The Rice Players Third Annual Shakespeare Festival, 1950 something

One of the pleasures of Commencement is that it brings people in to see me who I otherwise don’t get to see. Among my visitors this year were loyal reader Rob Brazile (’86) and his wife Juli (’85), who were in town to see their talented and charming daughter Cory graduate.

I knew Rob was coming and I was excited to get the photo scans he was bringing (more on these later). What I wasn’t expecting was that they would also bring scrapbooks from Juli’s parents, Sandy (’56) and Helen (’57) Havens. What a treasure! As you surely already know, both Havens were deeply involved with student theater at Rice for many years. Here’s a link to a piece about Sandy and the history of the Rice Players. Down at the bottom you can click through to a video of a lecture he gave about the same topic. I recommend it!

Rice Players flyer nd mid50s Havens scrapbook 055

You’ll notice the flyer is undated so I don’t know whether the pictures, which are dated 1955, were taken the same year.  Still, I’m confident that what we see here is pretty clearly Shakespeare on the steps of the Chem Lecture Hall:

Rice Players on Chem Lec steps 3 Havens scrapbook 059

Rice Players on Chem Lec steps 2 Havens scrapbook 058

Rice Players on Chem Lec steps 1 Havens scrapbook 057

This is just a delightful collection and I am so grateful for the chance to study and preserve it.

Bonus: I’ve still got some commencement stuff up my sleeve.


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10 Responses to The Rice Players Third Annual Shakespeare Festival, 1950 something

  1. Doug Williams says:

    Those are some awful big steps at the bottom of the stairway…

  2. Robert Brazille says:

    We enjoyed meeting you, too!

  3. Whit Matteson says:

    May 8th was indeed a Sunday in 1955 (and 1949 and 1960).

  4. Sandy Havens says:

    Mellissa, the three photos (dated 1955) are indeed from the plays described in the flyer. The top and bottom photos are me as Prince Harry from “Henry V.” The middle photo is my roommate Michael Horwitz (’56) as the porter in that famous scene from “McBeth.”

    • marmer01 says:

      I thought that might be Prince Harry! St. Crispin’s Day, right? Oh, band of brothers!

  5. francis eugene 'gene' pratt says:

    Michael Horwitz was in the Rice Follies of our Senior Year.
    He and the statuesque (pronounced ‘very tall’) Ann Norris did a Tarzan and Jane scene.
    Mike entered the famous line “You Tarzan … me Jane”.
    Although that was NOT his intention, he did get a great laugh.
    Who remembers?

  6. Pingback: Balcony Fanfare, 1985 | Rice History Corner

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