Posts Tagged ‘Frederick Strange’


Blanche Owen, English music hall and concert singer

March 31, 2015

Blanche Owen (active 1870-1875), English music hall and concert singer
(lithograph flyer, 1872)

‘Mr. Alexander McDonald.
‘A successful and very interesting entertainment was given on Monday evening by Mr. Alexander McDonald, at the Spread Eagle Assembly Rooms, Wandsworth [south west London]. Mr. McDonald is one of the many who have recently adopted the profession of a public reader, and at the same time he is one of the very few who can approach Mr. Charles Dickens or Mr. Bellew either in voice or in the rendering of the works of great authors. His longest as well as his shortest ”reading” is committed to memory, and is delivered without nots or reference, word for word, as it is found in the book; with action suited to the word, and word to the action. His voice is powerful, flexible, and of very pleasing quality. Every word is distinctly heard, the softest utterance or the fullest exhibition of passion and energy being equally seized by the most distant among the audience. We have hear Mr. McDonald declaim the selection from Nicholas Nickleby with remarkable intelligence and force; but on Monday evening his selections were of the humorous type, including the ”Election for Beadle” (by Dickens), ”Pyramus and Thisbe,””Blind-man’s Buff,” and ”A Norrible Tale” (by E.L. Blanchard). The audience was kept in full laughter throughout. The entertainment is very agreeably varied by the introduction of some ballads by Professional singers. Miss Blanche Owen, a very pretty lady with a ringing soprano voice, and a marvellous set of teeth, made an impression upon the audience generally, and upon the writer particularly. This was not the case with a young gentleman who sung Kucken’s ”O’er vale and mountain,” and who was specially described in the programme as a ”tenor.” The gentleman who presided at the piano played very cleverly, and, besides, contributed to the merriment of the evening by a quaint manner of walking on and off the stage.’
(The Era, London, Sunday, 6 March 1870, p. 5c)

‘Beaumont Institution, Mile-End [London].
‘The annual entertainment in aid of the funds of the Horn of Plenty Philanthropic Society took place at the above Institution on Tuesday evening last [21 February 1871]. The objects of the Society are in every respect praiseworthy, and by means of these entertainments some thirty or forty pounds are annually raised and expended in bread, coals, &c., among the poor of the district. The proceedings, which were of a miscellaneous character, commenced with a pianoforte selection by Mr. C. Solomon, after which the Pickwick Histrionic Club appeared in [J. Maddison] Morton’s comic drama, produced last spring [21 April 1870] at the Royalty Theatre [London], entitled Little Mother… . The chief feature of the performance was the Kitty Clark, or Little Mother, of Miss Alice Vincent. The acting of this talented young lady was in every respect praiseworthy, and the style in which she ”lectured” the old dentist, spurned his gift, and thrust him from her door, elicited loud laughter and well-deserved applause. Miss Blanche Owen as Fanny, whose amatory relations with Christopher form the basis of the plot, acted with pleasing intelligence; and on the fall of the curtain the whole of the performers were enthusiastically cheered. Miss Blanche Owen afterwards appeared and sang ”The Watch on the Rhine” and ”The Marseillaise.” In the latter she carried the tri-colour and wore a crape scarf. Her singing was much admired, but why two verses of ”The Marseillaise” were given in English and one in French we were unable to learn …’
(The Era, London, Sunday, 26 February 1871, p. 12a)

‘ROYAL SURREY GARDENS [London]. – Mr. F. Strange has engaged Mr. Howard Paul and a talented concert and entertainment party to appear next week in a series of amusing impersonations, all of which will be given in costume. Mr. Howard Paul ranks among the best of those who ”sing a song and tell a story” on the stage, and the artistes who assist him, Miss Laura Joyce, Miss Blanche Owen, and Miss Nelly Ford, come well endorsed as young and talented aspirants to public favour.’
(The Era, London, Sunday, 2 June 1872, p. 12a)

‘MUSIC HALL SURREY STREET. [Sheffield, Yorkshire]
‘In Magnificent Costumes.
‘In Six Songs and Impersonations, including a Lecture on Woman’s Rights.
‘In Six Songs and Impersonations, including ”TONY TOPPER, THE NEWS BOY.”
‘The Most Accomplished Little Pianist in the World.
‘In his latest and greatest hit, ”I am so Volatile.”
‘Doors Open at Half-past Seven; commence at Eight. Carriages at Ten.
‘Front Seats (Reserved), 2s.; Second Seats, 1s.; Gallery and Back of Room, 6d.
‘Tickets may be had and places secured at Mr. FREEMANILL’S Music Warehouse, High street.’
(The Sheffield and Rotherham Independent, Sheffield, Yorkshire, Monday, 7 October 1872, p. 1a, advertisement)

The Marylebone music hall, London
‘… Miss Blanche Owen, who is here, is new to us. She has a pleasing, winsome manner, and sings with ease and distinctness. The strains which she rendered in our hearing were ”While the sun is shining always make your hay,” ”Good-bye, Charley,” and another.’
(The Era, London, Sunday, 2 November 1872, p. 4c)


