Posts Tagged ‘Huntley Wright’

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Gabrielle Ray as the boy, So-Hie in See-See at the Prince of Wales’s Theatre, London, 1906

September 10, 2013

Gabrielle Ray (1883-1973), English musical comedy dancer and actress, as she appeared as the Chinese boy, So-Hie in See-See, the ‘Chinese’ comic opera produced at the Prince of Wales’s Theatre, London, on 20 June 1906.
(photo: Foulsham & Banfield, London, 1906)

See-See at the Prince of Wales’s, produced last night, 20 June 1906
‘… We move on to Checo’s garden – a very fine set. Enter Mr. W.H. Berry as Checo. He sings a poor song. A topical Song, ”British Slavery,” falls to Mr. Huntley Wright and wakes things up a bit. (Invincible musical comedy!) Follows a rather funny scene between Mr. Wright and Mr. Berry, and a not very funny duet. Then comes one of Miss Gabrielle Ray’s dainty little dances; oddly enough, it falls flat… . Miss Gabrielle Ray is attractive in a queer, impish, restless, gracelessly gracefuly way of her own. If she would cultivate a more gentle way of speaking; and refrain from taking the audience into her confidence with almost every line, she would be wholly delightful… .’ (Daily Mail, London, Thursday, 21 June 1906, p. 7e)

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Huntley Wright in A Country Girl

July 18, 2013

photograph flyer for a touring production of the musical play, A Country Girl; or, Town and Country, featuring a portrait of Huntley Wright (1868-1941), English actor and singer, as Barry, servant to Barry Challoner (played by Hayden Coffin) in the London production of that show, produced at Daly’s Theatre on 18 January 1902.
(photo: unknown, probably London, 1902; printed by the Rotary Photographic Co Ltd, London, 1902/03)

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Marie Tempest

May 9, 2013

Marie Tempest (1864-1942), English actress and vocalist, as O Mimosa San in The Geisha: A Story of a Teahouse, Daly’s, London, 25 April 1896.
(photo: Alfred Ellis, London, 1896)

500th performance of The Geisha, Daly’s Theatre, London, September 1897
’ By the way, the 500th performance of The Geisha, at Daly’s Theatre, last week – albeit there was no distribution of souvenirs, and Mr. George Edwardes refrained from making one of his characteristic speeches – was memorable if only by reason of the stirring ovation accorded by the overflowing audience to each of the prominent members of the cast now happily returned from well-deserved holidays. Miss Tempest, who resumed her part after a short visit to Aix-les-Bains, received a welcome on her home-coming which visibly affected her. Later on in the play, when Miss Letty Lind tripped across the bridge with her ‘riskha, there was another burst of applause, which prevented her from beginning her dialogue for some moments. For the rest the popular enthusiasm was pretty evenly distributed among Mr. Hayden Coffin, Mr. Huntley Wright, and Mr. Rutland Barrington. At the close a galleryite summed up the situation in a terse sentence which nobody seemed inclined to dispute, “Good old George [Edwardes] always gives us good value!” Amongst the artists who are still filling their original parts in The Geisha at Daly’s is Miss Mary Collette, the original O Kamurasaki San.’
(The Bristol Times and Mirror, Bristol, Tuesday, 14 September 1897, p.3g)

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Les Merveilleuses

May 8, 2013

Les Merveilleuses, the comic opera at Daly’s theatre, first produced on 27 October 1906, with music by Hugo Felix, reopens after various changes, including the title to The Lady Dandies at the same theatre at the end of January 1907; Huntley Wright, Gabrielle Ray and others join the cast. Huntley Wright (1868-1943), English actor and singer, as St. Amour in The Lady Dandies, a part in which he succeeded W.H. Berry at the end of January 1907. (photo: Ellis & Walery, London, 1907)

