Fonds P0138 - Lawrence Sabbath fonds

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Title proper

Lawrence Sabbath fonds

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  • Textual record
  • Graphic material
  • Sound recording

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  • Source of title proper: Title based on the content of the fonds.

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Issuing jurisdiction and denomination (philatelic)

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  • 1960-1992 (Creation)
    Sabbath, Lawrence

Physical description area

Physical description

2.08 m of textual records
1 m of photographs
10 sound recordings

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Name of creator

(May 25, 1915 - June 29, 1993)

Biographical history

Lawrence Sabbath was born in Montreal May 25, 1915, and died in Montreal June 29, 1993. He studied arts at Queen's University and law at McGill University. He was a drama and visual arts critic for The Montreal Star 1957-1979, The Montreal Gazette1979- 1987, and for other newspapers and magazines including the Toronto Star, the New York Times, Saturday Night, and Vie des arts. He was the first anglophone theatre critic to develop a consistent pattern of coverage for French-language theatre, to bring its achievements to readers outside Quebec, and to draw to the attention of Quebecers the accomplishments of francophone companies and performers outside Quebec. He was the first critic to recognize the enormous talent of playwright Michel Tremblay, whose first works were criticized for their use of Quebec vernacular. Lawrence Sabbath also gave talks on art and drama on television and radio, and gave courses in university and high schools. He was awarded a médaille d'or by the Université de Montréal in 1960 in recognition of his accomplishments. In 1990 he received the Imperial Oil Award for Excellence in Arts Journalism.

Custodial history

The fonds was transferred from Concordia University's Records Management and Archives Department to Concordia University Libraries' Special Collections April 14, 2016, May 10, 2016, and June 8, 2016.

Scope and content

The fonds provides information on French-language theatre and visual arts in Montreal and elsewhere from the late 1950s through the 1980s.

The fonds contains the manuscript of an unpublished history of French theatre in Quebec, manuscripts of articles and talks, theatre programs, theatre photographs, clippings, and other documents. For instance, there are files on Montreal theatre productions (e.g., Théâtre du Rideau Vert and Théâtre de Quat'sous), authors (e.g., Gratien Gélinas and Michel Tremblay), and actors (e.g., Denise Pelletier).

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Physical condition

Immediate source of acquisition

The documents were donated to the Concordia University Archives by Rachel Sabbath, widow of Lawrence Sabbath, in 1999.


Language of material

  • English
  • French

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    Most of the material is in English. Some documents are in French

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