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Musical Comedy on the West End Stage, 1890-1939 by L. Platt

By L. Platt

This ebook bargains the 1st complete old remedy of a tune theatre that used to be on the centre of London's West finish. From the overdue Victorian interval to the early Twenties, musical comedy used to be the one hottest kind of 'legitimate' theatre leisure. This full of life account establishes musical comedy as one of many first commercial cultures and provides interesting insights into the way it functioned ideologically as a celebrated embracing of the trendy .

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Extra resources for Musical Comedy on the West End Stage, 1890-1939

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It was not ‘analytical’ in any rigorous sense, of course, but in constructing modernity through its stagecraft and, above all, its narratives, it was inevitably engaging in a debate of considerable importance. It did not always and consistently court controversy; far from it. In insisting on reproducing the now, however, and on staging engagements between the flagging past and what was perceived as the dynamic new, its story lines participated in that great enterprise of making the modern manifest.

Musical comedy knowingly exploited itself as a commercial and progressive commodity, especially in its marketing and promotion and the implied historiography that accompanied these. Here George Edwardes figured as the visionary, arriving to continue where John Hollingshead left off, breathing life into a fading popular tradition. On the basis of a string of burlesque successes between 1885 and 1890, including Little Jack Sheppard, Faust up-to-Date, Carmen up-to-Date and Cinder-Ellen up too Late, he was generally attributed with modernizing the form.

The development of musical comedy as a new form The great age of musical comedy in Britain ran from the mid-1890s to just before the Great War when revue became the new, albeit temporary, ascendancy, challenging the supremacy that musical comedy had enjoyed for over twenty-five years. This culture was a product of both the end of Victoria’s reign and the beginning of a new century. Embodying many of the essential and often contradictory characteristics of that watershed period, musical comedy was a fin de siècle affair, retreatist in some ways and certainly escaping into romance and fantasy.

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