Variety (January 1920)

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• ■ -■.'.' i VARIETY 25 -| IN AUSTRALIA PUBLICITY IN LONDON Sydney, Not. 15. Her Majesty'• "Going Up 1 '; Criterion. -A Tallor-Made Man"; Palace, "Old Lady SI"; Tivoll, "My Lady Frayla" (revival); Puller'*. Vaudeville and Revue; Grand Opera House, Stock; Crystal' Palace, Pic- tures; Hoyt'f, Pictures. Phil Perslral Is playing a ■eaeon for Herbert PuglUs ee. "The Sentimental Bloke" transferred to the Lyceum. Jack Monro baa secured the Allied Armies Champlensbtp pictures for ex- hibition at. Hippodrome. -Llghtnln'," with. John D. O'Hara, haa made a record (or a drama tlo show in Melbourne. Soil Bros.' Circus opens its season In Newcastle with "Upside Down." trouble with our Australian productions Is that the producers do not pick their types, believing any old thins will do. . until this Is remedied and not till then will we be able to compete with the world's market. .. * '' " The first of the Wilfred Luoas^Snowy Baker dim productions will be released this month. The title has not yet been announced. "Old Lady SI" was presented at the Palace Oct. 81 by J. & N. Tait. The sweetness and charm of its appealing story met with the Instant approval of a large audience. Sara Allgood .was given an ovation at the end of the play For her acting of the "Old Lady." Maggie Moore came next (or applause. A Ions; season should result. - . Peggy Pryde, English comedienne, Is playing Brisbane -for Fuller*. J. C "Williamson is presenting ' Ka- tlnka" for a run at-Royal, Adelaide. "Pals First," with Jerome Patrick and Greta- Brutnelle, will be presented for first time in Australia at Theatre Royal, Brisbane, Nov. IE, by J. & N. Talt. ■ • -«•*.-. . Union Theatres, Ltd., reviving Chaplin's "Sunnyslde" at Empress this -week. Drawing poor houses. "The Face at the .Window," produced by the D. B. O'Connor Feature Films, Ltd., from stage play of same name, under direction o( Charles VUUers, was presented at Australian Theatre Nov. 14. This is the third Australian-made fea- ture to be released during last eight weeks. When presented on the stage years ago the play created a' sensation by the number of fainting cases occur- Ing among the audience each night dur- ing appearance of the "Face." It is the rankest kind of melodrama, fifty per cent worse than the worst penny dread- ful written. The story la of "Le Loup," a notorious French criminal with a rec- ord of thirty-six murders. When falling to secure the girl of his desire, he pro- ceeds to do up the entire household. Before he can reach his fortieth victim or more he is shot by a detective. The acting is bad, also direction. The only thing in the whole production Is the photography done by Lacy Perclval. The picture as an entertainment Is useless. It might do as a burlesque; that is about Its limit. The Black and White Revue company is a success on the Andy Kerr circuit. "Tails Up," the London revue, has scored a success at the Tlvpll, Melbourne, Minnie Love, Phil Smith and George Gee are in it G. F. Hall arrived on the "Ventura." He will open on the Fuller circuit. Plumpton Wilson has sailed for Bom- bay. _ • "Daddies," with Jerome Patrick, Is playing a season in Brisbane. The drat of the Nordlsk Film Com- pany's pre-war releases was presented at Shell Theatre last week under title "A Man There Was." Eileen Gates will play the leading role in "The Man Who Came Back" with the D. B. O'Connor Touring Company, playing /he -small towns o( New South Wales. Miss Gates was formerly an usher at the Criterion Theatre. - Phil Selsnlck, D. J. Selznick and H. Fine arrived here last week to open offices in this city under title "Selsnlck Picture Corporation, ■ Australia, Ltd." Mrs. B. Selsnlck, Mrs D. J. Selsnlck and daughter are included in the party. Op- erations will commence at once. PreSton and Perrin will go to Africa (or African Trust Theatres, Ltd. Hugh D. Mcintosh, president Tivoll Theatres, Ltd.. will give to the six most beautiful girls in Australia a contract for six months to appear in "As You Were" at a salary of MO per week. The competitors will be Judged by a well- known artist, actor and sculptor. The offer does not apply to professionals. Now In Australia we need fresh talent, especially vaudeville acts. Since the outbreak of war in 1914, and up to the present moment, there have been very few Imported acts appearing on the Australian stage. Tivoll Theatres. Ltd., has forsaken vaudeville for revue. Acts are used in the revues, however. :--■ "Struck OH" Is a locally made picture from the stage play of the same name, featuring