very young Timothy Findley in his officer's uniform illustrates Davies' remarks.

Findley has maintained his association with the Stratford Festival since that first season. He often returns for performances and has written Festival Performance Programme notes 5 and an article for the Stratford Visitors' Guide. 6 'Stratters, Ont.' (a name coined by Guthrie to distinguish it from the other Stratford) is a fond reminiscence of that inaugural season.

Findley returned to Stratford in 1987 as 'not quite a playwright,' 7 when Robin Phillips and the Young Company conducted workshops for a play based on his novel Not Wanted on the Voyage. He writes of the experience, 'Watching them find the play in my novel, I was devastated by the power of their imaginations and the daring of their performances.' 8 Clearly the theatre still cast its spell on the novelist.

But perhaps more important than the minor roles he played during Stratford's first season was his contact with Alec Guinness. Guinness was so impressed by Findley and another young actor, Richard Easton, that he offered them fares to England, accommodation, and training at London's Central School of Speech and Drama. Both actors readily accepted and when their course was over were given parts in Guinness's production of The Prisoner in the West End. For the next three years Findley worked as a contract player with H.M. Tennant. Another of his roles was Rudolph, the snobbish waiter, in Guthrie's production of Thornton Wilder's The Matchmaker which played in Edinburgh, Berlin, and London. However, when the show moved to New York, Findley was unable to go because of his agency contract.

In 1955 Findley played Osric in Paul Scofield's production of Hamlet at London's Phoenix Theatre. This play was the first British production to tour the Soviet Union since before World War II and Herbert Whittaker, theatre critic for the Globe and Mail, asked the young Canadian actor for his impressions of Russian theatre. Findley's reply from Moscow was published in the newspaper's December 7 edition. He comments that the flamboyant Russian personality, 'more open and expressive than ours,' is an aid to Russian actors. Findley describes the cooperation of everyone involved in a Russian theatrical production. Lighting and sound technicians, costumers, make-up artists, and set designers work together from the first rehearsal. Whittaker suggests that Canadian theatres should emulate this model. 9

After praising Russian acting and play production, Findley comments that the tragedy of Russian theatre is that 'propaganda is the one tongue.... They lack that freedom which we have, which is, that we may tell what truth we are moved to tell and not that only which is expedient to be told.' 10 This is perhaps the first expression of Findley's creed as a creative artist. He holds sacred the artist's freedom to tell the truth as he sees it; to tell that truth is also the artist's duty. Findley's recent work with PEN International is one example of his concern that writers all over the world be guaranteed that freedom.

Upon his return to Toronto Findley rejoined The Matchmaker for the remainder of its New York run and a cross-country tour. He renewed his friendship with Ruth Gordon, who played Dolly Levi, her husband Garson Kanin, and playwright Thornton Wilder. His friendship with these three theatre people changed the direction of his career.

Findley describes how Ruth Gordon provided the impetus for his first short story while The Matchmaker was touring England:


 
We had been to an exhibition of painting in Manchester, all done by people under thirty years of age. Ruth asked me, 'Why are you people so damned negative about everything? All those pictures were black, depressing. Can't you say yes to anything?' Secretly I decided to prove that we're not. I went back to my digs and I wrote a story. It was called 'About Effie,' about one of the maids who worked at our house when I was a kid. The next day Ruth said to me, 'Oh, Tiffy, you really shouldn't be acting at all, you should be writing.' (Which is a lovely thing to be told when you want to be an actor.) They had my story typed ... then they showed it to Thornton Wilder. 11


Wilder invited Findley to his hotel and, after feeding the proverbial starving actor, told him that 'About Effie' was the worst story he had ever read. 12 Despite Wilder's pronouncement it was published in the first issue of Tamarack Review in 1956. And despite his tough criticism Wilder recognized Findley's talent and encouraged his writing. They discussed his early efforts in detail, often throwing pages into the fireplace. 13 'Dramatize!' Wilder told Findley and taught him to get within a character's voice. 14 Findley has called Wilder 'a tremendous influence' on his career and writing style. He sees in Wilder's work 'the master rhythm' that he strives for in his own writing. 15

