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Poster advertising a festival in aid of the Music Hall Sick Fund Provident Society at the Royal Music Hall

Poster advertising a festival in aid of the Music Hall Sick Fund Provident Society at the Royal Music Hall

Printer: G. Tarrant & Co.

Medium: Lithograph

Date: 1880/09/04

Shelfmark: Evan.967

Item number: 967

Genre: Poster

The Royal Music Hall, or Weston's Music Hall as it was originally called, was opened on 16 November 1857 by Charles Weston, who transformed the former Holborn National Schoolrooms into a music hall theatre. Renamed the Royal Music Hall in 1868 and the Royal Holborn Theatre of Varieties in 1892, it proved to be a consistently popular venue and became the first serious rival to Charles Morton's Canterbury Theatre.

Artistes performing at the Royal Music Hall on this particular September afternoon in 1880 hoped to raise funds for the Music Hall Provident Society Sick Fund and would not have received payment for their services. Benefit performances would often be held two or three times a week, so it was usually only the well established and most successful artistes - such as G H Macdermott (1845-1901) and Bessie Bonehill (1855-1902) appearing here - who could regularly afford to perform at these shows.

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