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January 9, 2013

Harry Taft (fl. late 19th/early 20th Century), English music hall comedian,
billed as ‘The Musical Tramp’
(photo: Langfier, Glasgow, circa 1900)

William Jerome and company in A Jay in New York, including the Bondells, Hayes & Bandy, Maude Nugent and Harry Taft, Funke Opera House, Lincoln, Nebraska, February 1898
‘The Funke opera house on Wednesday and Thursday nights, February 23 and 24, will offer William Jerome’s Herald Square comedians presenting A Jay in New York, which is said to be one long continuous laugh. The story of the play illustrates the mishaps of a countryman’s first visit to the metropolis and his trials and tribulations while in Greater New York. The company includes such clever people as William Jerome, who in low comedy work stands excelled; the Bondells in laughable sketch, Hayes and Bandy, singers and dancers, W.C. Davies, the funniest of all Irish comedians; Maude Nugent, the clever songstress, Wilson and Massoney, the beau ideal of farce comedy in a series of pretty songs and dancers, Harry Taft the phenomenal whistler and many others. All who wish to enjoy an evening of music, song and comedy should not fail to see A Jay in New York. Wednesday night two ladies or one lady and gentleman will be admitted on one 50-cent ticket if bought before 7 p.m. Seats on sale Tuesday, 10 a.m. Princes 15, 25, 35 and 50 cents.’
(The Evening News, Lincoln, Nebraska, Saturday, 19 February 1898, p.4c)

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