Celebrity for the week ending
Saturday, 13 September 2008

Louie Sherrington (fl. early 1860s-1878),
English music hall serio-comic vocalist,
who retired in 1875 because of ill-health

Louie Sherrington

Louie Sherrington, for whom a farewell benefit was held upon her retirement
from the music hall stage at the Royal Music Hall, London, on Monday evening, 22 November 1875

'The Dancing Belle',
also sung by Kate Garstone, Harriett Coveney and Emma Alford.

'Yes! They call me the dancing belle,
A fact you may all see well,
The way I now dance, you'll see at a glance
That I am the dancing belle.'

(song sheet cover with lithograph portrait of Miss Sherrington
by Alfred Concanen, probably after a photograph;
printed by Siere & Burnitt, published by C. Sheard, London, late 1860s)

The Royal Music Hall, London
'Miss Louie Sherrington captivates all hearts, not only by her pretty face but by the fascinating style in which she renders her choice selection of songs. One of these is a love story with which the ringing of the bells has a good deal do do, the lover, of course, ringing a belle in earnest at the end. In princely attire, Miss Sherrington introduced a medley, and sang the popular ''Once Again'' with remarkable sweetness and taste. Applause loud and protracted attended her efforts.'
(The Era, London, Sunday, 3 January 1875, p. 16b)

The Cambridge Music Hall, London
'On Tuesday evening, when we were present, we discovered that the entrainment was for the benefit of Miss Louie Sherrington, the popular serio-comic vocalist, who has been of late prostrated by severe illness. Besides the ordinary - or, perhaps, we should say extraordinary - company attached to the Hall, there appeared on this occasion the members of the Austin troupe, whose rifle feats are calculated to astonish all who witness them . . . Miss Louie Sherrington during the proceedings was led to the footlights by Miss Ellen [sic] Wesner - still in the evening dress of a gentleman - was in a neat and complimentary speech fulfilled her self-imposed duty in most able fashion. Miss Sherrington - too indisposed to sing - also tried a pretty little speech of thanks, and won the hearty and sympathetic cheers of those present . . .'
(The Era, London, Sunday, 19 May 1878, p. 4a)

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'Of the tavern concert-rooms [in London], one of the earliest to burst its chrysalis state, and emerge into the full-grown music hall, was the Grapes, in the Southwark Bridge Road. This establishment was also one of the first to style itself a music hall in the modern sense of the term, and under the description of the Surrey Music Hall was well known to pleasure-seekers early in the [eighteen] forties. The hall, which was prettily decorated, was capable to seating as many as a thousand persons, and in the upper hall might be seen a valuable collection of pictures, which the enterprising proprietor, Mr. Richard Preece, had secured from M. Phillips, a French artist whom he was instrumental into introducing to the British public. The hall was provided with an excellent orchestra under the direction of Mr Zéluti, while the arduous position of manage was filled with great credit by Mr T. Norris. The clever Vokes Family were among the many well-known entertainers who appeared here. The company here used on an average to cost about 30 a week. Louie Sherrington sang here on many occasions, and Willie and Emma Ward were very successful in their song "The Gingham Umbrella," besides whom Pat P. Fannin, a smart dancer, and Mr and Mrs Jack Carroll, negro banjoists and dancers, were rare favourites with its patrons.'
(Charles Douglas Stewart and A.J. Park, The Variety Stage, T. Fisher Unwin, London, 1895, pp. 47 and 48)

'Early women stars were Georgina Smithson, Louie Sherrington and Annie Adams. The last two were contemporaries and mostly sang versions of the songs of Vance and Leybourne, adapted for women. For instance, "Up In A Balloon, Boys," became "Up In A Balloon, Girls." Louie Sherrington was a very lovely women with a delightful voice; a predecessor of Florrie Forde, Annie Adams was of the majestic type then so admired, she was "a fine woman" - there was a lot of her, with a bust to match. With her very powerful voice, rich personality, a jolly, laughing face and manner, she banged her songs across the footlights and made the house rise at her.'
(W. Macqueen Pope, The Melodies Linger On, W.H. Allen, London, 1950, p. 314)

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© John Culme, 2008