San Francisco theater company, Word for Word perform a few scenes from Cornell Woolrich's Angel Face, a suspense-driven story from the pages of the famous pulp magazine, Black Mask. Angel Face is a wisecracking chorine with a beautiful face using all her charms to save her brother from a date with the electric chair. (Running Time: 7:48)
In Angel Face, Word for Word never lets up with this thriller by Cornell Woolrich, the godfather of noir. A forgotten noir gem, Angel Face is a suspense-driven pulp story from the pages of Black Mask. Angel Face is a wisecracking chorine with a beautiful face, a survivor who climbed up from the bottom rung through one speakeasy after another. Suddenly her life becomes unhinged by a murder. In a classic Woolrich plotline, she joins forces with a cop too tough to be crooked, and together they race the clock in an attempt to find a killer.
Angel Face runs August 10 - September 2, 2007 at Project Artaud Theater. For tickets and information visit zspace.org.
Cast:Angel Face: Laura LowryNick Burns: John FlanaganMilton: Paul Finocchiaro Rocco, Chick, The Manager: Danny WolohanDramaturg: Randall Homan
Directed by Stephanie Hunt and presented by Word for Word.
Cornell Woolrich (a.k.a. William Irish and George Hopley) was born Cornell George Hopley-Woolrich in 1906. Known as the "Edgar Allen Poe of the 20th century," Woolrich, like Poe, led a fragmented and troubled life. He moved often as a child, suffered through parental divorce, and ultimately married the daughter of a Hollywood movie mogul (whom he adored), only to have her annul the marriage when she discovered that he was a closeted homosexual. For the next twenty-five years, Woolrich lived in a conflicted love-hate relationship with his mother. Even as he wrote his best work, Woolrich decayed emotionally and physically, eventually losing a leg to gangrene and becoming an alcoholic. His widely quoted aphorism, “First you dream, then you die,” sums up both his dark worldview and many of his plots, and also provides a clue to his undisputed mastery of suspense.
As the most prolific of the Noir writers, Woolrich is considered by many to be the godfather of the genre, and more films have been made from his work than from the work of any other Noir writer, including Hitchcock's Rear Window and Truffaut's La Mariée Etait en Noir (The Bride Wore Black). Following his mother's death in 1957, Woolrich's physical decline accelerated, and he died of a stroke in 1968, leaving behind two dozen novels and over 200 short stories.