Next Monday evening the auditorium of the new Elizabeth Cary Agassiz House at Radcliffe will be opened, under the auspices of the president and Council of Radcliffe College, with a play by Miss Josephine Preston Peabody, entitled "Marlowe." Three performances will be given, on next Monday and Tuesday evenings at 8 o'clock, and on Tuesday afternoon at 2.30 o'clock.
The scene of the first act of "Marlowe" is laid in a London tavern in 1590. Christopher Marlowe, whose "Faustus" has just been most successfully staged, meets Alison Barnby, who, accompanied be her father, has come to London from Canterbury for a visit. Alison falls in love with Marlowe and his poetic songs, the style of which is entirely new to her. Marlowe's finer nature is impressed with her freshness and childish innocence. Later in the same act he has a meeting with a lady of the Court, who is in love with his impetuous genius, but not with the man himself. In the course of the play, Alison, her silent love for Marlowe conquered, but not forgotten, weds her cousin to the bitter disappointment of Richard Bame, another suitor. Marlowe, in the meanwhile, has been proven an "atheist" and "blasphemer" through the efforts of the lady of the Court, who, by this time, had tired of the playwright's admiration, and he is debarred from the Queen's players. Broken in fortune, but steadfast still in those beliefs which had gained for him the title of "atheist," Marlowe visits Alison. In a powerful scene he admits to the girl his love for her and finds relief from his despair in her purity and nobility. In the last act Bame, Alison's rejected suitor, believing that Marlowe is responsible for his misfortune in love, accuses the playwright of ill-conduct toward the girl. In order to save Alison's name. Marlowe ignores the insult and pretends to seize upon another with the result that he becomes engaged in the duel that causes his death.
Although the drama has clever action, it is essentially a drama of character, and the rather slight plot is used mainly as a background for the exposition of Marlowe's personality. The poet's pursuit of happiness, his love of fame and his reputed atheism struggle against his spirituality and his finer nature which has been awakened by his noble love for Alison. It is to shield the object of this love that Marlowe seeks the duel which ends so fatally for him. Tradition has it that Marlowe was killed in a vulgar tavern brawl, but in the play the more honorable motive for the quarrel has been supplied. From the cynical genius and voluptuous coarseness of the traditional Marlowe, has been created a charater acter which, struggling with the religious doubts of a deep thinker, comes to its end in a manner worthy of the noblest nature in chivalry.
Seats, at $1.50 for the floor and $1.00 for the balcony, may be obtained by application to Miss C. L. Humphreys, Radcliffe College. Applications must be accompanied by stamped and addressed envelopes. No seats will be sent out before June 14, and all seats remaining after that date will be placed on sign at Sever's.