JANE AUSTEN AND THE IMPORTANCE OF AUNTS
“I have always maintained the importance of Aunts” – Jane Austen.
Darcy’s aunt Lady Catherine de Bourgh, Fanny Price’s Aunt Norris, and that most voluble of Austen aunts, Miss Bates, all appear in this lively new talk by actress Angela Barlow, who maintains that no Austen novel is complete without an aunt. And then there’s Aunt Jane herself …
“An outstanding performance. I loved Angela’s sympathetic interpretation of Miss Bates, coming across as Jane Austen intended – a great talker, but also well-meaning, self-effacing, and generous. Lady Catherine and Mrs Norris were rendered to perfection – and how moving to hear Jane’s nieces’ thoughts on their very special aunt. Just magical.” Hazel Jones
“A thoroughly delightful talk – so well balanced between fictional aunts and family ones – and cleverly linked at every juncture. We were all entranced! I’d happily hear it again.” Maggie Lane
“Superb. Her Miss Bates was a triumph. It brightened up dreary January no end.” Penny Townsend
“Angela’s talk was an imaginative blend of references to aunts, whether in Austen’s novels, to Jane herself, or to other literary aunts. So skilled was Angela’s delivery that we all knew which character was speaking without being told. Thoroughly enjoyable.” Janet Stow – audience member at Jane Austen Regency Week, Alton.
- To book this talk, or for further information, please go to Contact.
JANE AUSTEN’S ACTORS: SIDDONS, KEAN – AND HENRY CRAWFORD
Who were they, and why were they important to the author of Pride & Prejudice?
Angela once more brings an actor’s view to an entertaining Austen topic, as she looks at the significance of acting and the theatre in Jane’s life and work.
“We were delighted to host Angela Barlow’s Jane Austen’s Actors as one of the first illustrated talks at The Roxy. It was a resounding success – interesting, informative, entertaining and funny. As an actress herself, Angela was able to bring some important players of the period to life by demonstrating how they might have interpreted roles, and how these interpretations changed over the period of Jane’s life in line with theatrical fashion. Highly recommended!” Juliet Maclay, The Roxy, Axbridge
“Triumph is exactly what it was – you should have been at my table by the door and heard people’s comments as they left.” Hazel Jones, Jane Austen Society, SW Branch
“In this witty and perceptive examination of the prominent actors of Jane Austen’s time and the novelist’s own thoughts about acting, Angela Barlow skilfully weaves the two strands together, showing how Jane Austen brought her critical intelligence to bear on her theatrical experiences and how indebted is her fiction to the arts of drama.
With humour, charm and knowledgeableness worn lightly, Angela Barlow gives us an hour of entertainment which will resonate long after.” Maggie Lane
“Angela is a marvellous story-teller. In her recent presentation, Angela wove the most wonderful theatre as she skilfully spoke about the actors who were performing at the time of Jane Austen’s writing. Like all good story tellers Angela engaged us, conjuring up the lives of the actors, alongside reading excerpts from Austen’s works and balancing fact with fiction: good theatre in the making. Like others in the room I did not want her to stop, we were enthralled. Do not miss an opportunity to hear her.” Ruth Sewell, Jane Austen Society, SW Branch
- To book this talk, please go to Contact.
JANE AUSTEN & CHARACTER: AN ACTOR’S VIEW
How did Jane Austen create her wonderfully original characters? And can an actor ever do justice to them on stage or screen?
Angela has taken her dramatic talk, Jane Austen & Character: an Actor’s View, all round England; also to Australia, and to the US. She has given it at literature festivals and at many Austen societies, perhaps the most notable being the Jane Austen Society of North America, the largest group of Austen aficionados in the world.
“A perfect mix of information and entertainment…”
Reviews of this talk can be read below.
- To book this talk, please go to Contact.
Talks presented with Maggie Lane:
Angela joins forces at frequent intervals with author and Austen authority Maggie Lane. Together they present Maggie’s inspiring Austen lectures. Some titles are:
WRITING TO THE END
I MUST LEAVE OFF BEING YOUNG
REAL AND IMAGINARY INVALIDS IN EMMA
JANE AUSTEN AND BATH
NOT THE ONLY WIDOW IN BATH
And a double bill celebrating Mansfield Park:
THE LIFE OF MRS INCHBALD Maggie Lane
ON “LOVERS’ VOWS” Angela Barlow
- To book any of these talks, please go to Contact.
For forthcoming performances, please click here.
Reviews of Jane Austen & Character: An Actor’s View
“A perfect mixture of information and entertainment, setting the tone for the start of our conference.
Jane Austen Society of North America 2010 Annual Conference
“A pleasure to hear Angela’s insightful remarks about Austen’s creation of character.”
Jane Austen Society of Washington DC
“[In Jane Austen & Character: An Actor’s View] Miss Barlow gave us a real insight into Jane Austen’s genius (and her own) and ensured the audience would never read Mrs Elton in the same way again.
The presentation (I could, with justification, call it the performance) ended with an extract from Pride and Prejudice, as Lizzie tells her mother of her engagement to Darcy, a fitting conclusion to a wonderful, lively afternoon!
One minute we were watching the young and healthy Catherine Morland bouncing around, and the next the aged, valetudinarian Mr Woodhouse was before our eyes. Jane Austen characters were leaping off the page: Catherine and Isabella, Mrs Bennet and Miss Bates, Mr Bennet and Mrs Norris appeared with a slight change in posture, a shift in facial expression, a voice rising or falling, nasal or crystal clear. Never has an hour passed so quickly, nor the loss of a sunny afternoon been so little lamented!”
Marilyn Joice, Jane Austen Society, Northern Branch, UK
“Angela Barlow, in her sensitive presentation, examined the challenges and delights an actor has when trying to capture the essence of a Jane Austen character and then taking that character from the pages of the novel to the medium of the stage.
This insightful commentary was interspersed with dramatic examples from a wonderful selection of Jane Austen characters, as Angela illustrated her points by acting out dialogues or speeches from the novels.
One moment she was a timid and grateful Fanny Price, the next she was Mrs Elton in full flight about Maple Grove and the Sucklings. She was as convincing acting Lady Catherine de Bourgh as she was when she played Mrs Bennet. The performance was a delightful mixture of humour and pathos, wit and satire. Angela Barlow is a highly accomplished actress.
I have great pleasure in recommending Jane Austen and Character: An Actor’s View to any group which enjoys the novels of Jane Austen, to literature festivals, to school students and teachers, and to Jane Austen societies around the world.”
Susannah Fullerton, President, Jane Austen Society of Australia
“During the summer of 2009 Chawton House Library organised a programme of events to celebrate the 200th anniversary of Jane Austen’s taking up residence in the village of Chawton.
As part of these activities Angela Barlow delivered a wonderful dramatised talk on Jane Austen and Character: An Actor’s View which vibrantly and successfully brought to life many individuals from the novels. An accomplished actor with a wide range of TV, film and theatre credits to her name, Angela explored, most effectively, the subtle ways in which Austen may have worked on her creations.
All in all it made for a terrific evening of entertainment which was enjoyed by a packed house and which I wholeheartedly recommend to anyone with even a passing interest in Jane Austen.”
Stephen Lawrence, Chief Executive, Chawton House Library