Great War Theatre

Performances at this Theatre

Date Script Type
25 Oct 1915 The Frenchwoman Professional
21 Feb 1916 For Those In Peril Professional
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Performed by Miss Beaumont Collins.
3 Apr 1916 The Mystery Gun Professional
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Fred. Clayden and his fellow artistes introduce "The Mystery Gun." The outstanding feature of the sketch apart from some capital dialogue is the explosion of the big gun, giving the sensational illusion of firing Miss Erica O'Foyle through an armour-plated target. The feat was very neatly performed, as was the whole sketch. Lloyd Morgan an artistic comedian, deservedly gained the high esteem of the large audience; the Whitakers a comedy duo, and a pantomime burlesque admirable gauge the pace of the modern musical hall audience; whist Albert Lepena from the Coliseum in burlesque songs and dances was another very popular entertainer. (Coventry Evening Telegraph - Tuesday 04 April 1916)
19 Jun 1916 Too Late Professional
25 Jun 1917 The Frenchwoman Professional
30 Jul 1917 Jack Ashore by The Jutland Boys Other
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Billed as 'seven wounded and discharged sailors, several of whom took part in the Jutland naval battle, and a naval veteran, now in his 80th year' H. G. Wilkins was advertised as having been on a raft of 14 hours, whilst 'Gus Keeling' was personally instrumental in the rescue of the Duke of Fife and his family on the wrecking of the 'Delhi' and another R. J. Westley, was an instructor to the first Naval Division which landed at Antwerp. (see Coventry Standard, 27 July 1917). The act had top billing as one of 10 entertainments.
19 Nov 1917 Joyland Professional
17 Dec 1917 In the Trenches Professional
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Performed for the week by cast including Harry Buss. Other acts on the same bill: Nixon Grey (comedian), the Five of Clubs (comedy juggling), Charles Mildare (whistler), Madame Dalmere's table circus (50 performing rabbits, cats, dogs, rats, doves and monkeys), the Ryewodes in a musical scena 'Music Awakes', Lal Wyndham (comedienne and novelty dancer), 'and the war films'. 'a most laughable concoction, depicting life on the battlefield...Harry Buss is responsible for much of the mirth...all...have served with His Majesty's forces or are over military age' (Coventry Evening Telegraph, 18 December 1917)
14 Jan 1918 A Cushy Job Professional
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The Coventry Evening Telegraph, 12 January 1918, advertised on the bill at the Hippodrome next week ‘Capt. Baker & Cecil M. Hadley present “A Cushy Job” (By Captain E. C. Baker), a military comedy, featuring Howard Law and Fanny Wallace’. Also, ‘A sketch full of life and action is presented [at the Hippodrome] by Captain E. C. Baker and Cecil M. Hadley, entitled “A Cushy Job”’ (Coventry Evening Telegraph, 15 January 1918).
22 Apr 1918 True Values Professional
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Performed for the week at this venue. Also in the bill were: Miss Florence Wray, Archie Goodall (hoop act), Sargeant Brennan (diabolo player), Walter Wade (vocal comedian), Lowdini (Tramp Violinist), Florence Rattray (Soprano).
13 May 1918 Flying Colours Professional
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‘There is no need to refer at any length to the humorous cartoons of Captain Bruce Bairnsfather. They have been seen on every screen at every picture palace, and have brought the artist renown. Most people should, therefore, be well-acquainted with the Captain’s original character “ Old Bill.’’ If there are any who are not they should visit the Hippodrome this week and see Harry Thurston in that role. Harry Thurston is, course, a born humorist, but he excels as “Old Bill,” who at one time is half inclined to “slaughter” the rest of his battalion and finish the “on his own!” The production is entitled “The Johnson ‘Ole “ (by Captain Bairnsfather and B. MacDonald [sic]), and the scene is “Plug Street Trench,” with the time about Christmas, 1914. As an episode of real trench humour the “Johnson ‘Ole” is splendid: and Harry Thurston is well backed by the other members of the company’. Coventry Evening Telegraph, 14 May 1918.
22 Jul 1918 Nosey Knows Professional
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Performed for the week by Will Hay (actor), Dorothy Frostick (actress), Ethel Arden (actress), Walter Dale (actor), J. H. Cleve (music). Also Fred Karno and John Gerant (co-writers). 'Hippodrome patrons are again fortunate having provided for their delectation another of Fred Karno’s farcical musical sketches. It is a show constructed, as Karno’s usually are, for laughs and fun, and these are produced in abundance. For the time being the audiences may cast their worries and troubles to the winds and enjoy themselves to the top of their bent. The leading fun-maker of the lot is Will Hay, a comedian always sure of a hearty welcome in Coventry, and in Nosey Knows he is untiring in his efforts to tickle the risible faculties of his audiences. He is well supported by Dorothy Frostick in the role of leading lady, and other clever artistes, including Ethel Arden and Walter Dale. Fred Karno and John Gerant are jointly responsible for the “book”, and the music is J. H. Cleve. Nosey Knows is essentially a farcical musical sketch, and not a revue ... The special war films complete a capital entertainment’. (Coventry Evening Telegraph, 23 July 1918)
16 Sep 1918 The Honourable Gertrude Professional
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‘The well-known actress, Miss Esme Beringer, will appear here [the Hippodrome] next week in a comedy, entitled, “The Honourable Gertrude.” She will be supported by a company which includes Miss Mary Brough’ (Coventry Standard, 13 September 1918). The Coventry Herald, 14 September 1918, advertised at the Hippodrome the following week ‘Miss Esme Beringer and West End Company, present a Comedy Sketch, entitled: The Honourable Gertrude. Caste includes Miss Esme Beringer and Miss Mary Brough’. Several other acts were on the bill including a ‘comedy cat act’ with Tillie, ‘the only cat looping the human loop’.
19 Oct 1918 A Vagabond and his Conscience Unknown