Variety (October 1922)

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VAUDEVILLE ^■ Friday, October 6, 1022 I MANY AaS BOOKED DIREa" FOR KEITH'S OFHCE ROUTES 4' I Big Time Vaudeville Agents Can't Foresee Their Future—Deadlock Over Salaries Still On—No Present Prospect of Break. Pooklngs in the Keiili ofTlot', boih i?i the hla and small time dopari- monts, continue lighter day by day than in any season in the past within the recollection of the old'r established booking agents doing business on the two floors. Aside from the deadlock over sal- aries, with the acts nfusing to nc- ci pt roates and playing from week to week on salary cutt., a factor that has figured largely In the agents doing a much smaller volume of business in general than in past seasons, is that the Keith people are booking more acts direct this season than ever before. These acts booked direct arc not acts that have hitherto had an agent, as a rule, but acts that walk into the Keith oflice and make it a point to take their propositions di- rect to headquarters. In past seasons most of these acts would have sought out agents and arranged to have them represent them. The word has evidently gone out, one act telling the other, that the Keith office had both a better or- ganzation to handle direct bookings and is more inclined to do business direct with acts this season than In the past, for Iteith agents who have been accustomed to receiving a cer- tain number of applications weekly from acts out through the country BROWN WITH KEITH'S Resigns as Booking Manager of Canadian Vaudeville Houses Clark r.rown, booking supervisor of the Canadian United Theatres, booked through the Keith Exchange, has resigned. James Aloz will in future book the Princess, Moi\treal, and the Hamilton house when ii is ready. Mr. Brown will retain his desk In the Keith office and will remain with tlio Keith organization, prob- iibly in an executive capacity, lie has represented the Canadian United for the past 15 years and will remain on Its board of director;?, also retaining his stock in tho ci.- cuir. ' PLENTY OF SMALL TIME TURNS; LIGHT DEMAND Average Price Acfs More Reg- ularly Engaged—Pop Audi- ences Demanding More PLENTY OF MATERIAL K«ith Office Bookers Point to Bill* ' in Much ''Doubling" NO COMMONWEALTH Vera Michelena and Fred Hille- brand't Reason for Leaving Vera Michelena and Fred Hille- brand left the I^kldie Dowling Shu- bert unit, "Hello Miss Radio" last week, declining to accede to Dow- llng's request that they work on tho commonwealth plan while the unit was being reorganized. "Hello, Miss Radio" opened at the to represent them have been re- ; Crescent, Brooklyn, Sept. 25. The ceiving far less than their usual quota of late. Agents, In discussing the booking direct condition, have been wonder- ing whether the creation of several new departments, with the actor being granted so many more con- cessions In the past and encouraged to place himself generally In closer touch with the Keith organization, might not eventually lead to an abandonment of tho agents alto- gether, with the Keith office devis- ing some sort of different method of doing business than the current one. The rapidly growing custom of doing business direct is worrying the agents, largo and small. Another matter noted by agents is that in past seasons when acts did business direct with the Keith oflloo "they were generally turned over to some agent shortly after, it being believed it was necessary for the act by the act itself to have a representative. There are more than sufficient acts to supply present demands, according to several of the leading K'^ith agents, and there appears little likelihood of the deadlock be- tween the acts and Keith ortlco over tlie salary question being brolicn for the present. Master aitd Kraft Revue, Biliy Mc- Dermott and Callahan and Bliss went Into the cast last Monday at Astoria. DIVORCES Mrs. Adeline Kelsey, profession- ally known as La Rose, of La Hose and La Rose, a trapeze act, was granted a divorce last week in Cali- fornia from her husband and part- ner. Mrs. Kelsey testiHed that La Rose tried to drop her from a lofty trapeze. . ». There Is no shortage of material for small time vaudeville houses. The L^ew Circuit reports an un- usual supply of acts for ©very avail- able spot. The same Is true of the other In- dependant circuits, according to re- ports. The cheaper grade of acts are plentiful with very little de- mand. The average turn with a salary of $250 weekly is In a better strategical position to find bookings than the cheaper acts. -»- This is due to the edjucation of the vaudeville public who demand better acts at pop prices than here- tofore. The neighborhood houses which usually include one or more acts that have played the big time circuits, are responsible for the de- mand for a higher grade show. Tho bookers report that after dis- counting the weather they have had to steadily increase the quality of their shows to satisfy patrons. This