Quotations From SARAH BERNHARDT

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  • 1.
    Although all new ideas are born in France, they are not readily adopted there. It seems that they must first commence to prosper in a foreign country.
    Sarah Bernhardt (1845-1923), French actor. The Art of the Theatre, ch. 3 (1924).
  • 2.
    The truth, the absolute truth, is that the chief beauty for the theatre consists in fine bodily proportions.
    Sarah Bernhardt (1845-1923), French actor. The Art of the Theatre, ch. 3 (1924). Written in 1923.

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  • 3.
    The theatre is the involuntary reflex of the ideas of the crowd.
    Sarah Bernhardt (1845-1923), French actor. The Art of the Theatre, ch. 3 (1924).
  • 4.
    He who is incapable of feeling strong passions, of being shaken by anger, of living in every sense of the word, will never be a good actor ...
    Sarah Bernhardt (1845-1923), French actor. The Art of the Theatre, ch. 3 (1924). Written in 1923.

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  • 5.
    The actor is too prone to exaggerate his powers; he wants to play Hamlet when his appearance is more suitable to King Lear.
    Sarah Bernhardt (1845-1923), French actor. The Art of the Theatre, ch. 3 (1924). Written in 1923.
  • 6.
    Permanent success cannot be achieved except by incessant intellectual labour, always inspired by the ideal.
    Sarah Bernhardt (1845-1923), French actor. The Art of the Theatre, ch. 3 (1924).

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  • 7.
    To be a good actor ... it is necessary to have a firmly tempered soul, to be surprised at nothing, to resume each minute the laborious task that has barely just been finished.
    Sarah Bernhardt (1845-1923), French actor. The Art of the Theatre, ch. 3 (1924). Written in 1923.
  • 8.
    I have, thanks to my travels, added to my stock all the superstitions of other countries. I know them all now, and in any critical moment of my life, they all rise up in armed legions for or against me.
    Sarah Bernhardt (1844-1923), French actor. The Memoirs of Sarah Bernhardt, ch. 8 (1977 ed.).

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  • 9.
    ... actors of the first water are not more plentiful than playwrights of genius.
    Sarah Bernhardt (1845-1923), French actor. The Art of the Theatre, ch. 3 (1924). Written in 1923.

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  • 10.
    I have often been asked why I am so fond of playing male parts.... As a matter of fact, it is not male parts, but male brains that I prefer.
    Sarah Bernhardt (1845-1923), French actor. The Art of the Theatre, ch. 3 (1924). Bernhardt played, among other male characters, Hamlet and the title role in L'Aiglon, by Edmond Rostand.
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