Great War Theatre

Performances at this Theatre

N/A Willie Goes WestUnknown
23 Nov 1914 The Little Grey Home In The WestProfessional
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If it were possible for a good title to make a good play there is no doubt that Mr . C . W . Somerset would have scored all along the line. For thanks in part to the enormous popularity of Hermann Lohr's song , a better title it would be difficult to imagine. But, unfortunately, it is impossible to treat the play at all seriously. It is either melodrama run riot, with all the improbabilities of this type of play turned into glaring absurdities, or else it is an intentional burlesque on melodramatic methods. As the latter Monday's audience evidently regarded it. If they were not thrilled they were certainly amused, and, as laughter is a very antidote to the depression of the times, possibly the anonymous author's object was attained. We being to suspect him of being in a jocular mood soon after the rise of the curtain, when, although the time was 5 a.m he dismissed one of his characters to do some shopping. And so all through the play. The dramatis persona are familiar (Stage, 26 November 1914
19 Apr 1915 All FrenchUnknown
7 May 1915 AlsaceProfessional
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This was a 'special flying matinee' performed by Madame Réjane.
17 May 1915 Joseph's CoatUnknown
20 Sep 1915 La Revue TricoloreProfessional
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‘That fascinating entente cordiale revue “Le Moulin Rouge,” which had such a successful season at the London Pavilion, was presented at the Park Theatre on Monday, when a large audience revelled in the sparkling production. In “Le Moulin Rouge” we have something distinctly original; the author has struck out on new lines and with admirable results. The revue is played by a very superior company of forty-five Parisian artistes, and those who have speaking parts have a good command of English ... the entente cordiale is very effectively represented. The element of fervid patriotism runs through the performance. Of bright and wholesome humour there is an abundance, but perhaps it is to the delightful dancing and the charming setting that the revue chiefly owes its success. A very pretty scene is “The Land of Oranges,” in which exponents of the terpsichorean art are at their best. The Entente Cordiale scene evokes very hearty laughter, “Jock’s” conversation with a French lassie being absurdly funny. Two special dances by Mdlle. M. de Sehgue and Mons. F. Denery win expressions of very hearty appreciation. In the *Arsene Lupin scene M. Albert Brouett gives a very fine delineation of the audacious bandit, while his other impersonations are also cleverly done. M. Frank Attree, M. Jacques Lerner, and M. Miroy do good work, while ladies are ably represented by Mdlle. Aldona Redo, Mdlle. Nelli Corti, Mdlle. Leo Darly, Mdlle. Henriquetta, and Mdlle. Ethel Bert’. Eastbourne Gazette, 22 September 1915. [* Arsène Lupin was the gentleman thief-cum-detective created by the French writer Maurice Leblanc.] ‘All the French actors at the Park Theatre this week have been on active service. M. Jean Fabert (proprietor of the “Moulin Rouge”) was wounded at the battle of the Marne; M. Armandy at Antwerp; and M. Albert Brouett near Nancy. M. Jack Lerner, M. Milroy and M. Semis have been invalided. M. Armand Dias, who was also invalided, received on Monday a message calling him back to the Front; and his battle song (En avant les petits gars,” written by H. Fragson) is now rendered by M. Armandy. The song expresses the French aspiration: “We must get back Alsace and Lorraine!” Mlle. Leo Darly was a French Red Cross nurse at the Front and was wounded, being sent to England to recuperate’ (Eastbourne Gazette, 22 September 1915).
29 Nov 1915 Whose WifeUnknown
28 Aug 1916 A Kiss For CinderellaProfessional
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The Eastbourne Gazette, 23 August 1916, advertised ‘A Kiss for Cinderella’ at the Devonshire Park Theatre on Monday 28 August for three nights and a Wednesday matinee. The Era, 30 August 1916, published a review of the production. The cast included Hilda Trevelyan as Miss Thing, Percy Hutchison as the policeman, Mr. F. G. Thurstans as Mr Bodie, Charles B Bedells as the King, Annie Stallman as the Queen, Will Smith as Danny, Margaret Damer as Mrs Bodie, Esme Biddle as a Probationer, W Salver as Lord Mayor, and Alec Crichton as Lord Times. Also in a review in the Eastbourne Gazette, 30 August 1916: ‘A special word of praise must be given to Mr Will Smith in the part of Danny, the stolid-looking “boy in blue” who was the typical wounded Tommy to the life, solid and impressive, and yet bubbling over with that irresistible humour which is the priceless asset of the British soldier wherever he goes’.
