MACQUEEN-POPE

[ Ralph Reader's 'theatrical Pageant' 'Wings' (written by John Pudney), sponsored by the Air Council (Air Ministry, R.A.F. Theatre Pageant Unit). ] Material including correspondence, press releases, programmes, from papers of W. J. Macqueen-Pope.

Author: 
R.A.F. Theatre Pageant Unit; Royal Air Force; Air Ministry, London; John Pudney (1909-77), author; Ralph Reader (1903-82), theatrical impressario; W. J. Macqueen-Pope (1888-1960), theatre historian ]
Publication details: 
All items from 1947. From various locations in England, including the following in London: The Air Ministry, Adastral House. W. J. Macqueen-Pope, 359 Strand. Ralph Reader Limited, Astoria House, Shaftesbury Avenue, London.
£1,500.00

It seems curious that so little information should have survived regarding this 'mammoth show', one of Ralph Reader's 'gigantic pageants', 'sponsored by the Air Council' in the immediate aftermath of the Second World War, performed at the Royal Albert Hall and in the provinces, and in which Tony Hancock played an early and prominent part (in four roles, see Item Nine below).

[ The Argyle Theatre, Birkenhead, Victorian music hall. ] Typed Letter Signed ('Tom') from licensee and manager T. D. Clarke to theatre historian W. Macqueen-Pope, discussing productions for children.

Author: 
T. D. Clarke [ Tom Clarke ], Licensee and Manager, The Argyle Theatre, Birkenhead [ the Wirral; Merseyside; music hall; W. Macqueen-Pope [ Walter James Macqueen-Pope ] (1888-1960), theatre historian ]
Publication details: 
On illustrated letterhead of the Argyle Theatre, Birkenhead. 28 July 1945.
£45.00

The Clarke family ran the Argyle for fifty years from 1890 to 1940, during which period it was one of the best-known provincial theatres. It opened as the Argyle Music Hall in 1868, and between 1876 and 1890 was named the Prince Of Wales Theatre, being used mainly to stage plays. In 1890 the focus returned to music hall and variety and it was renamed the Argyle Theatre. Its archives are in the University of Sheffield. 2pp., 12mo. In fair condition, on lightly-aged paper, somehwhat grubby and creased at foot of leaf.

[ Michael Martin Harvey, actor. ] Autograph Letter Signed ('Michael M. H.') to theatre historian W. Macqueen-Pope ('Dearest Popie'), accompanying a typescript of his unpublished play 'Trust Chapeau'.

Author: 
Michael Martin Harvey (1897-1975), British actor, son of Sir John Martin-Harvey (1863-1944) [ W. Macqueen-Pope [ Walter James Macqueen-Pope ] (1888-1960), theatre manager and historian ]
Publication details: 
Both letter and typescript from Rowstock Cottage, Rowstock, Didcot, Berkshire. Both undated.
£280.00

ONE: Letter. 1p., 8vo. In fair condition, on aged paper. Smudged signature. He is sending the play, which he thinks has 'originality and charm and would be very funny. Who could play "Chapeau"? - I could, but I expect I'm too old!!!!' TWO: Typescript of play. 91pp., 4to. With autograph emendations. In good condition, on aged paper, in worn card covers.

[ W. Macqueen-Pope, theatre historian. ] Typescript of '"Train 68". A Play in One Act by James Macqueen. (W. Macqueen Pope)'.

Author: 
[ W. Macqueen-Pope [ Walter James Macqueen-Pope ] (1888-1960), theatre manager and historian ]
Publication details: 
'The property of W. Macqueen Pope. | 33, Etheldene Avenue. | Muswell Hill. | N.'
£180.00

[1] + 15pp., 4to. In good condition, lightly aged. Nicely presented, attached by brass studs in grey covers, with paper labels on front. Unpublished. 'Who's Who in the Theatre' records this title among 4 plays by Macqueen-Pope.

[ Murder mystery concerning crime writers in 1950s London. ] Two typewritten drafts of the play '"Death in Act IV" by Basil Francis', accompanied by Typed Letter Signed from the author to theatre historian W. Macqueen-Pope.

