George Edwardes

Definition

Theater

  • (1852 - 1915) British theater manager, known as theGuv'nor, who pioneered the musical. Edwardes was businessmanager at the Savoy Theatre before taking over, with John Hollingshead(1827 - 1904), the old Gaiety Theatre in 1885. In 1886Edwardes became sole manager of the Gaiety and began to replace theburlesque shows with works in the new genre of musical comedy. Hestaged his first musical, In Town, at the Gaiety in 1892; thefollowing year he produced A Gaiety Girl at the Prince of Wales'sTheatre. Edwardes was the creator of the Gaiety Girls, achorus line famous for their beauty.

    In 1893 Edwardes opened Daly's Theatre in London forthe American manager Augustin Daly (1839 - 99), and made it anotherhome for musical comedy, achieving success with such productions asA Country Girl (1902) and The Merry Widow (1907).

    Ten years later he opened his own new Gaiety Theatre, hisgreatest success there being Our Miss Gibbs, which had itspremiere in 1909 and ran for 636 performances.

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