Posts Tagged ‘Sylvia Grey’

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Louise Montague

March 2, 2013

a carte de visit photograph of Louise Montague (1859-1910),
American actress and singer
(photo: Sarony, New York, circa 1883)

‘Miss Louise Montague, a member of the variety-theatre profession born in New York, aged 21, has been selected by Mr. Forepaugh as the winner of his prize of $10,000 for the handsomest woman in the country. In complexion she is a semi-brunette. Her lips are cherry, teeth regular and pearly, and visible at every smile through a large but not disproportionate mouth; has large expressive brown eyes, a symmetrical nose and an intelligent cast of countenance. In conversation – and she is possessed of a fund of sparkling talk – every feature if animated, and her flashing eyes and health-tinted cheeks, coupled with a vivacious manner, lend an additional charm to her demeanor. She is of medium height and figure and has a little foot.’
(The Lancaster Daily Intelligencer, Lancaster, Pennsylvania, Monday, 4 April 1881, p. 2b/c)

New York, 29 April 1887.
‘Capt. Alfred Thompson and Joseph Brooks, composing the Imperial Burlesque Company, have been sued for [$]8500 by Miss Louise Montague, whom they had engaged for four weeks, commencing May 29th, and whom they discharged because she would not sing for them, so that they might judge of her vocal powers.’
(The Era, London, Saturday, 14 May 1887, p. 15e)

‘Louise Montague, the $10,000 beauty, is making the hit of The Gondoliers in the company that is touring through the West [United States], and she makes it by high kicking. It was reported a year ago that she was studying for opera and it is evident that the report was true.’
(The Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Sunday, 20 April 1890, p, 18g)

Don Juan [to be produced on 28 October 1893] at the Gaiety [London], is to have the services of Mr. Arthur Roberts, Mr. Robert Pateman, Mr. Arthur Playfair, Mr. Edmund Payne, Miss Millie Hylton, Miss Sylvia Grey, Miss Katie Seymour, Miss Cissie Loftus, and Miss Louise Montague, a young singer from America.’
(The Birmingham Daily Post, Birmingham, England, Monday, 18 September 1893, p. 6h)

‘LOUISE MONTAGUE DEAD.
‘Was Famous ”Ten Thousand Dollar Beauty” of Forepaugh’s Circus.
‘Louise M. Montague, once heralded over the country as the ”Ten Thousand Dollar Beauty,” died on Tuesday at her home, 164 Manhattan Avenue. Louise Montague was an actress with Edward E. Rice’s company in The Corsair, and later became a star of David Henderson’s Sinbad the Sailor.
‘Adam Forepaugh, the circus proprietor, determined to make her beauty the feature of his circus, and in 1878 he engaged her to travel with his circus. She was advertise as the ”Ten Thousand Dollar Beauty,” and rode in the parades in a gorgeous chariot especially constructed for her.’
(The New York Times, Thursday, 17 March 1910)

‘DEATH DRAWS VEIL ON $10,000 BEAUTY
‘Louise Montague, Who Captured the Big Beauty Prize Money, Dies.
‘NEW YORK March 16 [1910]. – ”Montague, Louise M., died on Tuesday at her residence, 184 Manhattan avenue.”
‘This simple death notice appeared in the New York papers today. It was written in the main by Louise Montague herself a week before her death, the day on which death would come being left blank, to be filled in by the undertaker.
‘Few who read this notice know that the Louise Montague, whose death was so simply chronicled, was the woman who was once heralded far and wide over the country as the ”Ten Thousand Dollar Beauty.”
‘After the first rage over her had subsided she sought the quiet of private life, but a few years afterwards went on the stage because it was discovered that she had talents equal to her beauty.
‘Then Forepaugh with a showman’s acumen, offered a $10,000 prize for the most beautiful woman in America and had the judges select Louise Montague. Riding on a gorgeous chariot she was a feature of his circus parades.
‘But just before she died she asked that all the old pictures of herself in the days of her fleeting glory be brought to her, and tonight they stood on the mantel and on chairs in the room where Louise Montague lay in her coffin. Pinned on the wall was a glaring, many-colored poster – ”Forepaugh’s prize beauty” – and over the mantel was a faded photograph, life size of Louise Montague as ”Sindbad the Sailor.”’
(Evening Bulletin, Honolulu, Friday, 1 April 1910, p. 10c/d)