Maggie Moore and H. R. Roberta The redeeming (eature Is the photography, otherwise the entire film should be scrapped. One great IN LONDON. The loss on "Eastward Ho" at the Alhambra must be very heavy. Over £30,000 had been spent on it before the curtain went up. But, front the start the show was too heavy and it smoth- ered itself, besides which there wasn't a hearty laugh in the piece and all the endeavors of the cast could hot make it bright As a last recourse Laddie Cliff was brought in but all to no par- pose and now the socalled revue is to be replaced by pictures. George Broadhurst's thriller "The Crimson Alibi" appears to be settling down to a career of prosperity at the Strand. * Mile. Yvonne Reynolds from the Casino de Paris has joined C. B. Coch- ran's "Maggie" company at the Ox- ford Darewski has written special numbers for her and Marcel Latte has composed a new finale for the first act George Graves and Winifred Barnes have also been.given new-material » * The West End Managers have unan- imously approved the Standard con- tract for players appearing: in West End productions, while the touring contract goes to the ballot of all A. A. members. Meanwhile the Board of Trade has offered official arbitration. When' the contract id ultimately set- tled on it is proposed to call it the "Valentine Standard Contract." The custom of adopting straight plays or farces to music is steadily growing and three more have been transformed into musical comedies. These are "His Ex- cellency the Governor," "Who's the Lady?'' and "A Night Out." The last will be produced by Banister Howard, a manager long associated with "The Belle of New York." . .After many announcements and con- tradictions the management of the Sur- rey seem to have at last made up their minds to open with a revival of "When" Knights Were Bold.* This is due for Boxing Day, with Bromley Challoner in the late James Welch's part After five years war service with the colors Huntley Wright made his reap- pearance in "The Kiss Call" at the Gaiety in the place of Stanley Lupino, needed at Drury Lane. Another new- comer to the cast was Madge Saunders who married Leslie Henson the follow- ing day. Harry and Burton Lester are cross- ing to America in March to open in New York. Their original, act, an up- side-down walking act, has been trans- formed into a well-dressed and staged vocal and instrumental trio. Publicity in London is in the throes of development; and for a long time past the London paragraphers, while desiring to be known as conservative to the finger-tips, have been unloading publicity yarns,without knowing it that would gladden the heart of any Ameri- can press agent For confirmation of this, inquire at the offices of C B. Cochran, Piccadilly Circus. The presence of the first Yankee press agent to be identified with a rep- resentative British producing firm dis- covered many things that are of value to the American actor or actress mak- ing a first visit to London. Yankee actors and actresses have been abused in the past by threats that false cables would be sent to America governing their. respective premieres in London unless they met the financial requests of certain free lance press agents. This condition was met squarely by the Yankee press agent, and in no un- mistakable words the free lance press agents were told they would be ex- posed and exposed they have been,: Any American actor or actress vis- iting London under a contract with a British producing firm for appearance in any show under a firm's manage- ment using a house press agent", should NOT be led into believing he or she is obliged to pay house press agents a sum of money to overcome the .al- leged feelings towards Americans in order to gain publicity. There are sev- . The man who at the Granville, Wal- ham Green, threw an apple at one of the members of a revue chorus, severer ly injuring her was fined £5 at the West London Police Court for assault Had he been a starving man who had stolen the apple he'd have. got six months' hard labor. ' —' ''The Red Mill" will be presented at the Empire on Boxing night, the cast including Little Tien. This is nOt the first time the - comedian has deserted his single turn to appear in musical comedy. . ^ : ~~ His Majestys Letters Patent have passed the great Seal of Ireland grant- ing authority to build and maintain another thcatrejn the City of Dublin for a period of 21 years. The new theatre will be called "The Scala." BWAY HITS HIGH PRICE SPOT. (Continued from page 1.3) "Gold Diggers" (Lyceum); "Rose of China" (Lyric); "Unknown Woman" (Elliott); "Civilian