Friday, November 12, 2010

Grab Bag Friday: Vaudeville!

For the new book I'm working on, I get to do some research on the American vaudeville circuit. That means I get to read fun books like Trav S D's No Applause, Just Throw Money: The Book That Made Vaudeville Famous, a history of vaudeville that is relevant, packed with information, and entertaining all at the same time. It's amazing to me how many of our current corporations (Loews Theaters, for instance) and entertainment systems (agents, circuit touring) developed back in the 1800's and in some ways really haven't changed much since then!

Earlier this week, my friend Hannah sent me a link to the University of Virginia's vaudeville website (courtesy of the American Studies program), which is a treasure trove of fascinating information. What I especially love, though, is the movie page. You can play through a number of silent clips and even without sound you can get a feel for that ever-changing vaudeville stage.

I like this strange Frontier Flirtation especially. What an interesting tactic for fighting off pesky suitors!

And of course, who wouldn't pay to see a monkey playing a violin? I like how the horse gets revenge in the end.

Or two dude smacking each other with bags of soot and flour?

I hope you're enjoying this as much as I am! Oh, how I love book research!

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