Minor Player / Variety Act for the week ending
Saturday, 20 September 2008

The Phydoras (fl. circa 1880-1900),
English grotesques, eccentric dancers and entertainers

The Phydoras

The Phydoras

(photo: J. Monk, Preston, Lancashire, England, circa 1887)

Alhambra Variety Theatre, Belfast, March 1886
'Proprietor, Mr W. J. Ashcroft; General Manager, Mr J.J. Stamford. - The Phydoras, in their interesting and amusing performances are grotesque contortionists and pantomimists, are among the prominent members of this week's company. The Spanish bull-fight represented by these clever artists causes hearty laughter, and the crowded houses are most enthusiastic in giving expression to their approval. Among the other new arrivals are the Saker Brothers, a capital pair of Niggers, and Mr Alexander Staunton, an excellent and versatile comic vocalist. Messrs Turle and Volto, James Shields, Fred Cairs, Miss Maggie Latour, and the Sisters Milton, who are still in the bills, were referred to last week.'
(The Era, London, Saturday, 20 March 1886, p. 16b)

'. . . the Phydoras, in their truly marvelous, eccentric, and versatile entertainments . . .'
(The Entr'acte, London, Saturday, 7 April 1888, p.3c, advertisement)

'The Phydoras are a group of performers who, as high-kickers and contortionists, show to considerable advantage. The entertainment supplied by these gentlemen remind the spectator, to some extent, of the doings of another trio [? Les Clodoches].'
(The Entr'acte, London, Saturday, 14 April 1888, p.6a)

Alhambra, Brighton, August 1896
'Managing Director, Mr J.L. Graydon; Manageress, Mrs J.L. Graydon. - The following are here this week: - Syd May, a clever imitator of well-known artists; Mons. O'Gust, with his farmyard echoes; the Musical Minim; John Alexander and company, in The Troubles of a Tourist; G.W. Fyvie, Irish comedian; the Phasey Troupe of lady dancers; the Marti Brothers, in their gymnastic entertainment; the Three Phydoras, knockabouts; Tom Woottwell, comedian and dancer; Vento, ventriloquist; the Clayton Twins and the Sisters Wood, sketch artists; Alma Power, expert dancer; and Lillie Vento.'
(The Era, London, Saturday, 29 August 1896, p. 22a)

Tivoli Theatre of Varieties, Manchester, November 1900
'Managing Director, Mr Charles A. Wilkes; Manager, Mr Arthur B. Wilkes. - Jenny Valmore is singing here, and arousing great applause; Ted Young is an excellent character comedian; Ada Twibell scores hugely; Stella Starr is a smart acrobatic dancer; the Phydoras supply a grotesque and amusing turn; Joe Archer shows himself to be a quaint patter comedian; Blanche Gerard, serio and dancer, is deserving of praise; the Four Sisters Lee do well; the Mays are capital performers; and Cliff Ryland is full of laughter-provoking powers.'
(The Era, London, Saturday, 17 November 1900, p. 8e)

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© John Culme, 2008