Clothes" (Moros- co); "Monsieur Beaucaire" (Amster- dam; "Greenwich Village Follies" (Bayes); "For. the Defense" (Play- house); "Jest" (Plymouth); "The Sign on the Door" (Republic); "Buddies" (Selwyn); "Sca~ndal" (39th Street); "Irene? ( Vanderbilt); "Passing Show" (Winter Garden) and "Miss Millions" (Punch & Judy). The latter show is on the last week of its buy which was for about 150 seats a night. Reports from managers to owners of shows operating on the one-night stands show that the Christmas ma- tinee business has been the worst ex- perienced in show business. The night business held up to a good average. The Congress Theatre, Saratoga Springs, N. Y., heretofore playing pic- tures, started playing 3 acts, each last half, last Thursday; booked by Bob Hutchinson, Keith Family Depart- ment. The Lights Club is arranging to stage benefits in New York and Chi- cago, during January. Frank Tinney will" have charge of the Chicago show, and Norman Manwaring will put on •the New York performance. eral silver-tongued press agents work- ing for British producing firms, ever striving to falsify press agent condi- tions in London in order to have the Americans, "come through." The most valuable publicity in Lon- don is given by the newspapermen themselves, and it all results by the way these newspapermen estimate a . premiere. If an American actor or - actress is a solid hit on the opening night, there is more free publicity in London for either than all the money can purchase. In plain vernacular, if London likes you, London will love you, and if anything the London news- papermen will overdo the hand of wel- 1 come in his columns. In this respect the system of publicity in London is vastly different from that in America, for in London a press agent cannot make bricks without clay. If you are an American theatrical visitor in London don't imagine one of those silver- tongued press agents can promote your interests in the newspapers,- if you haven't made a hit at the opening. This is the peculiarity of the publicity game in London, and a tip to the American actor and actress will save both much money. :\ • ' ;?V Only recently there was an Ameri- can actress appearing in London in a West End revue. Her publicity wits weak because the critics took no no- tice of her when she opened.' She wanted publicity, for she was accus- tomed to it in America. A friend of hers tipped off an opposition press agent to the revue press agent, with the result the former was employed by the American actress. There was a handful of press notices planted by the engaged press agent in a mediocre pub- lication, furnishing the temporary "flash," so-called, to show the actress some results for the money she was handing out It was merely a case of double-crossing on the part of the press agent who accepted the job to satisfy the craving of the American actress for publicity in London, both towards his own boss, and the pre as agent of the revue in which the actress was appearing. There is'a clique of London press agents who will take advantage of the ignorance of the American actor and actress • arriving in London until they are found out. There are many press agents in London who are. honest toward the American artist, but the majority are inclined to take advan- tage of the American actor or actress making a first visit to Piccadilly. So in the future if the American artist will only abide by the decision of the London theatrical writer, and consider publicity a dead issue if the attention at the premiere doesn't warrant enthu- siasm from the theatrical writer. there 11 he no more gatherings of ^laughing London press agents at the Cavour," Once established, the Ameri- can artist will be so called upon for interviews from London theatrical writers that it will be hard for either he or she to believe that the London newspapers are so generous with their space. Let the American artist be guided by what the^ reputable critics of London think in the write-ups of the premieres, and the well-oiled Brit- ish press agents will no longer find prey in the ignorance of the American artist, as to how best come to the at- tention of the London public The grafting British press agent is a per- sistent chap, and most gentlemanly in every respect, but allow the American actor and actress to take a tip from a Yankee press agent, who has made a study of conditions in Piceadilly, and who has talked over the matter with the very best of London's newspaper dramatic editors, and allow your fate to rest in the hands of the dramatic critics. • ' .- '■ : m ■■:.■•; $ 'I