‘At Daly’s they do things in a grand style which distinguishes Mr. George Edwardes’s productions at this theatre from other plays of the same order if not of the same class, and Mr. Edwardes, in all these years, has given us nothing more beautiful at Daly’s than The Merveilleuses, of which the title has now been changed to The Lady Dandies, a wise reversion to the title, or something very like it, chosen for the play before it was first produced. It is a change for the better, for Merveilleuse happens to be just one of those words which an Englishman may pronounce in such a way that nobody can understand what he means – or what he says, which is not exactly the same thing. The name of the piece is not the only thing that has been changed, and on Wednesday evening Mr. Huntley Wright returned once more to the scene of his great successes, and with the return of Mr. Wright to the fold Daly’s is itself again. With the interpolation of new songs, for which Mr. Lionel Monckton has written the music to the words of Captain Basil Hood, who has done M. Victorien Sardou’s “book” into good English, the dalyfication of this “comedy opera” is complete. Mr. Wright has now the part of St. Amour, the Prefect of Police, which was first played by Mr. W.H. Berry. It is not into the background, however, that Mr. Berry retires. In his part of Tournesol, the “police agent,” he is as funny as ever, while the character of St. Amour has expanded wonderfully at the magic touch of the ready and inventive Huntley Wright. Mr. Wright acted and sang and danced and joked as if he felt glad to be back at Daly’s, and the audience laughed as if they were glad to see him back. His satirical, topical song, “Only a Question of Time,” made a great hit, and although I have no great liking for the growing custom of introducing all sorts of personalities – social, political, and domestic – into musical plays, I must acknowledge that the audience seemed to find immense enjoyment in the verse which says “It is only a question of time (And the prominence given her part), And the charming Camille [Clifford], [Edna] May become Nelly Neil, Which is [Charles] Frohman for Sarah Bernhardt.”
‘Another new-comer to The Lady Dandies is Miss Gabrielle Ray, who has an accent all her own in dancing as she has in singing, and this I will say, a daintier dancer I never wish to see, though Miss Ray must make haste to get rid of her air of self-consciousness if she wishes to make the best of her talents. The student of theatrical astronomy may discover a whole constellation of stars at Daly’s just now, and the beautiful music of Dr. Hugo Felix is admirably rendered. Miss Evie Greene, who has a new song since the first night, is in great form; I have never seen her look better, nor act better, nor sing better than she looks and acts and sings as the “merveilleuse” Ladoiska in The Lady Dandies, and Miss Denise Orme, the purity and sweetness of whose voice would melt a heart of india-rubber, is a sheer ecstasy. Mr. Robert Evett, as the hero, and Mr. Fred Kaye have warmed to their parts, and I should say the same of Mr. Louis Bradfield’s performance of the “Incroyable” if I had not found it already admirable when the piece was first produced. Musical plays have a curious elasticity, and I find it difficult to realise what has been taken out of Les Marveilleuses [sic] to put so much more in. Certainly the new infusion of fun does not diminish the attractiveness of The Lady Dandies, and there is a long life, if I am not mistaken, and a merry one, in store for the piece.’
(‘Carados’, The Referee, London, Sunday, 3 February 1907, p.3b)

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Huntley Wright

March 17, 2013

‘Mr. Huntley Wright as a Chinaman.
In See-See at the Prince of Wales’s he plays the part of Hang-Kee,
in love with Lee (Miss Adrienne Augarde). In order to win her love he has to adopt
many disguises, including that of a Tartar General.’
(photo: Ellis & Walery, London, 1906)

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The Four Amaranths, acrobatic dancers

January 18, 2013

the Four Amaranths
(Mary, Tina, Jennie and Hannah, fl. early 20th Century),
acrobatic dancers (photo: unknown, circa 1915)

This hand tinted real photograph postcard, photographer and publisher uncredited, dates from about 1910. For reference to the Four Amaranths’ appearances in New York between 1915 and 1920, see the Internet Broadway Database.

‘FOUR AMARANTHS
‘A quartette of graceful lady acrobatic dancers. Some act.’
(The Wisconsin State Journal, Madison, Wisconsin, 23 February 1915, p. 6f, advertisement)

Keith’s, Philadelphia, PA, week beginning 23 April 1917
‘… The pretty dancing turn of Hooper and Marbury got something more than usual in the opening position. Both are good dancers, and pretty stage setting and costuming help get the act over in good shape. A dancing act of another kind – that of the Four Amaranths, who mix acrobatics with their stopping, closed the vaudeville bill, and the girls did very well without showing anything new.’
(Variety, New York, Friday, 27 April 1917, pp. 48D/49a)

The Amaranths troupe was originally composed of three sisters, known as the Three Amaranths (otherwise the Sisters Amaranth). They appeared in the musical play, The Cingalee; or, Sunny Ceylon, which was produced at Daly’s Theatre, London, on 5 March 1904. Their Perahara Dances were intended to enrich the exotic setting of the piece. ‘One of the most striking features in The Cingalee is the devil dancing by the Sisters Amaranth, who were greatly applauded by the Queen [Alexandra] on the first night.’ Other members of the cast included Hayden Coffin, Rutland Barrington, Fred Kaye, Huntley Wright, Sybil Arundale, Gracie Leigh, Carrie Moore and Isabel Jay, together with the dancers Loku Banda, Willie Warde and Topsy Sinden.