Finding Number (Click this to view full catalogue structure)DSH31
TitlePapers of Dame Janet Suzman
Extent9 standard boxes
DescriptionComprises material relating to Dame Janet Suzman's theatrical work. Includes material relating to productions of William Shakespeare's 'Antony and Cleopatra', 'Othello', and other plays. Material includes issues of 'The Reader' containing articles relating to Dame Janet Suzman: number 31, Autumn 2008, and number 47, Autumn 2012.

(Acc 2020/28) Material relating to a South African production of 'Hamlet' in 2005, including material relating to the actor Brett Goldin (1977-2006); letter from Ian McKellen dated 27 November 2012 commenting on Suzman's recent book publication; various postcards, greeting cards and correspondence sent to Suzman; printed speech used for 'A Toast to the Immortal Memory' given on Shakespeare's birthday, 22 April 2006, in Stratford-upon-Avon; newspaper cuttings; and other items of correspondence.

(Acc2021/132) Also material relating to the production of ‘The Duchess of Malfi’ by John Webster performed at the Birmingham Repertory Theatre, 3-26 May 1979. Includes sealed reviews with Suzman’s note ‘I never read these reviews – prob [probably] just as well!’; correspondence with the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust concerning Suzman’s appointment as an Honorary Fellow, 2012; papers relating to the publication of Suzman’s work ‘Not Hamlet: meditations on the frail position of women in drama’; script for talk titled ‘Cleopatra and the boys’ delivered as a lecture to the Lockdown University, the Shakespeare Society, The Rose Theatre and the Shakespeare Institute during 2021; programme for ‘Hamlet’ performed at the Baxter Theatre Centre, University of Cape Town, 2005; print out of Trevor Nunn’s response to Mark Rylance’s ‘devotion to the Oxfordian myth’ [Rylance’s belief that Shakespeare’s works were authored by Sir Francis Bacon], 2019; issue of ‘The News Magazine’, London, 18 January 1980 with cover image of Suzman titled ‘The Greeks… a legend comes to life’; four cartoon drawings by [William] Hewison depicting Suzman as Katharina and Michael Williams as Petruchio in ‘The Taming of the Shrew’, Stratford upon Avon, 5 April 1967, and published in ‘Punch’, 12 April 1967; and necklace prop, made from Suzman’s mother’s letter opener, used by the actor John Kani to cut his own jugular in ‘Othello’. With accompanying printed books:
‘The Taming of the Shrew’, William Shakespeare, ‘Midget’ Classics, London: Burgess and Bowes Ltd. With manuscript dedication to Janet Suzman from Michael Williams. ‘Macbeth’, William Shakespeare, 1980. Hungarian language copy with loose inserts;
‘Women in Shakespeare’, Judith Cook, London: Harrap and Co Ltd, 1980. With manuscript dedication to Janet Suzman from the author;
‘Shakespeare’s Women’, Angela Pitt, Newton Abbot: David and Charles (Publishers) Limited, 1981. With manuscript dedication to Janet Suzman from the author;
‘The Kingsmead Heritage’, Margot Bryant, The Kingsmead Foundation: Johannesburg. Presentation copy awarded to Janet Suzman ‘in appreciation on the occasion of her visit to Kingsmead College, 5 October 1987’;
‘Acting with Shakespeare: the comedies’, Janet Suzman, The Applause Acting Series, 1996. With loose inserts and manuscript annotations;
‘Hamlet’, William Shakespeare, Stratford Series, edited by A. C. Horan, Maskew Miller Longman, 18th impression, 2003. With manuscript annotations;
‘Rosalind: a biography of Shakespeare’s immortal heroine’, Angela Thirlwell, London: Oberon Books, 2016. With manuscript dedication to Janet Suzman from the author.
Access ConditionsAccess to all registered researchers
Finding AidsThis collection is currently uncatalogued.
Access StatusOpen
Administrative HistoryDame Janet Suzman, DBE, was born on 9 February 1939 in Johannesburg, South Africa. She trained as an actress and enjoyed a successful early career in the Royal Shakespeare Company, and later reprised many Shakespearean roles on television. She is a niece of Helen Suzman, South African politician and anti-apartheid campaigner. Between 1969 and 1986 she was married to director Trevor Nunn; the couple having one son, Joshua.

Source: Janet Suzman page on Wikipedia, accessed 25 November 2019 via
AcquisitionPresented, August 2017 with later additions presented in 2020 and 2021