Posts Tagged ‘Raymond Hitchcock’


Nellie Braggins, American actress and singer in comic opera

April 16, 2014

Nellie Braggins (1872-1924), American actress and singer in comic opera
(photo: unknown, United States, circa 1898; Ogden’s Guinea Gold Cigarettes cigarette card issued in England, circa 1900)

‘Washington has a genuine musical treat in store for it. On April 18, The Highwayman will be presented at the Lafayette Square Opera House by the Broadway Theater Opera House by the Broadway Theater Opera Company. It is rarely that a piece comes so well recommended. The company to present The Highwayman is extraordinary in its number of clever and famous principals. Among them are Joseph O’Mara, Camille D’Arville, Jerome Sykes, Nellie Braggins, Harry Macdonough, Maud Williams, Van Rensselaer Wheeler, and Reginald Roberts.’
(The Times, Washington, DC, Sunday, 10 April 1898, part 2, p. 15c)

Three Little Lambs, by the author of 1492 and Jack and the Beanstalk, which comes direct from an engagement of fifty nights at the Fifth Avenue Theatre, New York, will be presented for the first time here at the Academy of Music to-night.
‘The story of Three Little Lambs is full of characteristic humor. The banking house, with its head a confidence man and its minor officers flirtatious young woman, is eminently an original idea. The introduction to this remarkable financial institution of the banker’s former pal in a humble station and his frisky bride is the source of no end of amusing complications, and the transfer of the whole party to Porto Rico is a bold expedient that might daunt an audacious dramatist.
‘With all its extravagances and absurdities, its jollity and audacity, there is nothing to offend the most delicate sensibilities. Three Little Lambs is as clean as it is bright. The skill shown by members of the Fifth Avenue Theatre Musical Company, the brilliancy of the stage setting and costuming make the production noteworthy of its kind, and the large audiences that have witnessed it have given every evidence of enjoying all its many features. In the company are found the names of Miss Marie Cahill, Miss Nellie Braggins, Miss Clara Palmer, Raymond Hitchcock and Edmund Lawrence, and the fine appearance, good training and vocal strength of the big chorus makes it a musical success.’
(Virginian-Pilot, Norfolk, VA, Wednesday, 25 April 1900, p. 5d)

* * * * *

St. Louis, 25 June 1900
‘The wedding of Nellie Braggins and John W. Gantz last Thursday was strictly private owing to the serious illness of Emory Braggins, an uncle of the bride. Miss Braggins’ last appearance on the stage was in The Beggar Student at Uhrig’s Cave two weeks ago. She is under a provisional contract with the Uhrig’s Cave company for the remainder of the season, but will not sing again except in case of emergency. At the close of the season she says she will retire from the stage for good.’
(The New York Dramatic News, New York, Saturday, 30 June 1900, p. 10c)


Peggy Kurton in Mr Manhatten, Prince of Wales’s Theatre, London, 1916

September 13, 2013

Peggy Kurton (1895-1977), English musical comedy actress and singer, as she appeared as Evelyn in Mr Manhattan, the musical play with Raymond Hitchcock in the lead, which was produced at the Prince of Wales’s Theatre, London, on 30 March 1916
(photo: Bertram Park, London, 1916)

Peggy Kurton, who until about the beginning of 1914 was known professionally by her real name of Gladys Kurton, was born in Bristol on 4 May 1895. She was the only child of Edgar Augustus Kurton (1870-1926) and his wife Sarah Ann Amelia Kurton (née Pettey, 1876-1937), who separated in 1904, although her father had a son in 1908 with his then partner, Beatrice Budd. Mrs Kurton filed for divorce in 1909, which the following year was denied.

Miss Kurton made her first appearance at the Adelphi Theatre, London, on 19 October 1912 in the chorus of The Dancing Mistress. She afterwards appeared successfully at the Gaiety Theatre and elsewhere in London in several productions and also in New York in 1914/15 and 1921/22. On her return to London she was seen in Battling Butler, a musical farce, at the New Oxford Theatre, which was produced on 8 December 1922. She was succeeded during the run by Phyllis Titmuss and was not seen again until September 1925 when she toured in a musical version of Uncle Tom’s Cabin. This was her last appearance. In the meantime she had been brought up at Bow Street Police Court on 23 March 1925, where she was fined £2 for being drunk and disorderly in Gerrard Street, Soho, having been ejected ‘on account of her violent conduct’ from the ‘Forty Three’ Club during the early morning of the previous Sunday.


Raymond Hitchcock

March 5, 2013

Raymond Hitchcock (1865-1929), American actor, as he was seen in London for the first time upon appearing in the title role of Mr Manhattan, which was first produced at the Prince of Wales’s Theatre, on 30 March 1916
(photo: unknown, USA, circa 1915)

‘The famous American character-comedian, who made his first appearance in England in Mr. Manhattan at the Prince of Wales’s Theatre last week. Mr. Manhattan sounds American but it is an all-English musical comedy, for the book is by Mr. Fred Thompson and Mr. C.H. Bovill, and the music by Mr. Howard Talbot. The piece had a successful trial trip at Blackpool before coming to London.’
(The Tatler, London, 5 April 1916, p. viii)

* * * * *

‘Hitchcock’s Home Burned.
‘The two-story frame dwelling owned by Raymond Hitchcock, about three miles from Great Neck, L.I., was destroyed by fire which started from some unknown cause early last Tuesday morning. The loss is estimated at from $30,000 to $40,000.
‘The fire spread so rapidly that when it was discovered there was little or no chance of saving the building. A fire call was sent to Great Neck and Alert Engine Company responded, but they could do little to extinguish the flames, although able to prevent the flames from spreading to the home of W.A. Chandler, close by.
‘Two women servants where were asleep on the second floor were slightly injured in leaping from their bedrooms.’
(The New York Dramatic Mirror, New York, Saturday, 11 September 1909, p.11c)

Raymond Hitchcock made a number of gramophone recordings in New York and London between 1910 and 1922, for several of which see the Internet Archive.


Raymond Hitchcock

March 3, 2013

song sheet cover with portrait of Raymond Hitchcock (1865-1929), American actor,
‘When You’re All Dressed Up and No Place to Go,’
which he sang in The Beauty Shop, produced at the Astor Theatre, New York City, 13 April 1914
(photo: unknown, probably USA, circa 1913; published by T.H. Harms & Francis Day & Hunter, New York, 1914)

Mr Hitchcock reprised ‘When You’re All Dressed Up and No Place to Go’ for his appearance in Mr Manhattan, at the Prince of Wales’s Theatre, London, on 30 March 1916. He made a recording of it for the HMV label (02660) at the studios of The Gramophone Company Ltd at Hayes, near London, on 14 April 1916.