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Grace Palotta and Florence Lloyd A Gaiety Girl, Daly’s Theatre, New York, 18 September 1894

January 29, 2013

Grace Palotta and Florence Lloyd as they appeared in the bathing scene
in A Gaiety Girl, Daly’s Theatre, New York, 18 September 1894
(photo: B.J. Falk, New York, 1894)

This real photograph cigarette card was issued in England in the late 1890s by Ogden’s in one of their Guinea Gold series. The photograph shows Florence Lloyd and Grace Palotta respectively as Cissy Verner and Ethel Hawthorne in the London Gaiety Theatre Company’s production of A Gaiety Girl at Daly’s Theatre, New York, 18 September 1894. A United States tour followed the Broadway run.

Florence Lloyd and Grace Palotta

Florence Lloyd and Grace Palotta as they appeared in the bathing scene
In A Gaiety Girl, Daly’s Theatre, New York, 18 September 1894
(composite photo, originals by: B.J. Falk, New York, 1894)

A Gaiety Girl at Daly’s [New York] is realistic in that it has two dozen gaiety girls [sic] on the stage. The burlesque bases its hope to success on the claim that one dozen of these are beauties.’
(The Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Brooklyn, New York, Sunday, 23 September 1894, p.8c)

‘George Edwardes’ London company will occupy the Brooklyn Academy of Music during Christmas week [1894]. It will appear in The Gaiety Girl [sic] that had a run of 300 nights in London and three months at Daly’s theater in New York.’
(The Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Brooklyn, New York, Sunday, 16 December 1894, p.9a)

The Gaiety Girl [sic], an English burlesque which has attracted a good deal of attention in London and New York, will be brought to the Academy of Music for the whole of this week. The piece is a mixture of pretty girls, English humor, singing, dancing and bathing machines and dresses of the English fashion. The dancing is a special feature of the performance, English burlesques giving much more attention to that feature of their attractiveness than the American entertainments of the same grade do. The present dancers are the successors of Letty Lind and Sylvia Gray [sic], who are still remembered for introducing the blessings of the skirt dance to America, and they are subjects of the same sort of interest.’
(The Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Brooklyn, New York, Sunday, 23 December 1894, p.9a)

‘The attendance at the Academy [Brooklyn] to see the new musical comedy – it might better be called a farce – A Gaiety Girl, was not great in point of numbers. It was Christmas eve, and Brooklyn people do not attend theatres on the night before Christmas. Those who did go are wondering yet what they say. No such surprising amount of nothing has appeared on a stage here for some time. It was entertaining beyond a doubt, but this was mainly owing to the efforts of perhaps three capably eccentric actors and three or four dancers. Harry Monkhouse, as Dr. Montague Brierly, was exceedingly clever. He was like a subdued De Wolf Hopper, and the audience waited for him to appear again when he left the stage. His scenes with Miss Maud Hobson, as Lady Virginia Forrest, where comical, and he has a drawl that would make any lines funny. Miss Maud Hobson was excellent as the flirtatious chaperon and woman of the divorce courts. Mr. Leedham Bancock [i.e. Leedham Bantock], as Sir Lewis Grey, judge of the divorce court; Major Barclay, as portrayed by Mr. Frederick Kaye, and the Rose Brierly of Miss Decima Moore were well received. The Gaiety girls [sic] are good dancers, graceful as could be wished for, and Miss Cissy Fitzgerald made a hit in her one dance, but, in spite of continued applause, she refused to reappear. The play went calmly on amid a storm of handclapping which developed into several well defined hisses when no attention was paid to the encore. As Miss Fitzgerald came down pretty hard on the floor at the close of her dance and limped off, it is to be presumed she was unable to continue. Mr. Charles Ryley, as Charles Goldfield, has a pleasant tenor voice and was quite willing to use it. The rest of the cast looked pretty, the songs were quite catching and the lines fairly humorous. Most of the jokes, however, were too broad for this side of the bridge. Mina, as given by Miss Grace Palotta, was a typical American idea of a French girl. Her songs were light but taking and she gave them with decided vivacity and grace. The words of A Gaiety Girl are by Owen Hall, lyrics by Harry Greenback [i.e. Harry Greenbank] and music by Sydney Johnson [i.e. Sidney Jones]. The play is well mounted.’
(The Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Brooklyn, New York, Wednesday, 26 December 1894, p.2c)