A card from Miss Joey Guggenheim--she refuses to play on Sunday night.
In the San Francisco Alta California
appears the following card from Miss Joey Guggenheim
, a young lady well known in theatrical circles, in which she takes positive (and, as we think, very just) grounds against performing on the Sabbath.
The card is published in vindication of herself against the persecutions of the manager of the Metropolitan Theatre
, and it is but justice to Miss Joey
to say that it gives evidence of ample ability to ‘"weed her own row"’ through this mundane world:
Editors Alta California:
As the public of San Francisco
cannot know why I did not appear last evening at the Metropolitan Theatre
, as announced in the bills and advertisements, I feel it my duty to give an explanation, and would be thankful for a place in your paper.
I was engaged at the above-named theatre for four weeks, with the privilege of eight, and made my appearance in the new piece entitled ‘"The Elves, or The Statue Bride,"’ on Wednesday, the 25th September. At my suggestion, and under my direction, my agent gave the management the plans of the last scene, and superintended its getting up, with the understanding, of course, that it was to be used only for me. I was received, as I am proud to say I am always in San Francisco
, most warmly, and the houses were full every night.
Immediately after the production of the piece, the management commenced importuning my agent to induce me to perform on Sunday nights, going so far as to say, ‘"Can't we get her to play one
Sunday night?"’ My reply through my agent, was that if I played one
Sunday night, I should have no hesitation in playing every
Sunday night; but that it had been expressly understood in my engagements here that under no consideration whatever would I perform on Sunday; that I would refuse the best engagement ever offered rather than break this resolution.
No more was said on the subject at that time, but it soon became apparent that the piece was to be played without me on Sunday night. I protested against this, and, I think, with reason, considering I had paid for half of it one hundred and thirty-seven dollars, and did not wish it played to the manager's profit and to my loss.
Notwithstanding my protest, the piece was put up for Sunday.
On Saturday night, I received a note from H. Coad
, prompter of the theatre, stating that he was desired to say from the manager, that the ‘"Love Chase
"’ and a farce would constitute the performance for Monday evening. Whether this was done with the idea of making me appear in old pieces, and of keeping the ‘"Elves"’ to their own especial profit, or merely to frighten me, I cannot say. At any rate, the first thing I saw yestereay morning in the newspapers, was an announcement to the effect that I was that evening to appear in the ‘"Elves."’ During the day, however, my agent received a letter from the manager, stating that I had broken my engagement with the Metropolitan Theatre
by not playing on Sunday, and by not sending him the manuscript of Tom Taylor
's ‘"Overland Route;"’ consequently he would not allow me to perform that evening.
Now, the claiming of manuscripts was simply an idle excuse.
By the statement of the machinist, the scenes could not be prepared in two weeks; and I may state here that it is not usual for artists to give into uncertain
managerial hands valuable manuscripts two weeks before they can be made legitimate use of. Besides, the manager knew that the parts were not even copied out, and that I was hard at work on them myself, intending to give them into the theatre as soon as one
of the three scenes should be completed by Messrs. Rogers
, the scene painter, and Stackhouse
, the machinist — without which it would have been a waste of time to rehearse.--Having explained that point, I come to the other so-called violation of my engagement, namely, the not playing on Sunday nights.--I can only say, it has been clearly understood by all the managers in this city that I would not engage to do so. I have steadily refused, when I knew my share of the receipts would be from a hundred and fifty to two hundred dollars every Sunday; so it is plain the manager had no shadow of right to demand or expect me to perform on those particular evenings.
But I would rather be, as I am, deprived of my engagement — which was averaging seven hundred and seventy-one dollars a night (gross receipts!)--than to act in violation of the law and my own convictions of right.
In conclusion, I must state that I can have no controversy with the manager of the Metropolitan Theatre
, for, in self-respect, I could not descend to such a thing.
I owed an explanation to the public — I have made it; and, having done so, I must decline all further notice of the affair.