Margaret Mayo  ( born-Lillian Elizabeth Slatten )

1931


Margaret Mayo had close connections with the American film industry: Several of her Broadway plays had been adapted for the silent screen, and her play Polly of the Circus became the first film produced in 1917 by the Goldwyn Company, of which she was a founding member along with her former husband Edgar Selwyn, a Broadway producer.


LM p.1331 rev.

Margaret married to Edgar Selwyn, ( they divorced in the late twenties.)
This is quite likely the kitchen of their home at Harmon on the Hudson where Meher Baba stayed for a month in 1932.

He was a playwright of some distinction at the turn of the century, and early promoter of motion pictures, owning a famous movie house on Times Square, and was a co-founder of MGM ( the "wyn" of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer). He moved to Hollywood in 1929, and also might have  met Baba at the Knickerbocker or Pickfair receptions.

 

Image :  Library of Congress American Memories website

http://www.loc.gov/pictures/resource/cph.3b44820/

The above information was provided by Will Graham

Courtesy of Will Graham ; Edgar Selwyn and Margaret Mayo Selwyn
Courtesy of Will Graham ; Edgar Selwyn and Margaret Mayo Selwyn

1931


The Harmon retreat belonged to the playwright Margaret Mayo.

When she learned why Malcolm and Jean wished to rent it, she donated it for Baba's use. The stone house with red window frames was situated along the Croton River on the Albany Post Road, overlooking a wooded ravine. Baba's room stretched the length of the house on the river side with a balcony from which he could look out over the tree tops.

 

**Margaret Mayo was a successful Broadway playwright and she adapted several of her plays for the silent screen. Her play Polly of the Circus became the first film produced by the Goldwyn Company in 1917.

 

Lord Meher Volume 4, Page 1466

Kitty Davy's sister May Cluse, who was living in Canada, came to see Baba on the 19th of November. The owner of the house, Margaret Mayo, arrived at Harmon the next day.

 

Lord Meher Volume 4, Page 1484

Courtesy of MN Collection
Courtesy of MN Collection

While at Harmon, Baba assigned each person different duties and chalked out a schedule to be followed at the retreat after his departure. Margaret Mayo had been impressed by Baba. For his work, she had agreed to allow him to use the house for a year.

 

Lord Meher Volume 4, Page 1491

In Harmon, the topic of making a film on spirituality was brought up; the theme was according to Baba's explanations on the purpose of creation, the outcome of the universe and the spiritual journey. On December 3rd, Margaret Mayo spoke to Jean and Malcolm about her friend who was a movie producer. She then explained to Baba that she could also write a detailed scenario if points were given to her. Baba immediately took her aside to work on the theme. In about an hour, Baba finished dictating the whole plot – the beginning of creation, the developing stages of evolution, reincarnation and the stories of three characters through five lifetimes to Realization. After reading it to the group, all said it was splendid and it was typed out.

 

Lord Meher Volume 4, Page 1492

 

1898
1898

Later that evening, Margaret Mayo's friend, the movie producer Mr. Artkin, was invited over. Baba's story was read out. Impressed, Artkin said it was a grand idea. "Can it be properly worked out into a movie?" Baba asked him. "Certainly," Artkin assured Baba, and the film was discussed further. This film project was an idea that was to develop over the next few years.

Meher Baba's movie idea was based on the spiritual ' journey. The following adaptation, entitled A Touch of Maya, was given by Baba and used as the basis for several screenplays:

 

 

Lord Meher Volume 4, Page 1493

While at Harmon, on 2 December 1931 Baba assigned each person different duties and chalked out a schedule to be followed at the retreat after his departure. Margaret Mayo had been impressed by Baba. For his work, she had agreed to permit the use of her house for a year, which was to be known as Meherashram.

Norina and Anita were both by now quite enamored of Baba. Nadine, Elizabeth, Malcolm and Jean all had heard his Song and were eager to begin singing it. Baba's purpose of visiting America had been completed as he revealed himself to those who were his. Age marveled at the almost instant surrender of these "new" Western devotees. "Hearts were blooming and lay scattered before the Master's feet like rose petals," Age related.

In Harmon, the topic of making a film on spirituality was brought up for the first time. It would be a topic that would occupy much of Baba's attention over the subsequent few years. The theme of the film was to be according to Baba's explanations of the purpose of creation, the outcome of the universe and the spiritual journey. Margaret Mayo had close connections with the American film industry: Several of her Broadway plays had been adapted for the silent screen, and her play Polly of the Circus became the first film produced in 1917 by the Goldwyn Company, of which she was a founding member along with her former husband Edgar Selwyn, a Broadway producer.

On Thursday, 3 December 1931, Margaret Mayo spoke to Jean and Malcolm about her friend Harry E. Aitken, a movie producer who had worked with the famous director D. W. Griffith. She suggested that he would be a suitable person to organize everything connected with the film, as he was interested in spirituality. She then explained to Baba that she could write a detailed scenario if points were given to her. Baba immediately accepted her offer and began dictating points to her. In about an hour, Baba finished dictating the whole plot — the beginning of creation, the developing stages of evolution, reincarnation and the stories of three characters through five lifetimes to Realization. After reading it to the group, all said it was splendid and it was typed out.

Later that evening, Harry Aitken, 54, was invited over. Baba's story was read out. Impressed, Aitken said it was a grand idea. "Can it be properly worked out [into a movie]?" Baba asked him. "Certainly," Aitken assured him, and the film was discussed further. (Aitken suggested the film be shot in India, and that its opening be there also, with Baba in attendance!) Its suggested title was A Touch of Maya.  


Courtesy of Lord Meher ; page 1331 revised

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


Margaret Mayo
Born November 19, 1882(1882-11-19)
Brownsville, Illinois, United States
Died February 25, 1951(1951-02-25) (aged 68)
Ossining, New York, United States
Occupation Playwright, Screenwriter, Actress

Margaret Mayo, born Lillian Elizabeth Slatten[1] (November 19, 1882, Brownsville, Illinois - February 25, 1951, Ossining, New York), was an American actress, playwright and screenwriter.

Margaret Mayo was a stage actress from 1896 to 1903, when she retired from performing to devote herself to playwriting. Her earliest successes were adaptations of novels: The Marriage of William Ashe (1905) and The Jungle (1907). However, Mayo is best remembered as the author of more original plays such as Polly of the Circus (1907), Baby Mine (1910), Twin Beds (1914), and Seeing Things (1920), written with Aubrey Kennedy. She adapted several of her plays for the silent screen. Her play Polly of the Circus became the first film produced by the Goldwyn Company in 1917, of which she was a founding member along with her former husband Edgar Selwyn. [2] The play was again made into a film in 1932.

Margaret Mayo was instrumental in making housing arrangements for the Indian spiritual teacher Meher Baba at Harmon, near New York City, during his fist visit to America in 1931. She owned and provided the stone house retreat where he stayed on this first trip.