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Miss Pilgrim's Autographs

"The audiences at the Vic were very lively," John Gielgud once recalled. "There was an old lady called Miss Pilgrim who had been a fan of the Old Vic for years. She always sat in the gallery and at the end of the performance she would sing 'God Save the King' in a very loud cracked voice. She had a wall eye. We all knew her by sight, and she used to write letters to us. A year or two after I left when Tyrone Guthrie took over the direction, stars like Charles Laughton, Athene Seyler, Flora Robson and James Mason were in the company. Miss Pilgrim went to the stage door one night and asked everyone to sign their autographs for her as they came out of the theatre. The next day they found that the paper had been folded over and on the other side she had written a demand to the Governors that Tyrone Guthrie should be sacked."
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