Donna Darling Collection – Part 60 – Parkway Theatre

Donna Montran – Vaudeville
Treasure Chest Thursday
By Don Taylor

Photo of Don Taylor with cat Nasi.For this week’s Treasure Chest Tuesday, I’m looking at eight images all relating to the Parkway Theatre. None of the clippings indicate what city the show is taking place in and none of the clippings provide a date. Donna’s 1924-1925 show went by many different names, Hollywood Bathing Beauties,” “California Bathing Beauties Revue,” and “Bathing Beauties Revue featuring Donna Darling. A film mentioned, “The Painted Flapper,” was released in October 1924, so Donna’s show most likely within the three months after the film’s release.

From other research, I knew that Donna played at the Parkway Theatre in Madison, Wisconsin from January 11 to the 15th. Could this be the Parkway Theatre of Donna’s Scrapbook?

A quick review said, yes, these clippings came from that show. Many of the clippings were identical to articles I found online so, I feel comfortable these clipping for the Parkway are from Donna’s Madison Show.

PARKWAY

Clipping from the Donna Darling Collection.
Clipping from newspapers.com

THE CALIFORNIA BATHING BEAUTIES REVUE

Direct from the Studios at Hollywood
In Person
featuring

DONNA DARLING
Creator of principal role in “Chin Chin” star of “Girl Behind the Gun;” winner of Madison Square beauty contest.
MR. MURRY EARLE Late feature dancer for George White Scandals
ALL ROSS & ALICE LOUISE Dances and Comedians
MISS BETTY BRYANT – Know for her comedy team work.
MISS MILDRED O’BRIEN – In Mack Sennett Comedies
MISS CLARICE ALLYN – Toe Dancer
MISS KATHERYN KOLLEEN – Dancer
MISS MYRTLE CARLSON – Dancer


PARKWAY
Same info as the previous ad, plus additional info about the accompanying motion picture, “The Painted Flapper: An Ultra Modern Jazzology” starring James Kirkwood and Pauline Garon.

(Note: Donna cut off the ads for coming attractions. )


Parkway

Clipping from the Donna Darling Collection.

The much heralded Bathing Girl Revue headed by Miss Donna Darling and her motion picture studio girls made it bow to Parkway Patrons yesterday and won applause. Their offering is fast, clean and colorful and thoroughly devoid of anything that smacks of the sensational often associated with the miniature revues.

Identical article in the Wisconsin State Journal (Madison, WI) · 12 Jan 1925, Page 7.

The plot, though not a new one, is unique in development. In a short half hour one is whipped through a mirage of singing and dancing numbers following in quick succession, telling a history of the bathing suit from Grandmother’s day down to the present time, with a side trip around the world including stop offs at various beach resorts. The costumes are elaborate, the setting pleasing and the lighting effects unusual.

Of the cast Miss Darling stand out by right of her personality, beauty and grace. She was ably assisted by Murry Earl, a dancer of accomplishment. Miss Betty Bryant, for her demon dancing in the Mars episode and dainty Clarice Allyn’s Chinese bathing girl number deserve special mention.


BATHING BEAUTIES OF MOVIES IN REVUE AT PARKWAY

Bathing girls from various California motion picture studios will make a personal appearance in a colorful Hollywood Revue at the Parkway this week, beginning today. This review is a clever musical and dancing number which will show the Parkway patrons that these versatile girls can do other things than merely pose before the camera.

Miss Donna Darling, who comes direct from the Mack Sennett studios, is the charming star who introduces the Bathing Beauties dressed in bathing costumes dating from 1860 to the present day. Betty Bryant is the “Miss America of 1925.” Bathing costumes of various countries and fashionable sea-shore centers are introduced. Chief among these numbers is Mildred O’Brian, who appear as the beauty from Palm Beach. Miss Darling’s life guards, Murry Earl and Al Ross, add comedy to the Egyptian dance while petite Clarice Allyn as the Chinese bathing girl enhances the offering with clever toe dancing.

Elaborate costumes have been selected for this sparkling revue. The music is snappy and the production has brilliant scenic and lighting effects.


There was a large ad that ran across two pages in Donna’s scrapbook. It shows Donna on the left and two of the other girls. I have not identified either of them yet. I suspect one of them is probably Betty Bryant, but the other could be Mildred O’Brian or Clarice Allyn or even one of the other two girls. I’ll need to research that further.

Conclusion

The Donna Darling Collection provided new information about her show at the Parkway Theatre, Madison Wisconsin on January 11 to the 15th, 1925.

Follow-up Actions

I’ll need to search for photos of the other individuals of the show that are in the advertising.

Sources

Wisconsin State Journal (Madison, Wisconsin) · 12 Jan 1925 · Page 7.

Wisconsin State Journal (Madison, Wisconsin) · 14 Jan 1925 · Page 15.

Donna Darling Collection – Part 59

Donna Montran – Vaudeville
Treasure Chest Thursday
By Don Taylor

For this week’s Treasure Chest Tuesday, I’m looking at three clippings from the Donna Darling Collection, all relating to the State Theatre, Beacon, New York.

Article

STATE THEATRE.

D. W. Griffith’s “The Love Flower,” which opened at the State Theatre last night for three days, lives up to the Griffith standard. It was thoroughly enjoyed by all.

A rattling good vaudeville bill wins the appreciation of all.
….
Dolly Montran, the singing comedienne, with a million dollar personality, gives the patrons a treat in song offerings She more than pleases.

“The Girlie Review,” introducing….

