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Full text of "A few memories"

38                             A  FEW MEMORIES
yet of the triumph she had given her life to gain, told the whole story of her love and her revenge. When, after her awfully realistic death scene, she had been carried from the stage, there was perfect silence in the crowded theatre, and not until the curtain fell upon the last few lines of the play did shouts of enthusiasm break the stillness. The surprise and pleasure of the audience knew no bounds when, having washed off her witch's mask, she came before them in propria persona, a sweet-faced old lady, with a smile all kindness, and a gra-ciousness of manner quite royal. Indeed, I never saw such charm and dignity until years after, at Westminster Abbey, when, celebrating her Golden Jubilee, Queen Victoria, with one sweeping courtesy, acknowledged with majestic grace the presence of the assembled multitude.
It was arranged that we should meet Miss Cush-
Talma believed that an actor had two distinct beings in him, apart from the good and the evil we all possess—viz., the artist, who is any character he may be cast for, and the man in his own person. His theory was that the artist always studies the man, and cannot consider himself near perfection until he becomes master of the man's every mood and emotion. He describes the death-bed of his father, and the grief he felt in losing so excellent a parent, but adds that even in that solemn moment the artist began curiously to study the grief of the man. Yet he does not speak of the artist giving the man physical pain for the production of a stage