The Taming of the Shrew, 7-14 January 1922, Image 2 of 3
The Characters of the Play
Baptista Minola, a wealthy notable of Padua.
[annotated] Laurance Olivier
Katherina and Bianca, his daughters.
Gremio, an elderly gentleman of Padua, (suitor for Bianca)
Hortensio, a youthful gentleman of Padua (suitor for Bianca),
A young Moor, attendant upon Katherine.
Pages in the household of Baptista.
Vincentio, a wealthy notable of Pisa.
Lucentio, his son, a student at the University of Padua.
Tranio and Biondello, body servant and page to Lucentio.
Petruchio, a country gentleman of the neighbourhood of Verona. [annotated] Heales.
Grumio, his body servant.
Curtis, Joseph, Nathaniel, Nicholas, and A Cook, his servants
A Wealthy Widow, for long years enamoured of Hortensio.
At this presentation of the Play the audience is seated like the personages of the Induction, in a chamber in the mansion of a Lord.
The action will be heralded by three blasts of a trumpet:-
At the first blast the audience is requested to be seated and silent.
At the second blast the Pages will enter and arrange the scene.
At the third blast the Action will begin.
THE PLAY has been shorted by the omission of portions of the underplot, the story of Bianca and her lovers, which was taken from Gascoigne's English version of Ariosto's "I suppositi," and acted at Gray's Inn in 1566. The text has been re-arranged to suggest that Bianca is married secretly in St. Luke's Church during the turmoil caused by the strange nuptials of Katherine and Petruchio. Shakespeare is held to be largely answerable for the portions of the play which have been retained, those concerning Katherine and Petruchio. This main plot is a revision of an earlier work by an unknown author, "A pleasant and conceited historie called The Taming of a Shrew."
The action of the Play opens in the streets of Padua, before an entrance to Hortensio's house. It is continued in an ante-chamber and a chamber of the mansino of Baptista Minola, which overlooks the Church of the Carmine. Twice a momentary closing of the curtains indicates the lapse of time. After an interval of twenty minutes the action is resumed at Petruchio's country house, near Verona. It ends in Padua, in the chamber of Baptista's house.
The scenery and the decoration have been designed and executed by the Precentor. All the dresses have been designed by the Precentor, and executed by the Matron of the Choristers. The Precentor whishes to express his deep obligation to his friend Mr. W.H.Gelson, deputy Vica's Warden of All Saints', who has placed his artistic skill at the service of the production with unwearied kindness.
© Image copyright The National Trust 2023