Author: 
Basil Francis [ W. Macqueen-Pope [ Walter James Macqueen-Pope ] (1888-1960), theatre manager and historian ]
Publication details: 
Letter on Francis's letterhead of 115 Kenilworth Court, S.W.15. 14 November 1950. Both typescript with same address; neither dated.
£320.00

ONE: Letter. 1p., landscape 12mo. Aged and creased. Addressed to 'My dear Popie'. He is sending the revised version of the play, 'which has been tightened up considerably from the earlier draft', asking whether it has 'commercial possibilities', or 'stinks'. He feels that five minutes with Pope gives him 'more practical dope on the theatre than 5 years at the RADA!' TWO: Early typescript of 'Death in Act IV'. The letter ends with a reference to 'Fanny K', Francis's 1950 biography 'Fanny Kelly of Drury Lane'. 68pp., 8vo. In fair condition, on aged and worn paper.

[ J. B. Platnauer. ] Typed Letter Signed ('Plat') to theatre historian W. Macqueen-Pope ('Popey'), accompanying a typescript of his unpublished pseudonymous play 'David and Jonathan'.

Author: 
'Dick M. Adelar' (pseudonym of J. B. Platnauer) [ W. Macqueen-Pope [ Walter James Macqueen-Pope ] (1888-1960), theatre manager and historian ]
Publication details: 
Letter from the Ministry of Works Press Office, on government letterhead of Lambeth Bridge House, London. 7 May 1946. Typescript undated, to be returned to Platnauer at 43 Arlington Lodge, Baytree Rd, London SW2.
£220.00

ONE: Letter: 1p., 12mo. In good condition. Pope's 'stimulating verve' over 'an excellent lunch', at which 'Stoll' (a member of the family of Sir Oswald Stoll) was present, emboldens Platnauer to hope that his play might be 'a commercial success, despite the admittedly rational principles upon which theatrical choice is based today? Tastes change - usually before the pundits are aware of it.

[ 'Allan Aynesworth' [ Edward Abbot-Anderson ], English actor. ] Five Autograph Letters Signed, one to Cyril Maude and rest to W. Macqueen-Pope, about a benefit performance for Maude at the Haymarket Theatre, and containing biographical information.

Author: 
Allan Aynesworth [ born Edward Abbot-Anderson ] (1864-1959), English actor whose career spanned six decades [ Cyril Maude; W. Macqueen-Pope ]
Publication details: 
Both from Larkwood, off Chobham Road, Camberley, Surrey. Letter to Maude dated 14 February 1942; letter to MacQueen-Pope dated 9 April 1942.
£180.00

BThe five items in fair condition, lightly-aged, with slight rust staining from paperclip. In a difficult hand. ONE: ALS to Macqueen-Pope, 20 March 1941. On his Larkwood letterhead, with 'From Allan Aynesworth' at head. Undated. 3pp., landscape 12mo. Providing a deal of information about his association with Maude, the last page beginning: 'Friendship about 50 years. We joined the Garrick & Beefsteak Clubs where we dined together with so many of our Theatre Friends Inc. Wyndham Irving Alexander Hare & Kendal to name a few.

[ Jonathan Routh, television presenter. ] Typed Letter Signed, as showbusiness editor of 'Everybody's', to theatre historian W. Macqueen Pope, regarding his relation Lily Brayton and 'Chu Chin Chow'.

Author: 
Jonathan Routh (1927-2008), television presenter who brought 'Candid Camera' to Britain [ W. Macqueen-Pope (1888-1960), theatre historian; Lily Brayton (1876-1963), actress and singer ]
Publication details: 
On 'Everybody's' letterhead, 114 Fleet Street, London. 20 December [ no year ].
£45.00

1p., 8vo. On aged and creased paper. Lily Braytonis is a 'vague relative' of his, and she sends her 'good wishes [...] a propos the Chu Chin Chow article'. She would like to 'read through the relevant proofs' and Routh sends on her address. Brayton appeared in more than 2000 performances of 'Chu Chin Chow'. For more on Routh, see his obituary in the Independent, 8 June 2008.

