Papers relating to an amateur performance by Charles Dickens' Amateur Theatrical Company at the Theatre Royal, Birmingham, as part of a brief provincial tour in June and July for the purpose of raising funds for an endowment for the curatorship of William Shakespeare's House in Stratford-upon-Avon which had been purchased by London and Shakespeare Committee in These papers relate to the administrative and publicity arrangements made by Charles Dickens for this performance on 9 June and comprise a letter to the secretary of the Birmingham Polytechnic Institution about the arrangements and publicity for the performance, a draft playbill and draft ticket in his hand which were sent to the Birmingham printer, Hugh Hutton, together with a printed version of the finalised ticket. The papers also include a letter relating to the provenance of the papers, Charles Dickens' Company included various of his literary and artistic friends as well as his brothers. In , the London and Shakespeare Committee purchased Shakespeare's House, in Stratford-upon-Avon and wanted to appoint a suitable person to administer the birthplace. Charles Dickens, who was a member of the Committee, formed a touring amateur theatrical troupe in for the purpose of staging amateur theatricals in order to raise funds for an endowment for the curatorship of the house and then to install the recently bankrupted dramatist Sheridan Knowles as the first incumbent. Dickens had previously staged a benefit performance for Leigh Hunt , English essayist and poet.
An amateur theatre company performing Nicholas Nickleby, Part 2, by Charles Dickens. UK
Charles Dickens and the Great Theatre of the World by Simon Callow - review | Books | The Guardian
Rochester was for many years a favourite of Charles Dickens , who owned nearby Gads Hill Place , Higham ,  basing many of his novels on the area. The Diocese of Rochester , the second oldest in England , is centred on Rochester Cathedral and was responsible for the founding of a school, now The King's School in AD,  which is recognised as being the second oldest continuously running school in the world. Rochester Castle , built by Bishop Gundulf of Rochester , has one of the best preserved keeps in either England or France, and during the First Barons' War — in King John's reign, baronial forces captured the castle from Archbishop Stephen Langton and held it against the king, who then besieged it. Rochester and its neighbours, Chatham and Gillingham , Strood and a number of outlying villages form a single large urban area known as the Medway Towns with a population of about ,
Charles Dickens and the Great Theatre of the World by Simon Callow - review
I t's both the best and worst of times to produce a Dickens biography. Best because for anyone just returned from the further reaches of the galaxy is the bicentenary of the great man's birth. Worst, because there's competition.
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