Posts Tagged ‘Frank E. Tours’


Ellaline Terriss as the Duc de Richelieu in The Dashing Little Duke, Hicks Theatre, London, 1909

April 8, 2014

two postcard photographs of Ellaline Terriss (1871-1971), English actress and singer, star of musical comedy
(photos: Foulsham & Banfield, London, 1909)

These two postcards, serial nos. 11509 F and 11530 A in the Rotary Photographic Series, published in London during 1909 by the Rotary Photographic Co Ltd, show Ellaline Terriss (left) as she appeared as the Duc de Richelieu in the musical play, The Dashing Little Duke, by Miss Terriss’s husband, Seymour Hicks, with lyrics by Ardian Ross and music by Frank E. Tours. The production, the cast of which also included Hayden Coffin, Courtice Pounds, Elizabeth Firth and Coralie Blythe, opened at the Hicks Theatre (now the Gielgud), London, on 17 February 1909 following an out of town trial at the Theatre Royal, Nottingham. It ran for a disappointing 95 performances. The postcard on the right shows Miss Terriss in private life with a ‘Duc de Richelieu’ doll.


Phyllis Dare as Peggy in The Dairymaids, 1907-1908

October 8, 2013

Phyllis Dare (1890-1975), English actress, singer and star of musical comedy as she appeared in The Dairymaids, a farcical musical play, with music by Paul Rubens and Frank E. Tours, 1907-1908
(photo: Foulsham & Banfield, London, 1907/08)

The Dairymaids was first produced by Robert Courtneidge at the Apollo Theatre, London, on 14 April 1906, with Carrie Moore in the leading role of Peggy. The piece ran for 239 performances and closed on 8 December 1906. Courtneidge organized various tours of The Dairymaids, including one for the autumn of 1907 which began at the Gaiety Theatre, Douglas, Isle of Man, on Monday, 19 August, with Phyllis Dare playing Peggy. Miss Dare was obliged to abandon her appearances for two weeks (Belfast and Sheffield) because of laryngitis, when the part of Peggy was taken by Violet Lloyd.

After a break during the Christmas season of 1907/08, during which Phyllis Dare appeared with Carrie Moore, Gwennie Hasto, Esta Stella, Rosie Berganine, John Humphries, Dan Rolyat, Stephen Adeson and Fred Leslie junior in the pantomime Cinderella at the Theatre Royal, Birmingham, she was again seen as Peggy in The Dairymaids. The production opened at the Queen’s Theatre, London, on 5 May 1908 for a run of 83 performances and closed on 18 July 1908.

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‘LONDON, May 13 [1908]… . Revival of The Dairymaids this week at the Queen’s, the newest of London theaters, brings up that precocious little actress, Phyllis Dare, who, although she has been an established London favorite for three years, is only 19 years old. She has more ”puppy” adorers than any other woman on the English stage. The junior ”Johnnydom” goes mad over her, assures her of a well-filled house whenever she appears, and buys her postcards in thousands. It was the fair haired Phyllis who was summoned back from boarding school in Belgium when only 17 years of age to assume Edna May’s part in The Belle of Mayfair, when that independent American actress threw up her part because of the importance given to Camille Clifford, the original ”original” Gibson girl. The papers made so much of the fact that the little Phyllis’s studies had been interrupted by the siren call of Thespis that she packed the playhouse for many weeks with a curious public, many of whom had never before heard her name. Now I hear that Miss Dare will shortly essay the role of Juliet at a special matinee to be arranged by Robert Courtneidge, her manager.’
(Deseret Evening News, Salt Lake City, Utah, Saturday, 23 May 1908, p. 16c)


Lily Elsie, Gabrielle Ray, Zena Dare and Grace Pinder, 1906

August 9, 2013

Lily Elsie (1886-1962), Gabrielle Ray (1883-1973), Zena Dare (1887-1975), English musical comedy actresses, and Grace Pinder (1884-1932), Canadian-born English musical comedy actress, in an episode from their song, ‘I Should So Love to be a Boy,’ written by C.H. Bovill, with music by Frank E. Tours, from the The Little Cherub, produced at the Prince of Wales’s Theatre, London, on 13 January 1906.
(photo: Bassano, London, 1906)

Girls have a rotten time! –
There’s not the slightest doubt of it!
Boys have sport
Of every sort,
But we are always out of it!

I should so love to be a boy!
I’d wear check suits
And big brown boots,
Then I could ride
A horse astride;
If only I were built that way!

No girl who has to wear
A corset to support her back
Can hope to play
At ‘footer,’ eh?
And be a great three-quarter back!
(published by Chappell & Co Ltd, 1906)

‘The national love of football is the subject of a song incident in The Little Cherub at the Prince of Wale’s Theatre, where a quartette of pretty girls sing ”I Should Love to be a Boy.”
‘When the piece was first produced a few weeks ago the four girls threw a football to and fro on the stage, but now they go in for tackling and Miss Gabrielle Ray brings the incident to a close by kicking the football into the auditorium.
‘Miss Ray usually aims at getting the ball into one of the private boxes on the ”prompt” side of the house, and generally brings off a goal. Frequently, however, it rebounds into the stalls, and is tossed back to the stage, occasionally shaking up the musical director by catching him on the head. Some nights the light-footed kicker sends the ball into the pit. She is afterwards met at the stage-door by the lucky finder of the ball, and she writes her name on it. The finder retains the ball as a souvenir.’
(Daily Mail, London, Tuesday, 20 March 1906, p. 5f)