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Calista Collection


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Mrs. Mary Ann Yates, radiantly portraying Calista in Nicholas Rowe's 'The Fair Penitent' at Drury Lane Theatre in 1760, captivated audiences with her heartfelt performance. Her likeness, as depicted in Ackermann's Repository of Arts, mirrors the celestial beauty of Ursa Minor, Cassiopeia, Tarandus, Cepheus, and Draco in the Constellations (Plate II). Anne Brunton, a contemporary actress, may have also graced the stage as Calista, yet it is Siddons' interpretation that remains etched in the annals of theatre history. A man and woman from the enchanting Island of Santorini echo the tragic love story and Manlius, as the stars above seem to bear witness to their timeless devotion.