# 28314


Alhambra, Bradford … Week commencing Monday, May 24th … Albert Whelan, The Australian … Trixie, The Little Australian Venus … …

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Bradford [UK] : Alhambra Theatre, [1926]. Large format variety bill poster, 880 x 270 mm, lithograph printed in red and blue on white paper; with vignette portraits of three of the performers including the dapper Australian comedian Albert Whelan (the headline act), Tom D. Newell (comedian in drag) and Ernest Hastings (musical comedian); also advertised is the utterly obscure but intriguingly named Trixie, The Little Australian Venus; verso with address label with a postmark date of 1926, addressed by the Alhambra’s manager to the manager of the Empire Theatre, Nottingham (presumably the next venue on the northern England circuit); old horizontal folds, but in fine condition.

Melbourne-born Albert Whelan (1875-1961) honed his comedic skills by performing to miners on the Western Australian goldfields before heading to London, where he was one of a handful of Australians (along with others like Florrie Forde and Billy Williams) to make a very successful career in British Music Hall.

Whelan was still performing up into the 1940s, and there is a good deal of surviving footage of him delivering a variety of his routines. His humour is, of course, of a different time and sensibility and not to everyone’s taste, but you can judge for yourself by watching this clip from 1930, courtesy of British Pathé.