Special Collections Department
Ralph Delauney Papers
The Rose Tattoo
Manuscript Collection Number: 270
Accessioned: Purchases, 1989 and 1990.
Extent: .6 linear ft., and oversize material.
Content: Correspondence, playscript and revisions, contract, bills and receipts, budgets, clippings, notes, itineraries, lists, programs, resume, schedules, and sketches.
Access: The collection is open for research.
Processed: May 1993 by Anita A. Wellner.
Special Collections, University of Delaware Library
Newark, Delaware 19717-5267
Table of Contents
Prior to working on The Rose Tattoo, Delauney was stage manager for productions of the plays Yellow Jack, Broadway, Now is the Winter, Caligula, Farewell Supper, Long Voyage Home, The Killers, Man of Destiny, and Talk in Darkness.
Ralph Delauney also worked as a general assistant on Director Jacobina Caro's Wizard of Oz and on Director Daniel Mann's Declaration. Delauney had further stage experience as an electrician, a props manager, a set designer, and as part of a crew working on stage construction and lights.
As the stage manager Delauney was responsible for arranging for rehearsals (space, schedule, props), securing addresses and phone numbers for cast and crew, preparing a master script, setting up the stage, serving as liaison between director and technical staff, organizing and training the crew, laying out floor plans for staging, compiling master lists (sounds, lights, props, etc.) and distributing scripts and revisions. On opening night he also assumed full responsibility and authority backstage for the run of the show.
Source:Note: Biographical information is derived from the collection.
Scope and Contents Note
Much of the material was created as a result of Delauney's responsibilities as stage manager, especially in assembling what is termed the "master script" or "prompt book." The master script included the playscript plus revisions; a synopsis of the play; lists for props, music and lights, cast names with addresses and phone numbers, and dressing room assignments; as well as instructions for the direction and execution of the play. Developing itineraries and schedules, conveying messages to the cast and technical crew, and securing the set designs were all part of Delauney's daily work as stage manager. Consequently, this collection represents a working file on stage-managing in the 1950s, from hiring to preproduction, through opening night, and continuing through one year of performances.
The playscript, with its numerous revisions, includes over ten variant endings to the play. Tennessee Williams, present during auditions and early rehearsals, as well as for several actual productions, was continually rewriting the ending of the play. Several different endings were used during the Chicago and New York productions. The playscript and revisions are valuable for study of Williams's creative process in writing a play.
The collection also provides a variety of material for studying both the writing and original production of The Rose Tattoo. Written during the Spring and Summer of 1950, The Rose Tattoo was based on Tennessee Williams's autobiographical story, "The Resemblance Between a Violin Case and a Coffin," which was first published in Flair Magazine in February 1950 (see Ms 112, F85 for a copy of this story). The name "Rose" was identified with Williams's sister.
The production of The Rose Tattoo began in May of 1950, while Williams, in Europe at the time, continued work on the script. With Cheryl Crawford as producer and Danny Mann as director, Maureen Stapleton was given the lead role as Rose.
For the New York production, The Rose Tattoo was awarded a Tony as the best play of 1951. Maureen Stapleton and Eli Wallach each won a Tony award for best actresses and best actor, respectively. A Tony was also awarded for the best stage design.
Related collection:MS 112 Tennessee Williams Collection
Series I. Production and Rehearsal Material includes material used during auditions and the rehearsal phase of production.
Series II. Erlanger Theatre, Chicago Production consists of material related to the premiere run of the play in Chicago, from December 29, 1950 to January 27, 1951.
Series III. Martin Beck Theatre, New York Production consists of the material related to the New York rehearsals and performances.
Series IV. Related Material Belonging to Ralph Delauney includes some of his financial papers and a copy of the published version of The Rose Tattoo.
Subseries within each series vary according to type of material. The arrangement in each subseries is chronological.
