Hargreaves, Gerald

Tagged: Author

(1881-1972) UK politician, judge, composer, playwright and author, in active service during World War One. He is of some sf interest for his only published play, Atalanta: A Story of Atlantis: A Fantasy with Music (1948) as by His Honour Judge Sir Gerald Hargreaves (see Atlantis), a musical drama based, according to his introduction, on Plato's Critias (circa 350 BCE) and Ignatius Donnelly's Atlantis: The Antediluvian World (1882). The story is not unconfused, and there is no evidence Atalanta was ever staged. The film version, Atlantis, the Lost Continent (1959) directed by George Pal, is unfaithful to the original concept, in which Troy is a satellite of the Atlantean empire, and its fall, and the sinking of the great Island, are woven together. There are interventions from Daedalus's Airship. The cast includes various figures from the Greek myths, plus others of Hargreaves's own coining. His lyrics are indebted to W S Gilbert (1836-1911), and some of his plot turns are topsy-turvy in a Gilbertian manner [see The Encyclopedia of Fantasy under links below]; his music (which takes up 100 pages of text) is unremarkable. For his services as a politician, soldier and judge, he was knighted in 1944. [JC]

Sir Gerald de la Prynne Hargreaves

born Westhoughton, Lancashire: 16 November 1881 (baptized)

died 1972

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