Playbill Vault's Today in Theatre History: May 24

Playbill Vault   Playbill Vault's Today in Theatre History: May 24
Angela Lansbury in Mame
Angela Lansbury in Mame Friedman-Abeles / The New York Public Library

1925 Godfrey Tearle is Hamlet in the Fellowship Players production at the Prince of Wales Theatre. The Fellowship offers Sunday performances so employed professionals have the chance to play Shakespeare.

1945 On the day before his 67th birthday, Bill Robinson is Memphis Bound! In the musical, a group of black performers puts on a performance of H.M.S. Pinafore to raise money after their ship is marooned on a sandbar. Don Walker and Clay Warnick give Gilbert and Sullivan a boogie-woogie and jazz spin. It runs on Broadway for 36 performances.

1955 Anna Massey is The Reluctant Debutante at the Cambridge Theatre in London. William Douglas Home's comedy about a spirited deb and her anxious parents, played by Celia Johnson and Wilfrid Hyde White, twirls for 752 performances.

1961 Members of the Dramatists Guild, hoping to ease the financial crisis in New York theatre, agree to take royalty cuts if other personnel will also take cuts in compensation.

1966 Jerome Lawrence and Robert E. Lee work with composer Jerry Herman to make a musical out of Patrick Dennis' book (and their 1956 play) about life with his auntie. Starring Angela Lansbury, Mame runs for 1,508 performances at the Winter Garden and Broadway Theatres in New York.

2003 American Repertory Theatre in Cambridge, Massachusetts presents the world premiere of The Sound of a Voice featuring the words of David Henry Hwang and the music of Philip Glass.

2013 A revival of Athol Fugard's 1989 play My Children! My Africa!, directed by Ruben Santiago-Hudson, opens Off-Broadway at The Pershing Square Signature Center. Allison Gallerani, James A. Williams, and Stephen Tyrone Williams star in the drama about young South Africans testing their voices in a time of political unrest.

Today's Birthdays: Arthur Wing Pinero 1855. Robert Hood Bowers 1877. Lilli Palmer 1914. Arvin Brown 1940. Alfred Molina 1953. Nell Campbell 1953. Kristin Scott Thomas 1960. John C. Reilly 1965. Leslie Kritzer 1977.

Flip through photos from the original Broadway production of Mame:

Click Here to Shop for Theatre
Merchandise in the Playbill Store
More Today in Theatre History

Blocking belongs
on the stage,
not on websites.

Our website is made possible by
displaying online advertisements to our visitors.

Please consider supporting us by
whitelisting with your ad blocker.
Thank you!