I. Production and rehearsal material, 1947-1953 1. Correspondence, 1950 Oct 18-Dec 12 2. Playscript and revisions, 1950-1951 3. Master script and related material, 1947-1951 4. Notes by Tennessee Williams, 1950 Nov 9-15 5. Publicity and articles, 1947-1953 II. Erlanger Theatre, Chicago production, 1950 Dec 17-1951 Feb 3 1. Correspondence, 1950 Dec 29-1951 Jan 14 2. Playscript page, 1951 Jan 3 3. Lists, messages, and itinerary, 1950 Dec 25-1951 Jan 30 4. Chicago Stagebills, 1950 Dec 29-1951 Jan 21 5. Publicity and reviews, 1950-1951 III. Martin Beck Theatre, New York production, 1951 1. Correspondence, 1951 Feb 1-May 3 2. Lists, notes, messages, and staging information, 1951 Feb 2-May 20 3. Playbills and programs, 1951 Feb 3-May 20 4. Publicity and reviews, 1951 Jan 14-Aug 22 IV. Related material belonging to Ralph Delauney, 1951-1952
1 Series I. Production and Rehearsal Material, 1947-1953 The production and rehearsal phase, prior to the premiere of The Rose Tattoo on December 29, 1950, occurred primarily between October and December of 1950 in New York City. During this time auditions were held, budgets projected, technical crew hired, the master script assembled, rehearsals begun, and finally the cast and crew moved to Chicago for the premiere. Correspondence, playscript and revisions, material related to the master script, notes by Williams, and publicity material comprise this series. Series I.1. Correspondence, 1950 Oct 18-Dec 12 F1 Correspondence, 1950 Oct 18-Dec 12 Includes letters from the William Morris and Gale Agencies, Bob Downing, Actor's Equity Association, and James Awe. A copy of a letter from Delauney to Aronson concerning set designs originally included two oversize sketches of the set layout, which have been removed to the map case. Series I.2. Playscript and Revisions of The Rose Tattoo, 1950-1951 In addition to the third draft of Williams' The Rose Tattoo, written during the summer of 1950, numerous revisions (including ten alternative endings) are present. This script was part of Delauney's master script used during his stage management of the production in 1950 and 1951. It varies from the printed edition. F2 Playscript with Revisions and Prompt Script, 1950-1951 Binder contains a typescript of the third draft of The Rose Tattoo (summer 1950), ten typescript endings for the play (each with dates for when it was tried during rehearsals or during the Chicago and New York performances), and a typescript of Ralph Delauney's prompt script as of May 1951. Many of the 305 pages bear Delauney's autograph notes. F3 "Original" Beginning of Act II, 1950 Jan 2 Four pages of typescript with autograph deletions. F4 Additions to Script, [1950-1951] Four pages of typescript with autograph additions, possibly by Tennessee Williams. F5 "Revised Ending,"  Two page typescript of a revised ending bearing an autograph note to Danny Mann reading: "Danny--please mail me a carbon of this--suggest you try it Fri. or Sat. or when I come back next Tuesday. Tenn." F6 [Revised] Ending,  One page typescript ending bearing: "note: author reserves right to remove this ending and revert to the former if it does not appear suitable to him." Series I.3. Master Script and Related Material, 1947-1951 Portions of Delauney's master script and other material related to his work as stage manager for The Rose Tattoo are included here. One item titled "Responsibilities of Stage Manager During Rehearsal Period" identifies what the master script included (see F7). Material is arranged chronologically. F7 "Responsibilities of Stage Manager During Rehearsal Period," 1947 Jan This description of duties was distributed at the Actor's Lab, Las Palmas Theater, in January 1947 and served as a guideline for Delauney. F8 Interview Notes and Schedules, 1950 Oct 27-Dec 6 List of scenes for readings and schedules. F9 "The Rose Tattoo: Property List," 1950 Nov 19 Typescript list includes furniture, set dressings, set props, and hand props, bearing autograph changes. F10 "The Rose Tattoo: Synopsis of Play," 1950 Nov 22 Typescript