applies to houses that formerly got by with the cheapest sort of vau- deville and a picture a few seasons back. The advent of the modern large capacity house with pop prices and six acts of .vaudeville with pictures has made It hard for the smaller vaudeville houses to compete unless giving an equally strong vaudeville bill. One Independent agent Is author- ity for the statement that 75 per cent, of the acts on his lists laying olT were turns receiving less than $200 weekly. These acts have been going along season after season without progressing. The Keith bookers report plenty of material available for the week to week bookings and point to the caliber of the vaudeville bills this season as against last season at this time in proof the deadlock between tho Keith office and the artists, as to salaries, has not as yet mitigated against the merit of the shows. Comedy acta are always in de- mand, also feature acts and turns that can hold spots on the bills, but this Is the only type causing book- ing men any wori^. The weck-totYwoek method of booking continued since the season opened is still in vogue with routes plentiful at "cuts," the bookers say. Several acts "doubling" this week In metropolitan houses (playing two or more houses), all of the "feature" classificatlorn, seemed to bear out the contention a scarcity of this type of turn continued to exist. Meanw.hile, many acts are taking the week to week bookings in pref- erence to accepting routes at a "cut." GRPHEUM TO BUILD ITS OWN PRODUCING PLANT "OLD HOMESTEAD" ON KEITH Tho Keith ollioo has secured the film "The Old Homestead," to be played in tho Keith, Proctor and Moss houses. Daisy Martin, a colored phono- graph record artist, is heading a road show that goes on tour next week. H«'r Royal Jazz Tigers (band) and two other acts will be in support. ACTS OUT FOR FILM Plan Wholesale Operations— Michigan Boulevard Build- igg for This Use TWO HOUSES TAKEN » : OFF UNIT CIRCWT • •■»., Des Moines and Syracuse-^ Each Split Week, Doing About $2,500 /" :>\\ . • ..' Chicago, Oct. 4. The Orpheimi circuit will soon make an official announcement of plans already under way for the construction of a flve-story building In the Latin quarter of Chicago. The new building will be close to the new Wrigley building on Mich- igan boulevard. The purpose of th^ new building is to have some ex- clusive place to house the produc- tion department of the Orpncum circuit. The five stories of the build- ing will be divided as follows: On the first floor will be a 300- seat theatre, with a stage, In which all production acts turned out in this building will be offered to the bookers for approval. The second floor will be devoted to the employ- ment department and registration and lounging rooms. The third floor is the work shop and rehearsal hall.s, and on this floor the actual producing will be done. The fourth The Loew circuit will drop one noor will be entirely t^ken over by or more vaudeville acts from its programs in the houses played the Metro feature, "Prisoner of Zenda." Tho number of acts eliminated will depend upon the length of the picture after it has been cut. The original print runs about two hours. PANTAGES' L. A. 7 P. C. OFF - " San Francisco, Oct. 4. Pantages Is advertising 7 per cent, bonds Issued On his Los An- I geles house and ground. the costuming department and the top or fifth floor Is given over to tho scenic studios. This is really the first steps that have been taken by the Orpheum circuit to put into force their plans which were vaguely outlined here- tofore. From these indications It looks as though the Orpheum cir- cuit is going into the producing end on a bigger scale than was antici- pated, for tho new building will be the only one of its kind in Chicago. Ground will bo broken for the new structure within tho next 30 days. ORPHEUM-W. V. M. A. POOL Press and Club Departments Under Joint Supervision Chicago, Oct. 4. The order to transform the W. V. M. A. department of the Orpheum circuit Is still In operation with a few changes developing this week which arc just the beginning toward this end. The fair department, which is under the direction of Ed- ward Marsh, will move off of the fifth floor of the State Lake build- ing and occupy private rooms on the seventh floor. The club department, now known as the W. V. M. A. club depart- ment, Is to be renamed the club department of the Orpheum circuit and W. V. M. A. It Is operated by George Van. The W. V. M. A. string of houses will place their publicity work In the hands of .Tack Stratton, who is from the coast, while Floyd Scott, who was brought In from New York, will oversee the work of Stratton and direct the publicity for the local Orpheum houses, besides -doing the preos work for all of thfi, Orpheum houses to the coast. FINED FOR TAX FRAUD Fred Linick and Raymond Jacoby Guilty in Juggled Returns Chicago, Oct. 4. The government was lenient in dealing with the embezzlement charges of war tax against