Postcard of the week ending
Saturday, 18 April 2009

Jane and Edna May in
The Darling of the Guards,
Prince of Wales's Theatre, London, 22 February 1904

Jane May, Edna May

Jane and Edna May in The Darling of the Guards

(photo: Alfred Ellis & Walery, London, 1904)

This real photograph postcard, no. 79 B, published in London in 1904 by J. Beagles & Co, shows Jane May as one of the guards, and her sister Edna May as Say-So-San in The Darling of the Guards, a burlesque of Herbert Beerbohm Tree's production of The Darling of the Gods, then running at His Majesty's Theatre, which was introduced as an interpolated sketch on 22 February 1904 into The School Girl (Prince of Wales's Theatre, London, 9 May 1903).

'The Darling of the Guards at the Prince of Wales's.
'to the many attractive features of The School Girl, which render this musical comedy still popular at the Prince of Wales's Theatre, yet another has been added in The Darling of the Guards, a most diverting travesy of the Japanese play now filling His Majesty's playhouse. In this interpolated skit Mr. Arthur Roberts as Saccharine, Minister of Bluff, takes the most prominent part, and, equally by his songs, particularly one with the chorus beginning ''Under the Beerbohm Tree'' [a burlesqued version of the then popular song, 'Under the Bamboo Tree' (a version recorded in 1902 for Edison, USA, by Arthur Collins, by courtesy of the Cylinder Preservation and Digitization Project)], by his quaint topical sallies and by his kindly mimicry, keeps his audience in fits of delighted laughter. The inimitable comedian is well supported by Miss Edna May, who copies with just sufficient exaggeration the little cries and fluttering runs and perennial kneelings of Miss Lena Ashwell's charming Yo-San.'
(The Illustrated London News, London, Saturday, 27 February 1904). For further information on 'Under the Bamboo Tree,' see John Kenrick's

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© John Culme, 2009