MARK TWAIN TONIGHT! by Hal Holbrook
Kirkus Star

MARK TWAIN TONIGHT!

KIRKUS REVIEW

This is much more than a personal sort of Twain anthology which provides the basis of the brilliant one-man show entitled ""Mark Twain Tonight"" which was a Broadway sellout last season. It is that, to be sure, but there is a section entitled Prologue which is actually more than one third of the whole and gives depth and breadth and length to the reading of the balance of the text. For here is the show in the building- twelve years of it, years that included four years of barnstorming by car, with his wife- the two of them just out of college- many thousands of miles from school auditorium to school auditorium, with a show for two. That there was a Mark Twain item launched the other project. But that took eight more years- years of night clubs and off Broadway spots, of college and women's club programs, of radio and TV and bit parts on the stage, of hardship and headaches, and all the time getting to know Mark Twain, his character, his philosophy, his story, his writings. The unique achievement that is Mark Twain Tonight! is the outcome. The Prologue should come first. It provides guideposts to the reading of the Mark Twain extracts that provide Holbrook's stock from which to draw. It shares the process of ""being"" Mark Twain. It lights the spark of Mark Twain's anger at man's prejudices, and brings out as well Hal Holbrook, the man, something of a philosopher himself. And perhaps it will take readers back to the whole of Mark Twain.

Publisher: Ives Washburn