Watching Famous Actresses

[Photo Credit: Henri Mairet (1850-1902), Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons.]

During her first two years in Paris (1896-98), Julia occasionally attended plays with her friends. On 30 May 1898, she wrote to Pierre and Lucy LeBrun: “We went to . . .‘Paméla’ at the Vaudeville, beautifully costumed, and set. . . . Réjane makes a fine Paméla.”
Julia was referring to famed French actress Gabrielle Réjane (1856-1920), standing fourth from the left in this publicity photo from the play. Her starring role as Paméla was based on an actual person, who in the late eighteenth century ran a florist’s shop on the rue de Richelieu. Réjane’s costume is lavishly decorated with flowers.

[Julia Morgan Papers, Special Collections, California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, 2-D-17-12.]