[ Paschoal Carlos Magno, Brazilian playwright. ] Typescript of his play 'This is Glory', with Typed Letter Signed from his agent Mrs T. C. Dagnall.

Author: 
Paschoal Carlos Magno (1906-1980), Brazilian author [ Evelyn Dagnall [ Mrs T. C. Dagnall ], English dramatic agent; Walter James Macqueen-Pope (1888-1960), theatre manager and historian ]
Publication details: 
The play without place or date. Evelyn Dagnall's letter on her letterhead as 'Mrs. T. C. Dagnall | Dramatic Agent | in association with | A. M. Heath & Company Ltd.', London. 13 May 1946.
£120.00

Both items in good condition, on lightly-aged paper. ONE: Typed playscript. 85pp., 4to. Typed in black and red on rectos only. Typed by May Hemery of London. Bound into black card covers, with label on front. TWO: Typed Note Signed to theatre historian W. J. Macqueen-Pope from 'Evelyn Dagnall', i.e. the dramatic critic Mrs T. C. Dagnall.

[ Edward Fitzball, English playwright. ] Autograph Letter Signed ('E. Fitzball.') [ to Charles Kean ], requesting a box for a performance of King Lear [ at the Princess's Theatre ].

Author: 
Edward Fitzball (1792-1873), English playwright [ Charles Kean (1811-1868), English actor, born in Ireland; Walter James Macqueen-Pope (1888-1960), theatre manager and historian ]
Publication details: 
9 Upper Fitzroy Street, Fitzroy Square [ London ]. 18 May 1858.
£45.00

1p., 16mo. In fair condition, on aged paper, laid down on damaged leaf from album. At head, in another hand: 'for Saturday'. Reads: 'My dear Sir: | I shd. feel greatly obliged if you could without inconvenience to yr interest, give me a box, any night this week, to see King Lear.' At head is note in another hand (see below): 'for Saturday'. From the collection of Macqueen-Pope, who has written at the foot of the leaf on which the letter is mounted: 'To Chas Kean Princess's Theatre | Note at top, either by CK or Massingham the boxoffice m[ana]g[e]r.'

[ The Gaiety Theatre, Aldwych, London. ] Two Autograph Letters Signed from H. Hugh Harvey to theatre historian W. J. Macqueen-Pope, reminiscing about 'theatrical matters' andn in particular the Gaiety Theatre.

Author: 
H. Hugh Harvey, English musicologist and broadcaster [ The Gaiety Theatre, Aldwych, London; Walter James Macqueen-Pope (1888-1960), theatre manager and historian ]
Publication details: 
Both on his letterhead, 24 Wessex Gardens, Golder Green, NW11 [ London ]. 12 and 16 January 1950.
£100.00

Both in good condition, on aged paper. ONE: 2pp., 4to. He reminds Macqueen-Pope that two years previously he was 'kind enough to receive me at your Office and, after a long and most interesting chat on things theatrical (over an hour, as I recall!) you wrote into my copies of your "Drury Lane" and "Carriages at Eleven" two very greatly appreciated inscriptions, by way of friendship'. He now has his 'delightful "Gaiety" and splendid 'Haymarket", and asks for 'another pow-wow' at 359 Strand.

[ C. B. Cochran, theatre impressario. ] Typed Letter Signed ('Chas B. Cochran') to 'dear Popey' [ theatre historian Macqueen-Pope ]

Author: 
C. B. Cochran [ Sir Charles Blake Cochran ] (1872-1951), English theatre impressario [ Walter James Macqueen-Pope (1888-1960), theatre historian; Edward John Henley (1864-1921), actor ]
Publication details: 
On his Old Bond Street letterhead. 30 November 1949.
£56.00

1p., 8vo. In fair condition, lightly aged. He begins by thanking Macqueen-Pope for a 'kindly reference' to him in his 'admirable book about The Gaiety'. He has noted a reference to 'Henly' in the index, and identifies this figure as Edward John Henley, brother of William Ernest Henley, whose poem 'Ballade of Dead Actors' he transcribes. He explains that Henley stayed some time in America after going there with a production of 'Deacon Brodie', a play by his brother and R. L. Stevenson, 'and, in 1897, I made my first production, "John Gabriel Borkman," in New York, with E. J.

