The real Jane Austen


September 25, 1997|By J. Wynn Rousuck

Despite the wide popularity of her novels, Jane Austen's personal life remains somewhat of a closed book. British actress and playwright Judith French will take a glimpse into that book when she presents the U.S. premiere of her one-woman show, "My Solitary Elegance: The Woman Behind the Works of Jane Austen," at Goucher College this weekend.

French approached Goucher when she learned that the college library houses this country's largest private collection of books by and about Austen, donated by the late Alberta Hirshheimer Burke, a Goucher alumna, and her late husband, Henry G. Burke, founder of the Jane Austen Society of North America. Compiled from Austen's novels, manuscripts and surviving letters, "My Solitary Elegance" premiered at the Theatre Royal Bath in 1994 and has subsequently been performed throughout Britain and Australia. Excerpts have also aired on BBC television.

"My Solitary Elegance" will be presented in the Mildred Dunnock Theatre on the Goucher campus, 1021 Dulaney Valley Road, Towson, at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $15. Call 410-337-6512.

Pub Date: 9/25/97

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