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Press Clippings for the week ending
Saturday, 23 February 2008

A random selection of clippings
from newspapers and magazines

Edward Marsh and Rose Sartella
fined for dancing on a Sunday,
New York, January 1901

Rose Sartella

Rose Sartella (fl. early 20th Century)
American actress and vaudeville singer and dancer

(photo: unknown, circa 1905)

'IS A CAKEWALK A DANCE?
'Justices Decide that it is, and Fine Two "Sacred Concert" Performers.
'Actors and actresses of high and low degree, some employed and some not, walked into the Court of General Sessions yesterday to listen to the trial of Edward Marsh and Rose Sartella, two vaudeville artists charged with offending public morals and decency, religious liberty, and conscience by dancing a cog dance and singing a few songs at one of "Ted" Marks's Sunday night sacred concerts at the Grand Opera House on Nov. 18 last. Police Capt. Moynihan, acting under orders from headquarters, had witnessed the "turn," which was a violation, he thought, of the Penal Code.
'Representatives of the White Rats of America, the Actors' Church Alliance, the Elks, the Grand Opera House Protective Association, and a delegation of the "Domestic Circle Club," attracted by the bright galaxy of histrionic talent assembled, sat gingerly on the court benches beside hardened hangers-on and "pullers-in" for various lawyers. Capt. Moynihan on the stand stated that Miss Sartella had danced a clog dance with Mr. Marsh, and that both sang songs. The actors denied the allegation relating to the dance.
'Manager Springer thought the pedal actions of the pair were not in a clog dance, nor yet quite a cakewalk. It was just a motion of the feet keeping tune with the music, he declared. A cakewalk, in his opinion, had less motion than a dance, and in the latter, he sad, the parties thereto swayed and glided more. The Justices looked interested.
'"I've always wanted to know," said Justice Jerome as "Ted" Marks took the stand, "of these Sunday concerts really had anything sacred in their composition."
'"Why, it was as much a sacred concert as any of the others given in town on Sunday nights," said Mr. Marks equivocally.
'"Were there any sacred songs sung by Miss Sartella?" inquired Justice Jerome.
'"Why, yes," returned Mr. Marks. "She sang 'Beyond the Gates of Paradise' and 'Way Down South in Dixie.'" This answer convulsed the courtroom and "Big Abe," the policeman, rapped in vain for order.
'The Justices, after conferring together, decided that a cakewalk was close enough to a dance to warrant them in fining both defendants $10. The fines were paid.'
(The New York Times, Thursday, 24 January 1901, p.10c)

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Lalla Selbini faints at
Hammerstein's Roof Garden,
New York, July 1906

Lalla Selbini

Lalla Selbini (c.1878-1942),
American acrobatic cyclist and juggler,
'The Bathing Belle on the Bicycle'

(photo: unknown, circa 1900)

'The very warm weather of last week proved too much for Lalla Selbini, and on Thursday night she fainted at the close of her act at Hammerstein's. Her turn entails a good deal of hard work, and this fact, with the atmospheric conditions, brought on a temporary collapse.'
(The New York Dramatic Mirror, New York, Saturday, 7 July 1906, p.18c)

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Ida Crispi in New York, 1906

Ida Crispi

Ida Crispi (fl. early 20th Century), English actress, singer and dancer

(photo: unknown, USA, circa 1905)

'Ida Crispi, the little English actress who has made quite a hit in Mlle. Champagne at Madison Square Roof Garden, is a versatile artiste who seems to flit without an effort from the daintiest part in a musical comedy to the most grotesque and eccentric character possible. As a member of the George Edwardes forces in London she sang the role of the Princess in The Country Girl and Mimosa in The Geisha, and played Angela in Florodora [all on tour] during its long London engagement. Miss Crispi's ambition, however, is to become a leading exponent of the bizarre character she is at present playing in Mlle. Champagne. A prominent manager has his eye on her with a view to securing her for a Katie Barry part in a new musical production which will be seen on Broadway early in the Fall.'
(The New York Dramatic Mirror, New York, Saturday, 21 July 1906, p.8b)

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© John Culme, 2008