Katharine Hepburn as Amazon warrior princess Antiope & Colin Keith-Johnston as Theseus in stage production of The Warrior’s Husband (1932) (Corbis)
Katharine Hepburn as Amazon warrior princess Antiope in stage production of The Warrior’s Husband (1932)
“We opened cold at the Morosco Theatre in New York. I had an entrance down a narrow stairway. It was about 20 steps and steep. I had a stag over my shoulder. A tight tunic made of metal links. Beautiful silver leather shin guards showing the leg to a good advantage, and a silver shield and a high silver helmet, and a cape. A great costume. And I was very surefooted. So the fact that the stairs were only about three and a half feet wide with a high narrow step and had no railings did not bother me.
And anyway, I did not mind risking my life for fame.
I leapt down the stairs, three or more steps at a time…rounded the corner…one jump for the last four steps…threw the stag on the ground and landed on one knee. The audience, of course, burst into applause. They could hardly do anything else. I had all but asked for it. But I was unaware. I was just full of the joy of life and opportunity and a wild desire to be absolutely fascinating. At that point in my progress, I was sailing through the air anyway – down a stair – up a stair – no guardrails. Hell, no stair whatsoever…no matter – life – joy – youth. “
-Katharine Hepburn, in her autobiography Me
Vivien Leigh as Lady Macbeth in a publicity still for a 1955 production of Macbeth at the Shakespeare Memorial Theatre.
Katharine Hepburn as Tracy Lord in the theater program for the Broadway production of The Philadelphia Story (1939)