[ Blanche Robey, wife of music hall comedian Sir George Robey. ] Autograph Letter Signed ('Blanche Robey') to 'Dear Popie' [i.e. theatre historian W. Macqueen-Pope]

Author: 
Blanche Robey [ née Littler ] (b. 1899), wife of music hall comedian Sir George Robey [ born George Edward Wade ] (1869-1954) [ Walter James Macqueen-Pope (1888-1960), theatre manager and historian ]
Publication details: 
On letterhead of 'The Lawns', Arundel Road East [amended in autograph to Arundel Drive], Saltdean Essex. 26 August [no year, but between 1948 and 1954].
£56.00

2pp., 4to. In fair condition, lightly aged and creased. After beginning 'Dear Popie / | How are you?' she asks what the 'immediate prospects' are for her to 'get a book and a series in the paper running', as she has 'scanned a tremendous amount of George's material' since moving to 'The Lawns'. In a postscript she describes the material as a 'wonderful story for T.V. too to say nothing about the films!', adding that she has 'got G. to record a lot of his old & recent material ready!' Macqueen-Pope was an admirer of Robey's, as his 'The Melodies Linger On: The Story of Music Hall' makes clear.

[ Paul Bugeja, Maltese author. ] Typescript of a play: 'Honour Her Brave People. A Tragedy in 3 acts about conditions in MALTA G.C. as they are and as they might be'. With covering Typed Letter Signed to the theatre historian W. Macqueen-Pope.

Author: 
Paul Bugeja, Maltese author [ Malta; W. Macqueen-Pope [ Walter James Macqueen-Pope ] (1888-1960), theatre historian ]
Publication details: 
Play from 13 Caledonia Mansions, Qui S Sana, Sliema, Malta G.C. Undated [ containing reference to 1942 ]. Bugeja's covering letter from same address, 30 June 1952.
£650.00

ONE: Typescript. [3] + 94pp., 4to. Stapled in green tyed wraps. In good condition, on lightly-aged paper; in aged and worn wraps. Stage directions underlined in red pencil, and a handful of minor manuscript changes. 'The action of this play takes place in Malta G.C.

[ Walter James Macqueen-Pope, theatre historian. ] Two Typed Drafts of article: 'It Was Top of the Bill | The Story of Music Hall.' One draft with autograph emendations. With copy of covering letter to Greville Poke, editor of 'Everybody's' magazine.

Author: 
W. Macqueen-Pope [ Walter James Macqueen-Pope ] (1888-1960), theatre historian
Publication details: 
Drafts without place or date. Covering letter to Poke dated 20 January 1951 [ without place ].
£450.00

ONE: The earlier of the two drafts, titled 'It Was Top of the Bill | The Story of Music Hall. | by | W. Macqueen-Pope.' 14pp., 4to. Paginated 1-12, with two further pages carrying material to be inserted. With a few autograph emendations, including an addition to the ending. Macqueen-Pope writes knowledgeably and with a passion for his theme, which is that 'Music Hall reflected public taste even more accurately than did the "legitimate" Theatre because it was created by the people themselves. The basis of the Drama of the Theatre - was religion.

[ Naomi Jacob, author and actress. ] Two Typed Letters Signed (both 'Mickie') to W. Macqueen-Pope, on subjects including Ellen Terry, Bernard Shaw and Teddy Knox of the Crazy Gang's 'Nervo and Knox'.