Findley has said that a sense of rhythm - Wilder's master rhythm - is the most valuable thing he brought from his acting experience to his writing. If actors cannot 'find their way through the words' he knows the rhythm of the dialogue is not right. 16 Findley reads his writing aloud trying to achieve a smooth, natural rhythm, believing that 'if you can't read something out loud, then you can't read it in your mind. 17 As well, Findley says he learned from actors and directors how to portray a character, how to 'feel' a person other than oneself. Actors must discover their characters' motivations, why they say every word they say. Writers must do the same. He calls his acting years 'an apprenticeship - almost a perfect apprenticeship for a writer.' 18

Why did Timothy Findley turn from acting to writing? In a 1967 CBC Television interview, Findley told Warren Davis that he realized that there was much that he wanted to say that he could not express on the stage. 19 By the mid-50s Findley was discovering a voice in his writing that was his own, that was unique. He began to realize he could not express this voice in acting. It was a matter, he noted, of being in control instead of being the agent. 20 In acting he could not achieve the perfection of gesture that he sought.

But he also began to feel 'boxed in,' trapped by the minor roles he was playing. 'I got stuck . . . playing a very small part. It makes you very unhappy. You keep thinking ... that you're worth more, you can do more.' 21 Jean Roberts, who worked with Findley early in his career, has said Findley could have been another William Hutt. 22 Findley's own assessment is that he was a 'good actor - I could have had a career. I'd never have been a star ... I would always have been a useful actor. ...' 23 But not a perfect one.

Although Findley admits missing the world of the theatre, he does not, he says, miss acting. 24 Nor does he regret the decision to become a writer. 25 'I think Tiff ultimately found greater freedom communicating with words and paper than with scripts, footlights, and audiences,' observed William Hutt. 26

In 1956 Findley went to Hollywood and his experience there must have convinced him that his future lay in writing not acting. In any case, the beginning of his dramatic writing dates from this period. He found acting jobs scarce, but scraped together enough to live on, doing odd jobs and doctoring scripts for the CBS Playhouse 90 series. Ruth Gordon continued to encourage Findley and introduced him to Stan and Nancy Colbert, who later became his literary agents. Findley moved in with the Colberts and continued to write.

His second novel, The Butterfly Plague, is set in Hollywood. In it Findley penetrates to the heart of the film world he hoped to enter. The narrative centres on a Hollywood family threatened by corruption and inherited disease, paralleled with historical events unfolding in Nazi Germany. For Findley Hollywood symbolized the longing for perfect beauty, grace, and expression - the perfect gesture that he sought in his own work. The Butterfly Plague explores the myth of perfection and finds its quest destructive, its achievement impossible.

Back in Toronto in 1958 Findley had more success finding work as an actor, including television work for the CBC where he acted in adaptations of works by Dickens, Chekhov, and Anouilh. At the same time he wrote advertising copy for a Richmond Hill radio station, worked on his novels, The Last of the Crazy People and The Butterfly Plague, and wrote arts news for CBC Radio's The Learning Stage.

Writing for The Learning Stage led to Findley's development of a distinctive style. 'Out of that experience,' he said, 'came a lot of what might be called my style - the use of interview for narrative, the chop shots, getting in things quickly and then getting out. I had magically fallen on my feet with a way that worked.' 27

Findley's other radio and television work during the 1960s included interviews with Canadian writers and theatre people, documentaries on theatre companies, an off-beat Easter drama entitled Who Crucified Christ?, and The Paper People. The 1967 broadcast of The Paper People, CBC's first feature-length colour film, caused an immediate controversy. Members of Parliament joined the public and critics in an outcry over the film's high cost and subject matter. 28 The film focuses on an artist who fashions life-size figures out of papier-mâché then burns them in a kind of early performance art, filming the conflagration. 29 The filming of a documentary about the artist's work frames the story. Findley came up with the plot idea after producer Mervyn Rosenzveig said he wanted a script to capture the essence of the sixties. Script editor Doris Gauntlett and director David Gardner helped shape the text and shooting script of the film. 30

