Vivien Leigh: Vinegar and Hot Water

Interview with Tennessee Williams
Conducted by James Grissom
New Orleans

Talent that is not honed against the sharp blade of some adversity is almost inevitably bland, if existent at all. Talent is born out of friction, fear, flight. We fight to get away from something--an illness; abuse; abandonment. A perfectly happy person--if one exists--sees no reason to dream or run. Vivien [Leigh] for instance, awoke every day seeking escape from so many things, and she poured everything into the arrangement of flowers; the making of lunch; the performance of a part; the setting of things on a table. She was on the run, baby. All the time. And the talent shone like the jewels she cleaned with vinegar and hot water. Vinegar and hot water! There's a title.

© 2016 James Grissom


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