indicates time sequences, music and sound, movements, intermissions, lighting, and the entrances and exits of characters. F11 Delauney's Contract and Resume, 1950 Nov 24 Contract removed to oversize section. F12 "The Rose Tattoo: Music and Sound List," 1950 Nov 26 Typescript and carbon copies of list. F13 Schedules of Meetings & Rehearsals, 1950 Dec 5-14 Includes a list of rehearsal dates, times, and theater locations, as well as a list of production meetings. Also a list of the technical crew, a sketch of City Center Rehearsal Hall, and pages from Delauney's calendar for December 1950 are included here. F14 Production and Operating Estimates and Receipts, 1950 Dec 8-1951 Feb 6 Includes budget estimates and a list of purchases for reimbursement. F15 "Equity Rules That Apply to All Rehearsals," 1950 Dec 13 List of rules read to cast of The Rose Tattoo by Delauney. F16 "The Rose Tattoo Company Itinerary," 1950 Dec 20-26 Typescript itinerary of the company's transport from New York to Chicago, signed by John Yorke. Also includes shipping labels. F17 Lists of Cast,  One copy lists cast in order of appearance on stage. A second series of loose leaf pages lists cast with addresses, phone numbers, and the number of the script assigned to each. F18 Notes and Clippings,  Autograph comments on the action of the play and staging, possibly by the director. Also includes clippings of roses and initials for a logo for The Rose Tattoo. 2 Series I.4. Notes by Tennessee Williams, 1950 Nov 9-15 Notes by Williams taken during rehearsals and possibly during the readings for parts. Also includes a list of actors and several sketches. F19 List of Actors,  Autograph list made by Williams. F20 Sketches and Notes, 1950 Nov 9-15 Thirteen pages of notes about actors and the play, as well as several sketches by Williams, probably during rehearsals. Series I.5. Publicity and Articles, 1947-1953 A variety of clippings and tear sheets related to Tennessee Williams, his plays, including one commenting on the production of The Rose Tattoo. F21 Clippings and Tear sheets, 1947-1953 Several items removed to oversize section. 2 Series II. Erlanger Theatre, Chicago, Production, 1950 Dec 17-1951 Feb 3 After rehearsals in New York, the company moved the production to Erlanger Theatre in Chicago on December 25 and 26, 1950. The world premiere of The Rose Tattoo occurred at the Erlanger on December 29. The play closed its Chicago run on January 27, 1951, after 35 performances. The production was then moved to New York. Includes programs, correspondence, publicity and reviews, pages of script, and notes by Delauney. Series II.1. Correspondence, 1950 Dec 29-1951 Jan 14 F22 Letters and Telegrams, 1950 Dec 29-1951 Jan 14 Includes telegrams from Tennessee Williams and Cheryl Crawford, a letter from Wolfe Kaufman summarizing the Chicago reviews of the play, a letter from Delauney to Boris Aronson regarding the set design, a page with an inscription to Delauney from Rosanna San Marco, and letters about groups planning to attend the play. Series II.2. Playscript Pages, 1951 Jan 3 F23 "Original" Top of Act One, 1951 Jan 3 Two pages of typescript for the beginning of Act I, with autograph notes by Delauney and Tennessee Williams. Series II.3. Lists, Messages, and Itinerary, 1950 Dec 25-1951 Jan 30 The lists were probably part of the master script. F24 Lists Related to the Cast and Crew, 1950 Dec 25-31 The lists includes names and hotel addresses of the cast and crew, dressing room assignments, order of appearance on stage, check-in for the December 31 performance, and form for timing each scene of the play. F25 Delauney's Messages to Company, 1950 Dec 29-1951 Jan 30 Eight messages posted for company regarding rehearsals, first aid, parties, and other information. F26 Poster Invitation, 1951 Jan 24 Autograph poster from Tennessee Williams inviting the cast and crews to a party at Gibbys (Chicago) on January 24th. F27 Itinerary for Company's Return to New York, 1951 Jan 27 Feb 3 Outlines movement of company from Chicago to New York, as well as the