Thursday, May 29, 2014

Transformations. From a sculpture to a selfie.

 In ancient Greek mythology, Pygmalion fell in love with one of his sculptures, which then came to life.

In 1505 Du Pré Antoine Vérard made a woodcut of Pygmalion and his sculpture.

Ovid retold the myth in 5 AD in his collection of books Metamorphoses or "Books of Transformations". 

Metamorphōseōn libri reprint of 1556.

The general idea of transformation of that myth was a popular subject for Victorian era English playwrights. W. S. Gilbert wrote a successful play based on the story called Pygmalion and Galatea (1871).

Gilbert's play opened at the Haymarket Theatre in London on 9 December 1871.
It ran for a very successful 184 performances.

George Bernard Shaw (1856 – 1950) also wrote his version of Pygmalion, an operetta - which formed the basis of the famous musical and film My Fair Lady.

Shaw's Pygmalion was published in 1910.

My Fair Lady, the film, depicts arrogant phonetics professor Henry Higgins as he wagers that he can transform a flower girl Eliza Doolittle and turn her Cockney accent into a proper English one, thereby making her presentable in high society of Edwardian London.

The original Broadway poster 1956.

The Warner Bros film was released in 1964 with a $17 million budget.

A 2014 comedy series, Selfie, is a modern adaptation of this play, will debut in ABC's fall line up. It features Karen Gillan as Eliza Dooley, a recently dumped and viral sensation socialite that after being humiliated across the web, wishes to turn her life around, with the help of her arrogant co-worker and marketing specialist, Henry.