[Dame Edith Sitwell and John Freeman's 'Face to Face' BBC TV interview. ] Two items: Autograph Letter Signed ('Edith Sitwell') to producer Hugh Burnett; & Typescript (printer's copy) of the section on the interview in Burnett's book of the series.

Dame Edith Sitwell (1887-1964), iconic poet and critic [Hugh Burnett; John Freeman; Face to Face, BBC Television series]
Publication details: 
Letter with letterhead of Renishaw Hall, near Sheffield, in envelope on which Sitwell gives her address as Castello di Montegufoni, Montagnana, Val di Peso [near Florence, Italy]. 18 August 1959. Typescript undated (for book published in 1964).
SKU: 21084

Two items relating to Sitwell's interview with John Freeman (1915-2014), broadcast in the BBC series 'Face to Face' on 6 May 1959. The two items are from the papers of the programme's producer Hugh Burnett (1924-2011). ONE: Autograph Letter Signed to Burnett. Signed 'Edith Sitwell'. On letterhead of Renishaw Hall, Renishaw, nr. Sheffield. 18 August 1959. 3pp., 12mo. In envelope with Italian stamp and postmark, addressed by Sitwell to 'Hugh Burnett, Esqre. | Television Studio | Lime Grove | London. W.12'. Sitwell writes on the reverse of the envelope: 'from Dame Edith Sitwell, D.B.E | Castello di Montegufoni | Montagnana | Val di Peso | pron: Firenze'. In good condition, with punch holes for ring-binder to the two leaves of the letter, which has a 'TELEVISION REGISTRY' date stamp to the blank reverse of the second leaf. After thanking him for his 'very charming letter' Sitwell writes: 'Of course I understand about the luncheon. I should take a gloomy view of the neutrality of anybody who doesnt seize the opportunity of motoring to the South of France. Your three weeks must have been heavenly, in that weather.' She will 'love to lunch' with him on her return to London. 'And I do hope you will also lunch with me, and that your wife, whom I look forward greatly to meeting, will soon be well enough to come too.' The final paragraph begins: 'Oh the poetry! The poets!! I now get, on an average, two manuscripts, the size of the week's laundry at a Station Hotel in the metropolis, every day, and every page of them preposterous bosh. I am nearer committing murder than I have ever been.' In a postscript she informs him that she will soon be giving a recital at the Edinburgh Festival. TWO: Typed text, prepared for publication (in MS.), of the section on 'DAME EDITH SITWELL' in the book 'Face to Face | Edited and introduced by Hugh Burnett' (Jonathan Cape, 1964). 3pp., foolscap 8vo. In fair condition, lightly aged and worn. Corresponding to the text as published on p.19-20 of the book. With instructions to the typesetter in pencil and red ink. The typescript and published version feature passages not present in the television interview. First, a passage on her relation 'the wicked Lady Cunningham' and flogging; then one on her brother Osbert's Italian home, Castello di Montegufoni; the pronouncement, 'I have an extremely small income – smaller than anyone would think – and I have always earned my own living. I've been excessively poor. I'm always supposed to be extremely rich.'; and lastly, 'My father was rather an odd old gentleman, and during the first war I had to take a job which brought me in twenty-five shillings a week, and two shillings war bonus. I did that partly out of patriotism, but partly because I was too poor to live without it.'