The School for Scandal

The School for Scandal

Sir John Gielgud mounted this production of Sheridan's 18th century comedy, The School for Scandal, in 1937.

Gielgud had been working with the Old Vic company which was staging affordable, cheaply mounted productions and he had recently starred as Hamlet on Broadway. His status as a matinee idol gave him sufficient clout to lease the Queen's Theatre for a season. He intended to develop his ideas about Shakespeare and other classics with a West End budget.

He asked Tyrone Guthrie to direct The School for Scandal (although what we think of as 'directing' was referred to as 'producing' in the 1930s). Gielgud had gathered together a stunning cast, largely borrowed from the Old Vic company. Here we see Rachel Kempson, Gielgud, Athene Seyler and Dorothy Green. Peggy Ashcroft, Alec Guinness and Michael Redgrave were also in the company.