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Papers of a theatrical producer and theater manager. Scripts, correspondence, contracts, and financial records of plays produced or considered for production form the largest portion of the collect...
Papers of a theatrical producer and theater manager. Scripts, correspondence, contracts, and financial records of plays produced or considered for production form the largest portion of the collection. Of these, files on "Decision" (1944), "Juno and the Paycock" (1940), "Kindred" (1939), and "Miss Liberty" (1949) are the most notable. Several boxes concern the Margaret Webster companies of which Choate was business manager and partner. These contain correspondence with Webster and others, contracts and bookings, publicity, annotated scripts, some production information, and company journals. Added to this section by David Fennema are research correspondence, interviews with members of the Margaret Webster Shakespeare Company, and a microfilm copy of portions of the Webster Papers at New York Public Library.
Personal papers include general letters, contracts, miscellaneous biographical records, a scrapbook concerning his eulogy of S. N. Behrman, and brief papers of two groups of which he was an officer: the Independent Citizens Committee of the Arts, Sciences, and Professions and the Stop Censorship Committee. The folder on the censorship committee, which was concerned with the Hollywood blacklist caused by the investigations of HUAC, includes a tape of a 1948 meeting at which Florence Eldridge, Jose Ferrer, Moss Hart, Albert Maltz, Burgess Meredith, and Margaret Webster spoke.
There is also a group of correspondence, financial records, and a magazine article concerning Choate's experiences with the Old Vic Theatre. Prominent correspondents scattered through the professional papers include Barry Fitzgerald, Moss Hart, Robert Edmond Jones, Elia Kazan, Alfred Lunt, Burgess Meredith, Sir Laurence Olivier, and Geraldine Page. Correspondence, 1938-1953, with Irish playwright John Vincent Carroll and co-producer Arthur Shields refers to productions on which they collaborated.