Playbill Vault's Today In Theatre History: January 11
11 Jan 2016
1899 "I would rather play Ibsen than eat — and that's often what it amounts to," said Eva Le Gallienne, born in London today. Her determination and drive will lead her to a stage debut in Monna Vanna at the Queen's Theatre in London in 1914; her Broadway debut will take place one year later in the comedy Mrs. Boltay's Daughters. She will appear in countless shows, and in 1937 will play Hamlet with Uta Hagen as her Ophelia. In 1926 she will found the Civic Repertory Theatre with the motto "Theatre should be an instrument for giving, not a machinery for getting."
1927 Opening night of the musical Piggy, by Lew Brown and Cliff Friend, based on the play The Rich Mr. Hoggenheimer. This show, which ran 83 performances at the Royale Theatre, is one of the few musicals in history that decided to change its title after opening night. The new monicker: I Told You So.
1936 English actor-producer Ian Robertson is dead at the age of 76. While in America he acted with Edwin Booth, Modjeska, and the Frohmans, among others. He was stage manager and producer at the Boston Museum Theatre. He also wrote several plays.
2009Tom O'Horgan, the Drama Desk Award-winning, Tony-nominated director who brought a downtown ethic to his Broadway projects, including the original Broadway productions of Hair and Jesus Christ Superstar, dies at age 84.