The Paper People received mixed reviews, ranging from 'a magnificent piece of television' 31 to 'pretentious, arty ... and downright boring.' 32 Mary Jane Miller wrote an analysis for Canadian Drama/L'Art dramatique canadien and Findley's script was published in the same issue. 33The Paper People is remembered in the history of CBC drama for its originality and for the controversy it engendered. Miller writes that it was the 'one superbly original piece' in the CBC Festival Centennial Year season. 34 The film questioned the values of documentary filmmaking by providing, in Miller's words, 'a cutting glance at our well-known and widely praised documentary film tradition.' 35

Findley's next film, Don't Let the Angels Fall, produced by the National Film Board in 1969, caused hardly a ripple of interest. Portraying the dilemma of an urban family whose private world is no longer proof against modern society's influences, it premiered at the Cannes Festival but was not a commercial or critical success. Findley was frustrated with the production. He stood by in horror as director George Kaczender adapted his screenplay, interpreting his work as social criticism of Canada's middle class. Even the title offended him. Findley was becoming disillusioned with artistic collaboration. After a similar experience with The Paper People, he questioned whether he could work in media which required collaboration. 'As a writer,' he said, 'film is perhaps not the medium that I should work in at this stage.' 36

Meanwhile, Findley continued to write fiction, a solitary art in which he could articulate his vision without compromise. He could write the story, act each part, and direct every scene. The Last of the Crazy People and The Butterfly Plague were finally published in the United States, after being turned down by Canadian publishers. Findley was now living at Stone Orchard (named in honour of Chekhov), a farm near Cannington, Ontario, with William Whitehead, another CBC writer.

During the 1970s Findley wrote extensively for the CBC and produced some of his best work for radio and television. A radio play, 'The Journey,' won an Armstrong Award in 1971 and a collaboration with William Whitehead for the television series The National Dream received a 1975 ACTRA Award. Another Findley-Whitehead script, Dieppe, 1942, was given the ANIK Award in 1979. At the time Findley commented to Herbert Whittaker on how valuable television work was for him. He said that 'finding my feet as a playwright has come through television.' 37

Many Canadian writers 'found their feet' as Findley did writing for radio and television. The CBC provided experience and employment for many struggling writers. Eugene Benson and L.W. Conolly write that between 1935 and 1965 CBC Radio became, in effect, Canada's National Repertory Theatre of the Air, producing 3500 original Canadian plays. They add that the professionalism demanded by CBC influenced the work of dramatists who also wrote for the stage. 38 Mary Jane Miller makes the same point. During the 60s and 70s television not only created an outlet for Canadian writers, it provided a training ground for new playwrights and a training ground in new techniques for established ones. 39 Because Canada did not have a fully-developed theatrical tradition, Miller writes, 'television helped to change our expectations about all forms of drama before our professional theatre matured.' 40

Findley's best-known television dramas are his scripts for The Whiteoaks of Jalna, broadcast in 1972. Sid Adilman, after seeing Findley's pilot episode, predicted 'a success unmatched in previous years' for the series and noted that Findley had 'infused new life into the fusty novels' of Mazo de la Roche. 41 Other critics were less enthusiastic. During the 70s Findley also adapted Istvan Orkeny's novel Catsplay for television, wrote Other People's Children, two episodes for The Newcomers series, and several radio scripts for Ideas including 'Missionaries,' an early version of Can You See Me Yet? 42

Timothy Findley had become a successful writer for radio and television, yet he longed to return to live theatre - as a playwright. In 1974 The National Arts Centre gave him that opportunity when he was appointed its first playwright-in-residence. 43 The NAC reported that Findley 'had the makings of a script but needed the chance to watch ... the day-to-day making a play ready for the stage.' 44 He followed the production of John Coulter's Riel and worked on his own play.

The following season Can You See Me Yet? was staged at the National Arts Centre under the direction of Marigold Charlesworth, who had starred in The Paper People. Frances Hyland played Cassandra Wakelin, an asylum inmate, in a psychodrama that explores the loveless, stultifying Wakelin family and Cassandra's breakdown. The Wakelins and Findley's use of documentary techniques are reminiscent of The Last of the Crazy People and foreshadow elements of The Wars and later works. Like The Paper People, Can You See Me Yet? received mixed reviews but there was general agreement that it was a difficult play. 'So stunning,' wrote Myron Galloway, 'that it will no doubt take audiences and some critics a bit of time to appreciate.' 45 Many reviews were highly critical and Findley swore he would never write another play. He returned to Stone Orchard, seeking again the perfection of artistic expression in fiction. Most critics agree that he found it in his next novel, The Wars.

