“The next play I saw, some years after Hamlet, was The Philadelphia Story, starring my other favorite, Katharine Hepburn. Again I was nested in the balcony, but the atmosphere in the theatre was totally different from what it had been for Gielgud. There was the excitement of seeing a movie star in the flesh — live — onstage. And because the play was billed as a comedy, the audience entered in the theatre with different attitudes.
Katharine Hepburn was mysterious, wonderful — offering her considerable self and her incredible personality that was totally there for you even in the second balcony. She was so beautiful — and so funny and so touching. And the play was good and funny. The leading men were new names to me — Joseph Cotten, Van Heflin. Shirley Booth played the second female lead. Hepburn’s clothes were floating, graceful — the theatre was filled with laughter. To be able to give such joy!
Would I ever be able to do that? It was one thing to make people in a room laugh, especially relatives. But to do the same for strangers was quite another. Katharine Hepburn that afternoon made me glad to be alive — and sure that being an actress was the only goal in life.” — Lauren Bacall