Fred Linick and Itaymond .Tacoby, when the case came up last week. The total amount of embezzlement was 136,000, and after various pleas were heard, the offenders were fined $500 each. The offense is punLsh- able with a year in Leavenworth, but this phase of the penalty was not Imposed upon the defendants. The moneys were used to finance further theatrical ventures by Lin- ick anff Jacoby. Nat Kalscheim Engaged Chicago, Oct. :?. Nat Kalscheim, one of the booking managers with the W. V. M. A., is engaged to Ksthor Itosenberg, a non-professional. Hf> works under the wing of Sam Kahl. MAD? ? ? SHURA RULOWA and Her **BALLET RUSSE" Played nineteen steady weeks and came to Chic.igo exprrting (o rest and be with th< ir families, lixit Alexander I'ant.'ipts s.'ii<l. "On with the Dance." .*<o they are now ICiistward bound, completing additional week" TIIEKKFOHi: THE MEAN RUSSIAN LOOK. HARRIS UNDER ARREST Cincinnati, Oct. 4. Harry Harris, age 24. of New York, alleged vaudeville booking agent who came here several months ago, was arrested, charged with ob- taining money under false pretenses. .Lygia Well of Cincinnati and 'leorge ITall of Norwood. (>., nny they each gave Harris $2.') to get them on the stage, but he failed to do 5n.- A contract exhibited by Hal! .•^pecined, that for the quarter cen- tury and 10 per cent, of tho salary, the ai)plir.'int would be given work. Jack 'Middleton, who was In \audevine 14 years, is the only lie* n.sied booking agent lure, Tho ease of Harris continued un- til Thursday. Des Moines and Syracuse hav^j been taken off of the Shubert vaiule-^ ville circuit. The unit shows started playing In each city with tho open- ' Ing of the season. Neither towii yielded at any time over |2,600 for its half we^. ,; The split with Des Moines was Omaha for the first half. Omaha remains on the wnit time. It ha« been doing about |4,0ao for the first half (four days, opening Sunday),'* The three open days taken up hy Des Moines may be f-lled in by th^ Affiliated Theatres Corporation witlv one nighters or a three days' stand. Syracuse formerly split with Utica, but Utlca was removed a cou* " pie of weeks ago. For the present, ! the absence of Syracuse leaves an . open week on the time. Weak houses on the Affiliated j Circuit playing the Shubert vaude- i ville units will be dropped by the Affiliated where the house falls be* low the average set by the circuit for a period of two consecutive weeks. Bridgeport and Worcester recently added to the circuit must show an immediate spurt in busi* ness to remain on the circuit. J. H. Herk issued a statement this week that this policy will be ia I effect from now on. Several of the houses that have been regarded as fair stands have been alibied on account of the unusual hot weather and other conditions. From now on they win be judged strictly on thei|^ merits. ji The publicity department of th<P Affiliated has been working over-, time to bolster up the towns not considered as having received enough exploitation with the result that several of the houses bettered^ their previous week's totals. ..^ Syracuse, N. Y., Oct. 4. The Shuberts are reported aftei* the Empire here, to play their unit , shows. A representative is in th# city today and is said to have of* fered < 10,000 yearly for the housed now playing stock. The offer waSt refused. The Intention Is to play tf split week as at the Welting. noiC closed to the units, with road showtf filling in the open time. ALOZ BOOKING MOORE HOUSES The Temples, Rochester and De- troit, the Moore houses, tormerlf, booked out of the Keith office bj; the late Carl Lothrop, are now be« i ing booked by J. H. Aloz, who als9 has the bookings for the Canadian circuit theatres, supplied by th* same office. UNIT NOTES Matthews and Ayres have beeil engaged by J. H. Herk for Welier and Fields' "Reunited." They joined . at the Crescent, Brooklyn, Monday. Ada Ayres will succeed Lynn Can- tor as the prima donna. Miss Can- tor replaced Frances Dcmarest after the Central, New York, engagement* Keno and Green will replace Mc- Cormick and Regay In the "Whirl of New York' unit, at St. Paul Oc- tober 7. - r-i Homer Mason and Marguerite Keeler were added to the Gerard "Town Talk " Shubert u*iit show at the Majestic, Bo.ston, this week. The team will offer their comedy play- let, "Oh!" in the vaudeville section, and will work In the revue also after ' a week or so. The Chestnut street opera house, Philadelphia, will reopen Oct. !• with Weber and Fields In "Re- united." The house has been de- layed, owing to a violation of the building laws placed against it ju»t prior to opening. ; r , . Ge rge Gallagher's '■.Mtillipan*<« Folii( .s" has been retlt'.ed ' r.road- way i ' 'ollioMi" —^few |»»por Iiiih been, <»r(lercd and will be distributed when tho show reaches Omaha next week. The r;rf))gie .le^sels unit, mnliing the jump from St. Paul to Chij-apfo to appear nl the Shuf)ert. Kn.rrlo- wood, failed to arrive in fimr Sun-j day noon to give a matinee. J