Cigarette card for the week ending
Saturday, 27 December 2008

Gertrude Harrison (fl. late 19th/early 20th Century),
English serpentine dancer

Gertrude Harrison

Gertrude Harrison
as she appeared in the Christmas 1898 pantomime Cinderella,
produced at the Theatre Royal, Richmond, Surrey, near London

(photo: George E. Stone, Faringdon Street, New Swindon, England, late 1890s)

This real photograph cigarette card of Gertrude Harrison was issued about 1900 in England in one of Ogden's Guinea Gold series.

'Theatre Royal, Richmond [Surrey, near London].
'On Monday, Jan. 16th [1899], the Pantomime, entitled CINDERELLA.
'Another of Mr C. St. John Denton's pantomimes, founded on the well-known story of Cinderella, was produced here on Monday. It follows in its principal incidents the old familiar tale. In the opening, Fairy Brightstar and Discord, in the persons of Miss Gerard and Miss Haye, indulge in the usual wordy warfare. Then follows a pretty Wood scene, in which the Denton troupe of lady dancers acquit themselves with ability. Then the real story begins. In the Baron's Kitchen we meet the little drudge Cinderella, presented by Miss Christine M'Gill. The fun is kept going by Mr Fred Fowler and Mr Frank Crouch as the ugly Sisters, and Mr Paul Mill and Mr C.S. Kitts as the Baron and his Page. A change of scene brings us to the Palace Gates, and here is introduced a speciality dance, à la Loie Fuller, by Miss Gertrude Harrison (Baby Bunting), called ''From Storm to Sunshine.'' It is very cleverly and gracefully executed. The Conservatory of the Palace and the Ball-room are the next scenes. In the former Messrs Manardo and Evans cause much merriment by their droll antics, and in the latter specialities are introduced by Miss Addie Lenard, the Sisters Pauline, the Three Quakers, Mr Paul Mill, and the Denton Troupe. The dénuement is reached in due course, and, after the transformation scene, the Elements, as it is called, a very merry harlequinade brings the curtain down. Miss May Dark is excellent as Prince Perfect, her singing, especially ''Rosy O'Grady,'' being highly appreciated. Miss L. Collard as Dandini, the Prince's page, dances and sings charmingly, and also assists very materially in promoting the fun.'
(The Era, London, Saturday, 21 January 1899, p. 12d)

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© John Culme, 2008