In a 1987 article, John S. Bolin examines the use of irony and presentational staging techniques in Can You See Me Yet?. These elements, he writes, enhance the play's themes of prudence, sacrifice, distrust of power, and national identity. 46Can You See Me Yet? was published by Talonbooks in 1977 with an introduction by novelist Margaret Laurence who praised the play and predicted that it would 'continue to be performed in our theatres for a very long time to come.' 47 It has, however, rarely been performed. 48 John F. Hulcoop writes that the fact that it has been less frequently staged than other less mentioned Canadian plays is consistent with the overall pattern of poor reception that Findley received in his own country. Prior to The Wars, he writes, Can You See Me Yet? is 'the most disturbing, moving, and revealing of all his fictions.' 49

A few other examples of Timothy Findley's dramatic writing have been published. His 1984 short fiction collection, Dinner Along the Amazon, contains three stories that were first written as dramatic works. 'Daybreak at Pisa' is an excerpt from a work-in-progress, a play about Ezra Pound's imprisonment after World War II. Pound plays an important role in Findley's novel Famous Last Words; his character, Hugh Selwyn Mauberley, is the novel's protagonist. In 'Out of the Silence,' Findley explores the relationship between T.S. and Vivien Eliot. 'Losers, Finders, Strangers at the Door' is a prose version of the script 'Strangers at the Door' published in Quarry in 1982. Findley calls it a 'savage duologue' between two actors which explores the power over them of a third character who never appears. 50 Findley's radio play 'The Journey' and excerpts from the stage play John A. - Himself! have also been published. 51

John A. - Himself! was performed at Theatre London in 1979 under the direction of Peter Moss. Findley wrote the play for William Hutt, who had played Canada's first prime minister in The National Dream. He based the play on the premise that actors and politicians are of the same breed. As Macdonald looks back on his career he sees it as theatre, as the John A. Macdonald Show - Twenty-four Years in Her Majesty's Theatre, Ottawa. 52 With a variety of highly-coloured theatrics, including ventriloquism, magic tricks, and a circus act starring Louis Riel, Findley reveals the man behind the mask.

The play is modelled on Victorian music-hall entertainment popular in Macdonald's time. Findley employed a vaudeville approach because he wanted to make the play more 'theatrical.' He believes that the theatre's 'essential reason for being' is its 'theatricality.' 53 At moments, the play's theatrics verge on the melodramatic, the histrionic.

Reviews of John A. - Himself! were generally favourable. One reviewer wrote that the play was a lot like Canadian history - 'moments of inspired achievement alternating with periods of humdrum and triviality.' 54 Herbert Whittaker noted that Findley scorned a mere historical representation of Macdonald's career, as would be expected of the author of The Wars. In this and later novels Findley skillfully weaves historical fact with fictional characters and events. 55

Timothy Findley has said he prefers to write for live theatre rather than television or film. When asked if he found it an advantage to be able to reach many more people through television, Findley noted the unique bonus of live theatre is that the audience becomes part of the production: 'Contact ... is the value of theatre and what keeps it alive.' He adds that part of the excitement of live theatre is taking a chance that the performance might fail. To dare to take that chance is part of theatre's magic. 'I would rather,' he has said, 'reach my five million piece by piece in the theatre than in one fell swoop through television.' 56 His affinity for writing for the stage comes no doubt from his years of acting upon it.

Findley's reputation as a novelist was growing. He received critical praise for Famous Last Words, published in 1981. The same year an issue of Canadian Literature was devoted to The Wars and Findley wrote the screenplay for a film version directed by Robin Phillips and starring several of Canada's finest stage actors. William Hutt, Martha Henry, Jackie Burroughs, Brent Carver, and Domini Blythe gave remarkable performances in the film which, although not a commercial success, received critical praise both for the production itself and as an example of the great potential of Canadian filmmaking.

