Great War Theatre

Examiner of Plays' Summary:

This is a melodrama of a familiar sort, free from any ‘sexual’ unpleasantness and from excessive vulgarity. The chief personages are a cockney who distinguishes himself in the War, his sister, who becomes a famous dancer by the help of the villain, a German spy, and in return has to be his ‘tool’, and a boy who is afraid of showing cowardice in the army - the latter a motive borrowed I fancy, from Mr Mason’s ‘Four Feathers’. The boy’s father is in control of railways and the villain (with his tool) beguiles the boy to a night club with a view to getting secret information. The hero tracks them down and there is a row in which the dancer is shot. In the last act it comes out that the boy had shown a moment of cowardice at the Front and was saved its consequences by the hero. But he redeems all that when the villain and an accomplice comes to the Hall at night and insist on his giving them access to his father's papers which will enable them to blow up a train by which the King is travelling. He refuses and they torture him, but the dancer (who has recovered) brings on the hero and others and the villain is dealt with. The poor boy dies of the treatment he has received. The only objectionable thing is the torturing in the last act. It is almost all ‘off’ however, and is no worse than in ‘La Tosca’. Still I think that with the licence an intimation should be sent that there must be no torturing on the stage and that the victims’ cries etc. should not be prolonged: the scene must be brief (last act pp.9 seq) Recommended for Licence G. S. Street. Written undertaking given that the scene which only lasts three minutes will not be overdone.

Licensed On: 19 Feb 1918

License Number: 1405

British Library Reference: LCP1918/3

British Library Classmark: Add MS 66185 EE


24 Dec 1917 Grand Junction Theatre, ManchesterProfessional
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Performers:Gladys Hastings-Walton (Philip Ramsdale), Jerrold Heather (Jim Smith), T Edmund Wildash (Major Hugh Ramsdale), Fred Gresham (Sgt Jock McTavish), Victor Cowen (Anton), Gilbert Elvin (Karl von Wurlberg), Dallas Yorke (Lady Rose Tregarthen), Frances D'Albert (Poll Binks), Leah Corentez (Liz Smith/Lurlina) Review: Authoress in a trouser role!, The Stage
21 Jan 1918 Hippodrome, EastbourneProfessional
28 Jan 1918 Castleford Theatre, CastlefordProfessional
4 Feb 1918 Crown Theatre, ManchesterProfessional
18 Feb 1918 Elephant and Castle Theatre, LondonUnknown Licensed Performance
18 Feb 1918 Elephant and Castle Theatre, LondonProfessional
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First performance on Lord Chamberlain's copy
18 Mar 1918 Theatre Royal, StanleyProfessional
22 Apr 1918 Theatre Royal, JarrowProfessional
20 May 1918 Hippodrome, WednesburyProfessional
14 Oct 1918 Gaiety Theatre, Houghton-Le-SpringProfessional
4 Nov 1918 Hippodrome, SpennymoorProfessional
11 Nov 1918 Grand Theatre, HalifaxProfessional
27 Oct 1919 Hippodrome, DarwenProfessional
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Performers: Andrews-Anderson Stock Company