1 Feb 1917 Charivari, an evening with PunchinelloUnknown
1 Feb 1917 AladdinUnknown
26 Feb 1917 General PostUnknown
3 Dec 1917 The Girl from Ciro'sProfessional
28 Jan 1918 Nothing but the TruthUnknown
4 Feb 1918 Peace Time Prophecies or Stories Gone WrongProfessional
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The Era, 6 February 1918, listed Bubbly as On The Road from 4 February at the Devonshire Park Theatre, Eastbourne.
4 Mar 1918 JulyannProfessional
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Performed 4-6 March 1918 by Mr Alfred Butt's company, as the start of a short provincial tour which was intended to precede a London production (which never appears to have taken place). The cast included: he cast was Pte. J. Gallager and Pte. D. Dempsey, H. V. Esmond (as both Pte Gallagher and Dempsey n.b. in the 1917 production different actors had played these parts); Frank Fort; Robert Dalsell; J. R. Cassidy; Patrick Traynor; Basil Lofting; Frank Cavannagh; Paddy Dupres; George McCloskie; Hilda Harris; Florence Helm; Joan Pereira; and Moya Mannering.
22 Apr 1918 Home ServiceUnknown
25 Nov 1918 Peace Time Prophecies or Stories Gone WrongProfessional
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At the Devonshire Park Theatre, Eastbourne ‘Ralph Haslam presents his company in the second visit of Bubbly. Ivy Tresmand, Edmund Russell, Edith Payne, and Ernest Seebold successfully reappear, associated with them now being Kathlene Martyn, Doris Nowland, Bibi Delabere, Jessie Bevan, Sybil Sefton, R. Barrett-Lennard, George Belmore, and James Robin (stage director), Leslie Tolhurst occupies the conductor’s chair’ (The Stage, 28 November 1918).
20 Jan 1919 The Luck Of The NavyProfessional
17 Mar 1919 Nurse BensonProfessional
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The Stage, 13 and 20 March 1919, listed Marie Löhr’s Co. as On Tour in Nurse Benson from 17 March at the D.P., Eastbourne. Also The Era, 19 March 1919. Advertised in the Eastbourne Chronicle, 15 March 1919.
12 May 1919 The TitleProfessional
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‘Opening with a full house on Monday night [at the Devonshire Park Theatre], Messrs Vedrenne and Eadie’s company scored an immediate and pronounced success in Arnold Bennett’s brilliant three-act comedy The Title. Although punctuated with dramatic situations, generally of a whimsical and ludicrous nature, the production is less a play than a satirical argument amongst cleverly-drawn social types. In a good-humoured, but scathless [sic] and relentless spirit, the author exposes the easy manner in which honours are sometimes distributed, and introduces a good deal of topical matter in a bantering and ironical vein ... If rather unduly diffuse, the dialogue is nearly always original and sparkling, and the audience are kept in merry mood throughout' (Eastbourne Chronicle, 17 May 1919).
4 Sep 1919 Tails UpProfessional
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At the Devonshire Park ‘On Thursday, for three nights, Frederick G. Lloyd presented “Tails Up” for the first time in Eastbourne, the company including William Nixon, Phil Golding, Bert Monks, Kitty Yorke, Leslie Ward, Essie Brett, Jack Leopold, Hilda Simpson, Edwin Adeler, Marie Brian, Ellaline Thorne, Arthur Laurie, Winifred Dalmaine, and Isobel Brognan. Henry Hawtry was the general manager, and Fredk. Shaw the musical director’ (The Stage, 11 September 1919).
20 Oct 1919 The AmoristProfessional
10 Nov 1919 By Pigeon PostProfessional
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The second visit of the production to Devonshire Park Theatre. Arthur Hardy (producer), Herbert Vyvyan (actor), Fred Conyers (actor), Florence Helm (actress), Baliol Holloway (actor), Reginald J. Turner (actor), Gilbert Heron (actor), Florence Burns (actress), C. Haviland Burke (actor), Goodie Willis (actress)
15 Mar 1920 Nurse BensonProfessional
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Advertised in the Eastbourne Chronicle, 13 March 1920, as performed by Marie Lohr’s principal company.
10 Mar 1930 The Luck Of The NavyProfessional
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For six nights, starring Percy Hutchison
29 Apr 1940 General PostProfessional