Findley recently commented to film critic Jay Scott on the frustrations he experienced during the filming of The Wars. Although he praised Robin Phillip's sensitive direction, an inadequate budget and the lack of vision of some of those involved in the production led Findley to question whether anyone could achieve artistic freedom in the film medium. 57 Once again, Findley found artistic collaboration incompatible with his quest for the perfect gesture.

Timothy Findley is now one of Canada's most highly-respected novelists, yet he continues to write and act for the CBC. A four-part series on the life and music of Stephen Sondheim, written and narrated by Findley, was broadcast in 1987 on CBC Radio's Arts National Friday Night. The following year his highly-acclaimed adaptation of Famous Last Words was aired in five episodes on both Sunday Matinee and Stereo Theatre. Robert Crew, writing for the Toronto Star, suggests that Findley's experience as an actor contributed to his success in adapting the prose narrative to dramatic scripts. 58 From his years as a radio actor and writer Findley has an astute awareness of the demands of a medium where the action and character delineation must be conveyed entirely through dialogue.

Critics often comment on the theatre's influence on, and dramatic qualities of Findley's fiction. Its taut documentary structure, its intensely visual, almost cinematic quality, and its claustrophobic settings suggesting the confines of a stage bespeak the theatre's influence. 59 Norah Story writes that his 'mastery of theatre techniques lends great affectiveness' to novels like The Butterfly Plague in which 'action, dialogue, and interior monologue are highlighted by the carefully constructed backgrounds in which the protagonists play out their parts.' 60 Another critic notes that Findley's dialogue has the potential for ready conversion into script: 'it is strong, realistic, immediate and, above all, dramatic.' His style almost forces the reader to read the lines aloud, becoming, as it were, an actor in the drama of the fiction. 61

There are recent indications that Timothy Findley is returning to dramatic writing. In October 1988 CBC Radio's Morningside presented three dramas based on stories from Stones, his second collection of short fiction. Findley adapted 'Almeyer's Mother,' 'Sky,' and 'Bragg and Minna' for the series. 'The Trials of Ezra Pound,' centred on the poet's trial for treason following World War II, was aired on CBC Stereo in March 1990. In it Findley plays the part of William Carlos Williams. Three Chekhov plays, adapted by Findley, were recently broadcast on CBC radio. Another indication of a return to dramatic writing appeared in print: the opening scene of a play-in-progress, tentatively titled Inquest, was published in the March 1989 issue of Books in Canada. The play is set in Ottawa in the 1960s and deals with a crisis in the life of a diplomat.

Timothy Findley has found himself on the stage too. Like most contemporary writers he often gives public readings. Audiences never fail to remark on his actor's voice and dramatic delivery. Recently at the Vancouver Writers Festival he took to the stage with three actors in a dramatic reading of the title story in Stones. The performances, directed by Paul Thompson of Montreal's National Theatre School, were a Festival highlight. 62

In a 1988 interview Findley was asked why he did not write more in the dramatic form. He replied that he has but 'it is all in drawers.' He said he is not yet happy with himself as a playwright but was working on a play that comes closer to what he wants to say. 63

Throughout his career, Findley has sought the perfection he hoped to find in dance. 'Dancing and writing are the same,' he has observed, 'It's a question of defining beauty with gesture.' 64 He has perhaps come closest to achieving this in his fiction. He has been frustrated in the past when he felt his vision became lost in the collaborative arts of film and theatre but the pull of the theatre is strong and he may now be willing to share that vision again with actors and directors.

Timothy Findley began his career as an actor, interpreting the words and ideas of others. When he realized that he had more to say than he could express on the stage he became a writer, a creator of words and ideas. His experience in the theatre has shaped the novels and short fiction for which he is renowned and we have reason to believe that he will create more for the stage in the future. A full assessment of Timothy Findley's contribution to Canadian theatre may have to wait for many years - until some of those scripts he speaks of come out of the drawers and onto the stage where he began his career.

Notes

THE PERFECTION OF GESTURE: TIMOTHY FINDLEY AND CANADIAN THEATRE

Carol Roberts

I would like to thank F.R. Atance of the Department of French, University of Western Ontario for his help in translating the abstract, and to acknowledge the wealth of pertinent information found in Eugene Benson and L.W. Conolly's Oxford Companion to Canadian Theatre (Toronto: Oxford Univ Press, 1989).

