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Elliot Norton Reviews; American Premiere Stage II


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Elliot Norton Reviews
American Premiere Stage II
Program Number


Series Description

Boston theatre critic Elliot Norton interviews prominent actors, directors and producers on their craft. (Aired from October, 1958 to 1982. Winner of both Peabody and Tony Awards.) Series release date: 1958

Program Description

Elliot Norton interviews actor Julia Newton and playwright/actor Cliff Robertson about The VIP, the final one-act play in a series by the American Premiere Stage at the Hasty Pudding Theater in Cambridge. Robertson is best known for his film roles, including his Oscar winning role in the 1968 film Charly, although he started out in the theater. In The VIP, Robertson plays a very important businessman who quizzes his executive assistant (Newton) about her private life at the end of an airport conference while waiting to board a plane. During this chat, he finds out some unexpected and unwanted information about himself and about her. Robertson talks about how this play is a revision of one of the sections of his first produced play, The VIPs, which he wrote for a summer stock company in East Hampton. He talks about his writing experience, including writing for a newspaper before he began acting. Robertson talks about what he plans to do in the future. If he does not get acting jobs, he will continue to write and also make speeches around the country about corruption in Hollywood, based on his experience in a Hollywood scandal he refers to as “Hollywoodgate.” Newton talks about the working with two different actors playing the same role: Cliff Robertson and Jess Cain, who plays Robertson’s role on Tuesday nights. Robertson talks about how he writes about elements of the world he is familiar with, including film, theater, television, and always tries to use a sense of humor and a viability in his writing. Robertson also talks about his experience in farce and light comedy and his resistance to playing only one type of role.

Director: Joanna Lu

Asset Type

Broadcast program

Media Type


Talk Show
Performing Arts
Chicago: “Elliot Norton Reviews; American Premiere Stage II,” 12/11/1981, WGBH Media Library & Archives, accessed January 23, 2019, http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_694F817044C34C95A5E76B4C7D5192E7.
MLA: “Elliot Norton Reviews; American Premiere Stage II.” 12/11/1981. WGBH Media Library & Archives. Web. January 23, 2019. <http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_694F817044C34C95A5E76B4C7D5192E7>.
APA: Elliot Norton Reviews; American Premiere Stage II. Boston, MA: WGBH Media Library & Archives. Retrieved from http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_694F817044C34C95A5E76B4C7D5192E7
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