rehearsal and performance schedule for the week of January 29-February 3. Signed by Sal Mineo, Eli Wallach, and other members of the cast. Series II.4. Chicago Stagebills, 1950 Dec 29- 1951 Jan 21 F28 Chicago Stagebills, 1950 Dec 29-1951 Jan 21 The Stagebill for the week of December 29 bears the autographs of some of crew and cast on the title page. A second Stagebill is for the week of January 21. Series II.5. Publicity and Reviews, 1950-1951 Consists of an advertising proof, as well as clippings and photocopies of reviews and articles regarding The Rose Tattoo. F29 Proof for The Rose Tattoo Advertisement, 1950 Dec 29 Camera-ready proof for the advertisement for the world premiere of The Rose Tattoo. F30 Reviews and Advertisements, 1950 Dec 17-1951 Dec 31 Clippings and photocopies of reviews of the Erlanger performances, advertisements for the play, and related articles. 2 Martin Beck Theatre, New York, Production, 1951 After the performances in Chicago, the company returned to New York City and opened on February 3, 1951 at the Martin Beck Theatre. The play continued for 307 performances before closing on October 27, 1951. Includes correspondence, lists, notes, messages, programs, publicity, and reviews. Series III.1. Correspondence, 1951 Feb 1-May 3 F31 Correspondence, 1951 Feb 1-May 3 Consists of opening night telegrams to cast and crew from Tennessee Williams, Marlon Brando's parents, and others. An invitation to the Tony Awards and correspondence regarding groups attending the play are also included. Series III.2. Lists, Notes, Messages, and Staging Information, 1951 Feb 2-May 20 Various notes and messages to the company, most of which was generated by Delauney. F32 Messages to the Company, 1951 Feb 2-Apr 10 Posted messages from Delauney regarding photograph opportunities, emergencies, scene timing, a new goat, and parties. F33 Notes on Photographs, 1951 Feb 5 Delauney's notes regarding the set-ups for photographs for Life magazine article on The Rose Tattoo. F34 Lists Related to the Performances, 1951 Feb 3-May 20 Lists include dressing room assignments, sign-in sheets, the timings of scenes for February 3 performance, and blank timing sheets. F35 Sign-in for Readings, 1951 Mar 30 Includes names and telephone numbers for individuals reading for parts in the play. F36 Lists of Cast and Crew, 1951 May 7 Includes names and telephone numbers on two lists. Series III.3. Playbills and Programs, 1951 Feb 3- May 20 F37 The Playbill for the Martin Beck Theatre: The Rose Tattoo, 1951 Feb 3-May 7 Three copies for various dates. 2 Series III. Martin Beck Theatre, New York (cont'd) Series III.2. Playbills and Programs (cont'd) F38 Programs for The Rose Tattoo, 1951 Feb 3-May 20 Three single sheet programs for various performances at the Martin Beck Theatre, including a special performance to benefit "The Equity Welfare Fund" and "The Actor's Fund of America." F39 Souvenir Book for The Rose Tattoo,  Written by Wolfe Kaufman, this book includes biographical sketches of Tennessee Williams, Cheryl Crawford, Daniel Mann, as well as of the cast and some crew of The Rose Tattoo, and scenes from the play. Series III.4. Publicity and Reviews, 1951 Jan 14- Aug 22 Includes clippings and photocopies of reviews, advertisements, and articles related to The Rose Tattoo at the Martin Beck Theatre. F40 Reviews, Articles, and Advertisements, 1951 Jan 14- Feb 28 F41 Copy of The New Yorker, 1951 Feb 24 Includes articles about Maureen Stapleton. F42 Reviews and Advertisements, 1951 Mar 3-Aug 22 Series IV. Related Material Belonging to Delauney, 1951-1952 F43 Copy of The Rose Tattoo, 1951 Mar 27 First edition of The Rose Tattoo (New York: New Directions, 1951) inscribed by Tennessee Williams to Delauney. Book removed for cataloging for Special Collections. Folder contains a photocopy of the inscription. F44 Financial Papers, 1950-1951 Receipts, list of salary checks, tax withholdings, and expenses for 1951. Also includes Delauney's membership card for the Screen Actors Guild.
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