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Enjoyed Toronto Premiere of Robertson Davies Play

As I’ve noted several times already in this space, Robertson Davies is one of my literary heroes. His novels were among the first to show me that literary prose, compelling stories, and deeply developed characters could coexist with a heaping helping of humour. John Irving also helped enlighten me on that score. That Robertson Davies and I appear together on the list of Leacock Medal Winners (he in 1955, for Leaven of Malice) still sends a tremor through me when I think of it. In December 1995, shortly after his death, my wife and I attended Robertson Davies’ memorial service in Convocation Hall at the University of Toronto. It was the first time I’d ever laid eyes on Douglas Gibson, Davies’ longtime editor, and miraculously, now mine. Last night, some 14 years later, my wife and I attended Robertson Davies: The Peeled I at the wonderful Hart House Theatre, just across the quadrangle from Convocation Hall. It was a one man show featuring Reed Needles as RD. He bears a striking resemblance to the great writer. We thoroughly enjoyed the play. It only runs for a couple days, so if you’re a Davies fan and are anywhere near Toronto, check it out.

Here’s the photo of Robertson Davies that hangs in our third floor library, supervising my writing. Whenever I hit a dry spell or am struggling with a sentence, I look up at this photo for inspiration. Then I get back at it…

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