1 DAVID MACFARLANE, 'The Perfect Gesture,' Books in Canada Mar 1982 p 5
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2 PHILIP MARCHAND, 'Timothy Findley: Novelist on a High Wire,' Chatelaine Feb 1983 p 96
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3 JUNE GRAHAM, 'The Children of Dionysus,' CBC Times July 24-30 1965 p 10-11
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4 TYRONE GUTHRIE and ROBERTSON DAVIES, Renown at Stratford: A Record of the Shakespeare Festival in Canada 1953 (Toronto: Clarke, Irwin 1953) p 111
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5 TIMOTHY FINDLEY, 'Scandals,' in Stratford Festival 1987 Performance Programme; and 'Murder in Our Time,' in Stratford Festival 1988 Performance Programme (Stratford: Stratford Festival), n p
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6 TIMOTHY FINDLEY, 'Stratters, Ont.' in Festive Stratford 1988 Visitors' Guide (Stratford: Stratford Festival and Stratford and Area Visitors' and Convention Bureau 1988) p 4
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7 lbid
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8 Ibid. Scheduled public performances of the play were cancelled due to inadequate rehearsal time. Accidents and illness of actors in Avon and Festival productions made it necessary for several Young Company actors to fill understudy roles. A new adaptation by Richard Rose of Not Wanted on the Voyage will premier in February 1992. A Necessary Angel Theatre Company benefit reading, directed by Rose, was given on 2 March 1991, cruising Toronto Harbour aboard the Captain Matthew Flinders. Timothy Findley attended
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9 HERBERT WHITTAKER, 'Flamboyant Personality an Aid to Russian Actor,' Globe and Mail 7 Dec 1955 p 7. Although it ran under Whittaker's byline, this column consists mostly of Findley's remarks and is his first published article
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10 Ibid
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11 ALISON SUMMERS, 'Interview with Timothy Findley,' Canadian Literature no 91 (Winter 1981) p 50
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12 Ibid
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13 Ibid
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14 PETER BUITENHUIS, 'The Return of the Crazy People,' Books in Canada Dec 1988 p 18
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15 SUMMERS p 54
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16 SUMMERS p 52
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17 MARTY GERVAIS, 'Writing and the Writer,' Windsor Star 26 Feb 1983 p C10
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18 BUITENHUIS p 17
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19 WARREN DAVIS, interview with Timothy Findley, The Day It Is, CBC TV 27 Oct 1967
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20 BUITENHUIS p 17
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21 ELSPETH CAMERON, 'The Inner Wars of Timothy Findley,' Saturday Night Jan 1985 p 28
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22 lbid
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23 SUMMERS p 55
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24 CYNTHIA GOOD, 'Timothy Findley: Author of the Year,' Canadian Bookseller, June-July 1984 p 12
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25 SUMMERS p 55
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26 MARCHAND p 248
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27 MACFARLANE p 6
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28 MARY JANE MILLER, 'An Analysis of The Paper People,' Canadian Drama/L'Art dramatique canadien vol 9 no 1 (1983) p 49
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29 DAVID GARDNER, director of The Paper People, saw the film as part of the 'disposable art' movement which reflects a materialistic world coming to an end, where the only permanence is impermanence, where everything is disposable. See his 'Eros and Thanatos,' ArtsCanada no 116/117 (Apr 1967) p 25-6
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30 'Scripting Paper People,' Montrealer Mar 1968 p 6
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31 BOB BLACKBURN, review of The Paper People, Telegram 13 Dec 1967 p 37
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32 SHEILA H KIERAN, 'The Paper People: Pretentious, Sickeningly Arty - and Boring,' Globe and Mail 7 Dec 1967 p 14
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33 MILLER. Note that the ending of the script as Findley wrote it is different from that discussed in the article, an example of the many changes made during the film's production
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34 MARY JANE MILLER, 'Canadian Television Drama 1952-1970: Canada's National Theatre,' Theatre History in Canada/Histoire du théâtre au Canada vol 5 no 1 (Spring 1984) p 68
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35 MILLER, 'Analysis' p 50
