The Golden Age of Pantomime: Slapstick, Spectacle and Subversion in Victorian England

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9781780762937: The Golden Age of Pantomime: Slapstick, Spectacle and Subversion in Victorian England

Queen Victoria and her family loved the pantomime, so did her subjects of all classes.
The English Pantomime is one of the most popular, least analysed of all theatrical forms. It's been the festive mainstay of the English stage since the eighteenth century, and it has survived by its ability to evolve. This continual evolution is traced by Jeffrey Richards in the first history of panto through its 'Golden Age' in Victorian England. He explores the spectacle, the slapstick, and the talent for subversion that nineteenth-century pantomime had – and still has in different ways. His story, told with panache and enjoyment, is peopled with remarkable actors, managers, producers and punters , across the country from Drury Lane to Blackpool. This is a treat as rich as turkey and Christmas pudding.

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About the Author:

Jeffrey Richards is Professor of Cultural History, Lancaster University, UK. His many publications on theatre history include Sir Henry Irving: A Victorian Actor and His World and John Ruskin and the Victorian Theatre. He is General Editor of Tauris' Cinema and Society Series.

Review:

'I rejoice at Jeffrey Richards' achievement: the first thorough and gratifyingly detailed study of London's pantomimes from the 1830s through to c.1900 which quietly blends immaculate scholarship, close analysis and archival work with entertaining readability. So doing, he has produced a work entirely free from whimsy, mawkish nostalgia and enforced rapture that so disfigure earlier attempts to describe this major English theatrical genre.' David Mayer, Emeritus Professor of Drama, Manchester University. 'An insightful and passionate study of the pantomime written by one of Britain's leading cultural historians. Jeffrey Richards is able to bring the Victorian panto back to life, show its vibrancy and popularity, and the extraordinary detail with which it was discussed in the print media. Richards almost made me want to go back in time to witness these spectacles firsthand.' Anselm Heinrich, Head of Theatre Studies, University of Glasgow

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Book Description I.B.Tauris Co Ltd., United Kingdom, 2014. Hardback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Of all the theatrical genres most prized by the Victorians, pantomime is the only one to have survived continuously into the twenty-first century. It remains as true today as it was in the 1830s, that a visit to the pantomime constitutes the first theatrical experience of most children and now, as then, a successful pantomime season is the key to the financial health of most theatres. Everyone went to the pantomime, from Queen Victoria and the royal family to the humblest of her subjects. It appealed equally to West End and East End, to London and the provinces, to both sexes and all ages. Many Victorian luminaries were devotees of the pantomime, notably among them John Ruskin, Charles Dickens, Lewis Carroll and W.E. Gladstone. In this vivid and evocative account of the Victorian pantomime, Jeffrey Richards examines the potent combination of slapstick, spectacle and subversion that ensured the enduring popularity of the form. The secret of its success, he argues, was its continual evolution. It acted as an accurate cultural barometer of its times, directly reflecting current attitudes, beliefs and preoccupations, and it kept up a flow of instantly recognisable topical allusions to political rows, fashion fads, technological triumphs, wars and revolutions, and society scandals. Richards assesses throughout the contribution of writers, producers, designers and stars to the success of the pantomime in its golden age. This book is a treat as rich and appetizing as turkey, mince pies and plum pudding. Bookseller Inventory # AAZ9781780762937

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Book Description I.B.Tauris Co Ltd., United Kingdom, 2014. Hardback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Of all the theatrical genres most prized by the Victorians, pantomime is the only one to have survived continuously into the twenty-first century. It remains as true today as it was in the 1830s, that a visit to the pantomime constitutes the first theatrical experience of most children and now, as then, a successful pantomime season is the key to the financial health of most theatres. Everyone went to the pantomime, from Queen Victoria and the royal family to the humblest of her subjects. It appealed equally to West End and East End, to London and the provinces, to both sexes and all ages. Many Victorian luminaries were devotees of the pantomime, notably among them John Ruskin, Charles Dickens, Lewis Carroll and W.E. Gladstone. In this vivid and evocative account of the Victorian pantomime, Jeffrey Richards examines the potent combination of slapstick, spectacle and subversion that ensured the enduring popularity of the form. The secret of its success, he argues, was its continual evolution. It acted as an accurate cultural barometer of its times, directly reflecting current attitudes, beliefs and preoccupations, and it kept up a flow of instantly recognisable topical allusions to political rows, fashion fads, technological triumphs, wars and revolutions, and society scandals. Richards assesses throughout the contribution of writers, producers, designers and stars to the success of the pantomime in its golden age. This book is a treat as rich and appetizing as turkey, mince pies and plum pudding. Bookseller Inventory # AAZ9781780762937

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Book Description I.B.Tauris & Co Ltd. Book Condition: New. The English Pantomime is one of the most popular, least analysed of all theatrical forms. It's been the festive mainstay of the English stage since the eighteenth century, and it has survived by its ability to evolve. Num Pages: 304 pages, 16 bw integrated. BIC Classification: 1DBKE; 3JH; AN; ASZ. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 233 x 159 x 39. Weight in Grams: 796. . 2014. Hardcover. . . . . Books ship from the US and Ireland. Bookseller Inventory # V9781780762937

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Book Description I.B.Tauris & Co Ltd, 2014. Book Condition: New. The English Pantomime is one of the most popular, least analysed of all theatrical forms. It's been the festive mainstay of the English stage since the eighteenth century, and it has survived by its ability to evolve. Num Pages: 304 pages, 16 bw integrated. BIC Classification: 1DBKE; 3JH; AN; ASZ. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 233 x 159 x 39. Weight in Grams: 796. . 2014. Hardcover. . . . . . Bookseller Inventory # V9781780762937

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Book Description I.B.Tauris & Co Ltd. Hardback. Book Condition: new. BRAND NEW, The Golden Age of Pantomime: Slapstick, Spectacle and Subversion in Victorian England, Jeffrey Richards, Of all the theatrical genres most prized by the Victorians, pantomime is the only one to have survived continuously into the twenty-first century. It remains as true today as it was in the 1830s, that a visit to the pantomime constitutes the first theatrical experience of most children and now, as then, a successful pantomime season is the key to the financial health of most theatres. Everyone went to the pantomime, from Queen Victoria and the royal family to the humblest of her subjects. It appealed equally to West End and East End, to London and the provinces, to both sexes and all ages. Many Victorian luminaries were devotees of the pantomime, notably among them John Ruskin, Charles Dickens, Lewis Carroll and W.E. Gladstone. In this vivid and evocative account of the Victorian pantomime, Jeffrey Richards examines the potent combination of slapstick, spectacle and subversion that ensured the enduring popularity of the form. The secret of its success, he argues, was its continual evolution. It acted as an accurate cultural barometer of its times, directly reflecting current attitudes, beliefs and preoccupations, and it kept up a flow of instantly recognisable topical allusions to political rows, fashion fads, technological triumphs, wars and revolutions, and society scandals. Richards assesses throughout the contribution of writers, producers, designers and stars to the success of the pantomime in its golden age. This book is a treat as rich and appetizing as turkey, mince pies and plum pudding. Bookseller Inventory # B9781780762937

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