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Editor: Frederick Wilkins
Suffolk University, Boston

Vol. V, No. 1
Spring, 1981



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A portrait sculpture of Eugene O'Neill, created in 1967 by Jerome Radin in honor of the opening of StageWest, the resident professional theatre company in Springfield, Massachusetts. For many years it was displayed in the theatre's lobby, and it has also been exhibited in Springfield's Museum of Fine Arts. The portrait, constructed of terra cotta with a bronze patina, is 24 inches in height. The editor is grateful to Hilda Radin, the sculptor's wife, for permitting him to share it with the Newsletter's readers.

Mr. Radin has created sculpted portraits of a number of artists and literary figures--real and fictional--including Bartok, Beethoven, Gershwin, Ravel and Don Quixote. In preparing for projects, the sculptor immerses himself in the life, times and works of the chosen subject--almost becoming that person. The photograph offers moving evidence of his intense and intimate understanding of the essential spirit of Eugene O'Neill.

Mrs. Radin writes, "My husband and I love the statue and we are looking for an appropriate home for it. We feel it should be seen by many people." Anyone interested in learning more about the sculpture, or in providing or suggesting a home worthy of it, can write to the Radins at 71 Plantation Drive in Agawam, MA 01001. Agawam--not the site of Nathaniel Ward's satirical volume, The Simple Cobler of Agawam (whose locale is Ipswich, which was formerly named Agawam too)--is south of Springfield, near the Connecticut border, in western Massachusetts.

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Lunch hour editorial consultations between Fred Wilkins and myself are memorable not only for their content but certainly for their locations as well. Ye Olde Province Tavern, the Arch Tavern, Brandy Pete's and the North Star Bar, to name a few. They are, or were (the first two threw in the towel recently), joints, with the exception of Brandy Pete's, which is a rather tidy saloon catering to stockbrokers and other white collar sorts. And thinking about these editorial bivouacs in beer bespattered booths reminds me that I cannot think of a single publication that I have worked on where what goes on behind the scenes has not been at least as interesting or illuminating as the publication itself. Often, and sadly, this behind-the-scenes business is considerably more fascinating than what is publicly produced. On unsuccessful ventures all signs of personality and character are carefully weeded out, as if by decree, and as a consequence the results are extremely dull things to behold. Good publications do just the opposite. And the O'Neill Newsletter is a case in point.

As the Newsletter officially enters the realm of the Eugene O'Neill Society, it is only appropriate to acknowledge the fact that the excellence and liveliness of this publication are due in a very large way to the efforts of its tireless and gifted editor. Fred Wilkins' impeccable taste and care in editing have never ceased to amaze me. From the very start, the Newsletter has been intelligent, witty and thoroughly enjoyable. Rare for any sort of publication, anywhere, today. Fred's ability to incorporate so much of what makes editing the Newsletter exciting into the Newsletter itself, where it can be enjoyed by the reader, is unique. Indeed, a very special talent. I am sure Newsletter readers will agree with me in saying, as the Newsletter begins its fifth year and volume, that O'Neill scholarship has been served extraordinarily well by Dr. Wilkins; and will share my confidence that his future contributions will be as bright and imaginative.

That said, it is time to put the final touches on the present issue, as press time is nearing. Time, perhaps, for a production meeting at Brandy Pete's, "Where," a bold handwritten sign on the wall proclaims, "the Customer is Always Wrong." But Pete's food is always right--chowders especially. Fred, next Tuesday?

--Marshall Brooks


Unsolicited manuscripts--and I assure the readership that this was such--are always welcome. Thanks, Marshall. Tuesday sounds fine, but as for that promotion . . . ! --Ed.

The Eugene O'Neill Newsletter, Vol. V, No. 1. Copyright (c) 1981 by the Eugene O'Neill Newsletter. Copyright 2011 by Harley J. Hammerman. Editor: Frederick C. Wilkins. Assoc. Editor: Marshall Brooks. Subscriptions: $6/year for individuals in U.S. and Canada, $10/year for libraries and institutions and all overseas subscribers. Only one-year subscriptions are accepted. Back issues are available @ $3 each. Address: The Eugene O'Neill Newsletter, Department of English, Suffolk University, Boston, MA 02114 U.S.A.


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