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36 CAMERON p 30
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37 HERBERT WHITTAKER, 'Tim Findley Pursues the Playwright's Art,' Globe and Mail 16 Feb 1979 p 16
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38 EUGENE BENSON and L W CONOLLY, English-Canadian Theatre (Toronto: Oxford Press 1987) p 60. Nigel Hunt has recently suggested that radio drama is once again on its way to becoming Canada's national theatre. See 'The National,' Books in Canada Mar 1990 p 12
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39 MARY JANE MILLER, Turn up the Contrast: CBC Television Drama Since 1952 (Vancouver: UBC Press 1987) p 190
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40 MILLER, 'Canadian Television,' p 53
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41 SID ADILMAN, review of 'The Whiteoaks of Jalna,' Variety 16 Feb 1972 p 47
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42 Information about CBC radio and television programming is difficult to find; copies of scripts, often impossible. For information on locating documents and scripts see CAROL ROBERTS and LYNNE MACDONALD, Timothy Findley: An Annotated Bibliography (Toronto: ECW Press 1990), sections on Radio and Television Material and National Archives Manuscript Collection; MARY JANE MILLER, Turn up the Contrast, Appendix B; and HOWARD FINK, Canadian
National Theatre on the Air 1925-1961: CBC-CRBC-CNR Radio Drama in English: A Descriptive Bibliography and Union List (Toronto: U Toronto Press 1983)
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43 The NAC continued their 'experiment,' funding a playwright-in-residence programme for two more seasons
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44 NATIONAL ARTS CENTRE, Annual Report 1974-75 (Ottawa: Supply and Services 1975) p 24
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45 MYRON GALLOWAY, 'Findley Achieves Great Play with Can You See Me Yet?,' Montreal Star 2 Mar 1976 p B7
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46 JOHN S BOLIN, 'The Very Best of Company: Perceptions of a Canadian Attitude Towards War and Nationalism in Three Contemporary Plays,' American Review of Canadian Studies vol XVIII no 3 (Autumn 1987) p 309-22
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47 MARGARET LAURENCE, Introduction, Can You See Me Yet? (Vancouver: Talonbooks 1977) p 13
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48 The only other performances which I have been able to verify were both amateur. One was at Toronto's Alumnae Theatre in Feb 1979, another by the U of T University Players in Apr 1984. See WHITTAKER, 'Tim Findley' for comment on the Alumnae production
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49 JOHN H HULCOOP, 'Timothy Findley,' Dictionary of Literary Biography vol 53: Canadian Writers Since 1960, ed W H New (Detroit: Gale 1986) p 186
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50 TIMOTHY FINDLEY, 'Strangers at the Door,' Quarry vol 31 no 3 (Summer 1982) p 75
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51 Published respectively in Canadian Drama/L'Art dramatique canadien vol 10 (Spring 1984) p 115-41; and Exile vol 11 no 3 (1986) p 24-37. As well, prose versions of two scripts for the Newcomers television series were published in The Newcomers: Inhabiting a New Land ed Charles E Israel (Toronto: McClelland and Stewart 1979)
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52 DOUG BALE, 'Next Theatre London Play Revives Era of Macdonald,' London Free Press 24 Jan 1979 p D9
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53 Ibid
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54 DOUG BALE, 'John A. - Himself! Potentially Fine Play,' London Free Press 1 Feb 1979 p C5
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55 HERBERT WHITTAKER, 'John A. the Ultimate Ham,' Globe and Mail 2 Feb 1979 p 12
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56 SUMMERS p 52
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57 JAY SCOTT, interview with Timothy Findley, Film International, TV Ontario 2 Mar 1991
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58 ROBERT CREW, 'Famous Last Words Makes Smooth Transition to Radio,' Toronto Star 9 Jan 1988 p F3
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59 GOOD
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60 NORA STORY, 'Timothy Findley (1930),' Supplement to the Oxford Companion to Canadian History and Literature ed William Toye (Toronto: Oxford Press 1973) p 103
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61 GOOD
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62 HEATHER CONN, 'Echoes of Expo at Vancouver Festival,' Quill and Quire Dec 1988 p 18
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63 BUITENHUIS p 18
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64 MACFARLANE p 8
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