Author: 
Naomi Jacob (1884-1964), English author and actress [ Walter James Macqueen-Pope (1888-1960), authority on theatre; Teddy Knox of the Crazy Gang's 'Nervo and Knox'; Clarice Mayne, music hall star ]
Publication details: 
Both from 'Casa Mickie [ the second spelled 'Casa Micki' ], Gardone Riviera, Lago di Garda, Italy. 16 July [ 1953 ] and 5 August 1953.
£150.00

Two chatty and characteristic letters. ONE: 15 July [1953]. 2pp., 4to. On aged paper, with wear to edges and vertical closed tear at foot. She begins by praising his books 'Ladies First' (1952) and 'Shirtfronts and Sables' (1953), adding in an autograph note 'Yes I bought them when in London.' The first contains 'that wonderfully beautiful tribute to Ellen Terry. I don't know when I have read anything which moved me so deeply, you rose to great heights when you wrote that. You are beginning to run James Agate very close on my shelves'.

[ Phyllis Hartnoll, theatre historian. ] Correspondence with her agent W. T. Macqueen-Pope, impressario Jack Hylton and actress Freda Jackson regarding her translation of 'The Lady of the Camellias', together with two versions of the translation.

Author: 
Phyllis Hartnoll (1906-1997), theatre historian [ Jack Hylton (1892-1965), impressario; Freda Jackson (1907-1990), actress; W. Macqueen-Pope ]
Publication details: 
Correspondence dating from 1948, except for single items from 1947 and 1950. Hartnoll's letters either from Hobbits, Nether Westcote, Kingham, Oxon, or on Oxford University Press letterheads. Other correspondence from various London addresses.
£950.00

An interesting collection, giving an insight into theatre practices in post-war Britain. Hartnoll is commissioned by the actress Freda Jackson, then at the height of her popularity, to produce an adaptation of the play, Jackson gets impressario Jack Hylton and producer Anthony Hawtrey on board, and there is the inevitable falling out between the actress and the author, with Macqueen-Pope, who is acting as Hartnoll's agent, playing the mediator, as matters become acrimonious.

[ W. J. Macqueen-Pope, theatre manager and historian. ] Typescript of an unpublished account of the work of British millers and bakers during the war: 'No Medals for This (The Story of Bread in the Blitz)'. With two related Typed Letters Signed

Author: 
W. Macqueen-Pope [ Walter James Macqueen-Pope ] (1888-1960), theatre manager and historian [ Sydney Walton, publicist ]
Publication details: 
[ London, 1941. ]
£450.00

148pp., 4to. Bound with pink ribbon into grey card wraps with typed label on cover. In fair condition, on aged paper, in worn and aged binding. Pencil note on title page states '40000 words'. An interesting piece of social history during wartime. In a foreword Macqueen-Pope thanks a number of individuals for their assistance, adding that 'the leading characters in this real life story must perforce remain anonymous'.

[ Joe Corrie, Scottish miner and playwright. ] Corrected typescript of the 'English Version' of his play 'A Master of Men', with Typed Letter Signed to the theatre manager W. J. Macqueen-Pope.

Author: 
Joe Corrie [ Joseph Corrie ] (1894-1968), Scottish miner and playwright [ W. Macqueen-Pope [ Walter James Macqueen-Pope ] (1888-1960), theatre manager and theatre historian ]
Publication details: 
Hill's Hotel, 41 Princes Square, London W2. Undated. [ Performed at the Glasgow Citizens' Theatre, Scotland, circa 1944. ]
£600.00

For more about Corrie see his entry in the Oxford DNB, which states that 'His most effective mature work, A Master of Men, about the conflict between a mine manager, the mine owners, and the miners, was performed by the Glasgow Citizens' Theatre in 1944.' 111pp., 4to. On paper of various colours. Autograph title-page: 'English Version | A Master of Men | A Play | Joe Corrie | Hill's Hotel | 41 Princes Sq. | London W2 | Tel. Bay. 0118'. (Many of Corrie's plays were written in Lowland Scots.) In good condition, lightly-aged, in worn buff card wraps. With a few autograph emendations.

[W. Macqueen-Pope, theatre manager and historian.] Typed Letter Signed 'W. Macqueen-Pope') to 'Mr O'Donnell' [the ghost hunter Elliott O'Donnell], regarding 'the Ghost' at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, and the possibility of a 'night vigil' there.

