100 Years Ago in Winnipeg Vaudeville: Dec 25

December 25, 1919

100 years ago today, the Winnipeg Vaudeville Theatres were offering up an amazing array of weird, wild and wonderful solutions to the mid-winter blues. Just imagine being able to chose from this menu of options:

Pantages – More suitable vaudeville offerings for Christmas week could not have been chosen than those which comprise the current bill at the Pantages Theatre. The bill is particulary well balanced. There are attractions for all classes of theatre-goers: and all children who have seen Little Hip and Napoleon have left the theatre with smiles on their faces and desire to “see them again.” Little Hip is undoubtedly one of the cleverist monkies in the world – one of a very few. What he does is a subject of enthusiastic discussion at every show, and the horn played by his elephant companion, Napoleon are no less marvelous. Those who like quartet singing and there are few who do not are delighted with the Texas Comedy Four, who present of the most pleasing harmony acts in vaudeville. The comedy sketch of the week, “Business is Business,” is screamingly funny, and there are three other acts, providing a variety of interesting features.

Bob Hall calls himself the extemporaneous chap. He is vocally extemporaneous. Hall appears on the stage – asks anyone in the audience to select a tune and then to this tune he can apparently go on like the brook of Tennyson’s making up verse after verse about anyone to anything. The sunburn haired girl in the next to the last row may provide a new lyric for “Over There” or the elderly portly gentleman in the baldheaded row becomes a subject of a new verse of “We Won’t Come Home Until Morning.” or “I’m Afraid to Come Home in the Dark.” Hall’s epidemic is followed by another, this laughter and good humor. He invariably has his house with him, and no one seems to enjoy his jests as much as the butt of them.

Dominion – The director of the Dominion orchestra, which plays “quality music” in this house of quality is in the height of his glory this week. He is playing Christmas music for a Christmas feature “A Virtuous Vamp.” starring Constance Talmadge. Isadore Lavit, the director, has picked out a splend’d programme for the holiday season, always keeping well in mind the film he is playing to. Light airy, frothy music mingles harmoniously with those glorious old-time Christmas airs in a harmonic way. There is something about the Dominion’s feature picture this week that fits with the Christmas spirit. At all times throught this six-reel photoplay the p’quant face of the one of the best comediennes radiates with the joy of living. Christmas afternoon or evening at the Dominion will be ideal Christmas Entertainment.

Constance Talmadge

Strand – Patrons of the Strand theatre who have already seen the vaudeville bill being presented this week, will vote the Peacock Revue, which headlines the bill, as being a splendid dancing feature. It is not, however, as extra ordinary as it would have been had not one of the premier dancers of the Revue met with a painful accident at International Falls last week, which has precluded the possibility of her appearing in her solo dance – a Spanish fandango. With considerable grit and courage, Miss Meta Hay – that’s the name of the little lady – is appearing in the ensemble numbers, with a sprained knee. The Peacock Revue is one of the classiest turns seen at the Strand thus far this season. The music is being directed by a musician who travels with the company, Dale Booker by name. The bills, both vaudeville and motion pictures, change in the entirety for Christmas Day.

Here’s a few other things of interest for Dec 25, 1919.

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