Search America's historic newspaper pages from 1789-1924 or use the U.S. Newspaper Directory to find information about American newspapers published between 1690-present. Chronicling America is sponsored jointly by the
National Endowment for the Humanities and the Library of Congress. external link Learn more
Image provided by: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Library, Urbana, IL
Newspaper Page Text
"SHALL I GO ON STAGE?" NOT UNLESS YOU
HAVE PERSONALITY, SAYS ELSIE FERGUSON
(The first of four articles on
stage life by one of the greatest of
all stage stars.)
BY ELSIE FERGUSON, ,
Famous American Actress, Now at
the Blackstone Theater in
(Copyright, 1916, by Newspaper
"Shall I go on the stage?"
"When you whisper this question in
your own ear, little American Girl,
whisper another"" one right in the
same ear, and with the very next
breath. Say it this way:
"What have I to give the stage?"
And then answer it -truly, because
you are the person who will be
fooled most, and hurt most, by the
wrong answer. The scnswer you
should be able to make, if you are to
succeed on the stage, is
"Personality! I have loads of per
sonality to give the stage!"
, Then, if you answer your second
question to yourself that way, you
can hazard an uncompromising
"yes" to the first question and get
ready to go "on the stage."
WHERE THE HORSES LAUGH
Thompsons, Utah Mark Bielson
has quit hauling freight from the
railroad to Moab and established a
business of hauling autos out of the
dip at Courthouse wash. He uses
an eight-horse team.
Personality is the greatest asset
any person has in any walk of life.
It is what lifts. certain persons above
the crowd; that makes "things come
their way." But on the stage it is
more telling than anywhere else.
There If is an essential, if a prime
success is wanted. And I don't think
any girl wants to go on the stage if
she doesn't see in herself an even
tual star, a dominating forfte in the
land of heart's desire that lies be
hind the footlights.
Suppose you answer these ques
tions to your own satisfaction. The
next thing to ask yourself is this:
"Am I willing to work then, and
work like a slave, from now on to
the end?" .
For that is what a stage career
that iB going to get somewhere
means. It means study, study, study.
From the very minute that you de
cide on a stage career you must be
gin. Not in a dramatic school where
they teach you "how to read aloud,
how to walk and how to st down."
Not at alL It. means to study your
self, on the stage and off, 24 hours a
And the process of this study is a
great deal more complicated, a good
deal less of a "royal road," than you
can imagine at first thought It in
volves no such easy mechanics of
acting as learning to pull a long face
"to denote sadness," or smiling "to
denote "happiness." No, indeed-! It
means this: x
To learn by observing human be
ings in life and by studying them at
they are portrayed in the great
works of literature, how people act
under varying conditions which con
front them, and to 'discover further
why they act thus and so.
This is, in other words, toijegin to
track down the very meanings of life
itself, and any girl who finds a pure
joy and a boundless fascination iii
such study, may be sure that she ia