Video: Pageant Through a Peephole

THE LIFE AND ADVENTURES OF NICHOLAS NICKLEBY Mobil Showcase Network, Jan. 10-13

The tragedienne Mrs. Crummies, great of girth and spirit, explains to Nicholas why she had to give up her title role in The Blood Drinker: "The audiences, sir," she sighs and smiles, "they could not stand it. It was too... tremendous!"

Modern audiences had no such difficulty with the Royal Shakespeare Company's production of The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby. In London in 1980 and a year later on Broadway, David Edgar's 8½hour adaptation of the Dickens novel met with a...

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