Hanlon Brothers

April 4, 2013

a carte de visite photograph of three of the Hanlon Brothers, ‘the celebrated American gymnasts’
(photo: unknown, probably England, mid 1860s)

The Alhambra, London, company appears at the Theatre du Châtelet, Paris, including premier ballerina Giovannina Pitteri and the Hanlon Brothers, acrobats.
‘Echoes from Paris …
‘The Theatre du Châtelet has re-opened its doors for the performances of the London Alhambra. There are two ballets in which 100 danseuses, the stars of their profession, are headed, says the critic of the Petit Journal, by the star of stars, Mdlle. Pitteri. There are also pantomimic scenes of a diverting character, supported by capital clowns, of the greatest ”suppleness.” A comic ballet deserves especial notice. It is entitled Ki-ki-ko-oh-ki-key, and the most facetious member of the company plays in an ape’s skin. The ”Marseillaise” is sung by 100 vocalists, with a chorus of the audience. The Petit Journal, whose critic, according to custom, writes in the first person singular, thus notices the exhibition. ”I do justice to the acrobats, the gymnasiarchs, and the dancers of Mr. [Frederick] Strange, but I regret to see this fine theatre given up to such spectacles. The level of art was already low enough in the stage of the Châtelet, but a witty expression, a spicy couplet, indemnified the public for the silliness of the dialogue. But now the Châtelet only replaces the Hippodrome, without the equestrian exercises. It replaces the hippodrome very advantageously, I admit. Let gaiety and freedom from care once more be vouchsafed to us, and everyone will rush to see the performances of the brothers Hanlon, three truly surprising acrobats. I say three – rather two and a half – for one of the brothers, a nice little fellow, is hardly ten years of age. The feats of the Hanlon brothers are so marvellous and so daring that the managers thought proper to warn the public beforehand, lest the amphitheatre soul resound with the shrieks of terror.”’
(The Court Circular, London, 20 August 1870, pp. 784c-785a)


Lizzie Marshall

February 28, 2013

a carte de visite photograph of
Lizzie Marshall (fl. 1850s-1870s), English actress and singer
(photo: The London Stereoscopic & Photographic Co Ltd, London, circa 1870)

‘LEICESTER. Theatre Royal. – The Lessee, Mr John Windley, has never produced so good a Pantomime here as the present one of The Babes in the Wood; or Harlequin robin Hood and His Foresters Good and the Brave Little Soldiers of Lilliput. He has done well in entrusting the authorship to Mr Charles Horsman, who has written it smartly and intelligibly. For the burlesque portion of it, Miss Lizzie Marshall (from the Philharmonic Theatre, London), is specially engaged, and, as Norval Smith, is perhaps the most saucy, pretty, well-dressed ruffian of the age. She is seconded by Mr A. Thomas as Brown, No. 2 Ruffian. It is the best part we have seen him in. The pretty babes are richly burlesqued by Mr. Harry Windley and Mrs Charles Horsman, the latter the post prodigious baby extant. Mr Windley has some good songs, and introduces with effect several local matters into one of them. Miss Louisa Payne looks extremely nice as Robin Hood. Miss E. Windley is King of Lilliput, and songs, acts, and dances very creditably. She has, moreover, under her charge forty diminutive children, dressed as an army, and their surprising precision in marching, under Mdlle. Fanchette, their solo [sic] instructress, is decidedly the feature of the Pantomime. Mr Jackman was a cruet looking Uncle. Mr. G. Raffal, Mr. W.H. Whatton, and Miss K. Thomas represent the Governess, Black Diamond, and Little John. Mr Laffar has again distinguished himself as scenic artist; his efforts in the Ballet and Transformation scenes were worthily recognised. Mr C. Bigwood (Britannia Theatre, London) is Harlequin; Messrs Laffar and Raffal, Clown and Pantaloon; and Mdlles. Fanchette, Columbine and Harlequina. Mr. W.H. Whatton is the Policeman, and takes the customary cuffs with the air of a martyr. Mr T. Green has charge of the elaborate mechanical arrangements, Mr Selvidge the lime-light effects, Mr W.H. Nicholson is responsible for the overture, and Mr T. Weston for the incidental music.’
(The Era, London, Sunday, 31 December 1871, p. 10c)

‘MISS LIZZIE MARSHALL (late of Philharmonic Theatre) thanks Managers for offers of Engagements, and begs to say she is Specially Engaged by F. Strange, Esq., ROYAL SURREY GARDENS, to sustain the part of MERCURY in Orphee aux Enfers.’
(The Era, London, Sunday, 30 March 1873, p. 1a)

‘MR. E. MARSHALL (ROYAL PHILHARMONIC THEATRE, every Evening), the original Gendarme, Genevieve, 450 Nights; Sam Crisp, Cabinet Secret, 126 Nights; Dr O’Toole, Irish Tutor, 100 Nights; Wormwood, Lottery Ticket, 150 Nights. Miss LIZZIE MARSHALL, as MERCURY, ROYAL SURREY GARDENS, every Evening. At Liberty shortly, London or America.
‘Agents, Messrs English and Blackmore.’
(The Era, London, Sunday, 1 June 1873, p. 1d)