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Grant number like: FT-265463-19

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Marguerite Hailey Rippy
Marymount University (Arlington, VA 22207-4299)

Summer Stipends
Research Programs

[Grant products]

$6,000 (approved)
$6,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
6/1/2019 – 7/31/2019

Orson Welles, Macbeth, and Africa: Collective Genius and the Diaspora

Research leading to publication of a book about the contributions made by African and African American artists to Orson Welles’ 1936 Federal Theater Project production of Shakespeare’s Macbeth.

This project seeks to produce a book-length monograph that would reposition scholarly and general understanding of the production that came to be known as the 1936 “Voodoo” Macbeth. Directed by a youthful Orson Welles, the 1936 "Macbeth" has been widely recounted in theater history as a work of Welles’ budding genius, a product of his collaboration with producer John Houseman and Federal Theatre director Hallie Flanagan. Many of the materials regarding the contributions of the over 100 African and African American participants, however, have yet to be studied alongside the conventional history of this production. This project brings together archival materials from multiple collections to illuminate the contributions of African and African American actors, artists and musicians in the 1936 Federal Theatre Project production of "Macbeth."