Author: 
W. Macqueen-Pope [Walter James Macqueen-Pope] (1888-1960), theatre manager and historian [Elliott O'Donnell (1872-1965), Irish ghost hunter]
Publication details: 
On his letterhead, 5-6 Coventry Street, W1. [London] 6 December 1951.
£56.00

1p., landscape 12mo. In fair condition, on lightly aged and worn paper, with cropped margins. He begins by explaining that O'Donnell's letter has been sent to him 'from Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, on the staff of which I am and whose whose [sic] historian I am too'. He continues: 'I fear a night vigil would be of little use so far as the Ghost is concerned. He is a day time visitant. Never yet has he been seen before 9 a.m. or after six p.m. Between those hours - frequently.' He refers O'Donnell to the 'full account' in his book 'Theatre Royal'.

[Hannen Swaffer and Walter Macqueen-Pope.] Collection relating to an abortive collaborative attempt at a 'biography' of Swaffer for Odhams Press, with drafts of chapters (with anecdotes on Churchill, H. G. Wells, Lloyd George) and original letters.

Author: 
Hannen Swaffer (1879-1962), doyen of English journalists, known as 'The Pope of Fleet Street'; Walter Macqueen-Pope (1888-1960), theatre manager and historian [Odhams Press; Maurice Barbanell]
Publication details: 
[London: 1955.]
£1,650.00

In very good condition, on aged paper, in a brown card folder. The material in this collection relates to a book that was never published, and included here are copies of two typed letters from WMP to HS, casting light on the nature of this doomed collaborative project. In WMP's first letter, dated 26 July 1955, he writes to 'Dear Swaff' to 'finalise the manner in which your book is to be written'. Presaging future problems he urges him: 'I do entreat you to remember the fact that a book is different to a series of paragraphs. It must have cohesion.

Typed Letter Signed ('Compton Mackenzie') from the Anglo-Scottish author Sir Compton Mackenzie to the theatre historian W. J. MacQueen-Pope, discussing famous London actors and pantomimes of the 1890s, with a carbon copy of the typed reply.

Author: 
Sir Compton Mackenzie [Sir Edward Montague Compton Mackenzie] (1883-1972) [W. J. MacQueen-Pope [Walter James MacQueen-Pope] (1888-1960)]
Publication details: 
Mackenzie's letter on letterhead of Denchworth Manor, by Wantage, Berkshire. 1 January 1951. Copy of MacQueen-Pope's reply dated 5 January 1951, with place not stated.
£120.00

Mackenzie's letter is 1p., landscape 12mo. 16 lines. Good, on lightly-aged paper, with a crease to one corner. He thanks MP for his 'encouraging letter' and discusses his own 'silly slip about the Faery Queen's entrance' in a radio broadcast: 'I was so much concerned with giving listeners the difference between the O.P. and the Prompt side that it became a question of physician heal thyself.' He continues: 'I wasn't sure of the year Mille Le Garde [sic] sang that song. Probably '97. Rose Dering was the Aladdin. She was second boy. Ted Young was the Widow Twankey.

Typed Letter Signed ('Hugh') from Hugh Cudlipp, as Managing Editor of the Sunday Express, to 'My dear Popie', the theatre critic W. Macqueen-Pope.

Author: 
Hugh Cudlipp [Hubert Kinsman Cudlipp] (1913-1998), editor of the Daily Mirror, 1952-1973 [Walter James Macqueen-Pope (1888-1960), theatre manager and historian]
Typed Letter Signed ('Hugh') from Hugh Cudlipp
Publication details: 
2 January 1952; on Fleet Street letterhead of the Sunday Express.
£38.00
Typed Letter Signed ('Hugh') from Hugh Cudlipp

12mo, 1 p. Good, on lightly-aged paper. He had meant to write to him 'at the end of the series' (of articles by Macqueen-Pope?): 'We took a great deal of trouble in putting the series over well, and I am glad you liked the results.' The 'nonsense at the beginning' was caused by 'a series of misunderstandings'. Ends: 'No doubt we will knock into each other shortly.'

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