Advertising

With the article was an advertisement for Beacon’s State Theatre. The show “Dolly Montrose” is number 6 on the bill. Also, my grandmother highlighted the item. Beneath that is another ad showing the motion picture “The Love Flower” and Dolly Montran, a Singing Comedienne. The prima donna with a million-dollar personality. My grandmother also highlighted that clipping.

Magazine

The last clipping was a short one:

Donna Montran played Bacon [sic], New York, last week, and is appearing at Red Bank, N. J., and Stroudsburg, PA., this week, breaking on her new single, “As You Like It,” written by Hockey and Green.

The good news is I had seen the short clip before. It ran in The New York Clipper, dated 6 July 1921, on – page 15, column 3. From other documents, I knew that Donna was “breaking in” the new single in 1921.

Key features:

  • The venue is the State Theatre. It is “Beacon’s Pride – Theatre Beautiful.”
  • The show is the “Dolly Montran” A singing comedienne. The prima donna with a million-dollar personality.
  • Also on the bill:
    • David Wark [D.W.] Griffith’s picture, “The Love Flower.”
    • “The Girlie Review” – Vaudeville’s greatest dancing novelty
    • Hall and Fenton – A corking skit
    • Robertio – Novelty contortionist

Analysis

Interestingly, the theatre program called her “Dolly Montrose,” and the theatre’s advertising called her Dolly Montran.  I have not seen her going by the name of “Dolly” before. I suspect that “Montrose” was a typo, but I should look at that closer.

July 3rd was a Sunday and playbills of the period typically ran Monday through Wednesday and Thursday through Sunday, so those shows were probably the dates for Red Bank, NJ, and the Stroudsburg, PA, shows.

Conclusion

I was able to update my previous schedule with the following:

  • June 30 – July 2, 1921 – Beacon, New York, State Theatre, “As You Like It” with Donna Montran.
  • July 4-6, 1921 – Red Bank, New Jersey, _____ Theatre, Donna Montran (probable)
  • July 7-9, 1921 – Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania, _____ Theatre, Donna Montran (probable)

Actions

Search for any other examples of “Dolly Montrose” or “Dolly Montran” during 1921.

Sources

Donna Darling Collection – SCAN0080 – Don Taylor’s Private Collection.

Donna Darling Collection – Part 58

Orpheum Theatre – (August?) 1925 – Donna Darling’s Revue

Treasure Chest Thursday
By Don Taylor

For this week’s Treasure Chest Thursday, I’m looking at a clipping from the Donna Darling Collection. I only found an ad and not an associated article.

display ad for Donna Darling's Review playing at the Orpheum TheatreOrpheum Theatre
Vaudeville Tonight | Friday | Saturday

Donna Darling’s Revue

See Dance of “Evolution” | The Charleston” | A Fast Colorful | Dancing Revue | Pretty Girls

PLENTY OF SINGING AND DANCING

Key features:

  • The venue is the Orpheum Theatre. There is no mention of date or location.
  • The show is “Donna Darling’s Revue.”
  • Also on bill
    • Meyers & Nolan – Comedy-Singing – The man with lots of avoirdupois
    • Tom Calloway – Comedian – In a Specialty Act | Full of Fun
    • Constance Talmadge in “Her Sister From Paris” on the Screen Tonight and Friday.

Analysis

The silent movie, “Her Sister from Paris” starring Constance Talmadge was released on August 2, 1925[i]. That fact is the only item that provides a potential date.

I searched at length[ii] for Donna playing at an Orpheum theater with Meyers & Nolan without success.

The known schedule that I have for Donna includes virtually no known venues for August 1925. She played in Buffalo, NY from July 27th to August 2nd. She also played in Oklahoma City from September 6th through the 9th. So, her playing at an Orpheum Theatre could be almost anywhere. (Cinematreasures.org indicates there are some 335 Orpheum Theaters in the United States.

Conclusion

(Probably August)  1925 – Unknown Location – Orpheum Theatre – Donna Darling’s Review (on stage with Meyers & Nolan and Tom Calloway). I’ll need to wait until more newspapers are digitized to determine when and where Donna played the Orpheum Theatre.

Endnotes:

[i] “List Of First National Pictures Films”. 2019. En.Wikipedia.Org. Accessed December 3 2019. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_First_N

[ii] My typical search of this type includes Newspapers.Com, Genealogy Bank, Newspaper Archives, Elephind, Don’t List, and Fulton Postcards.

———— DISCLAIMER ————

Donna Darling Collection – Part 57

The Orpheum and the Majestic

Treasure Chest Thursday
By Don Taylor

For this week’s Treasure Chest Tuesday, I’m looking at a page from the Donna Darling Collection that includes two clippings.

“Leon The Great” Pleases Orpheum

The mystery act of “Leon the Great,” advertised as the headline stunt on the bill current at the Orpheum, went over with a bang, but is forced to share honors with Primrose Semon and the Donna Darling revue.

The former is the snappiest and hardest working redhead to appear here in several months. Shad had a stock of clever songs and with her partner got across some original quips.

Donna’s singing, two comely toe dancers, and a comedian who was actually funny at times constitute the Donna Darling revue.

Stone and Leever get some good stuff across, but should get together with the comedian in Donna’s revue and flip coins for a couple of comic songs that both acts use.

“Leon the Great” is mysterious enough….

Analysis

This clipping comes without any date or location information.

  • Donna played the Orpheum in Clinton, IA on December 9th thru the 11th, 1926.
  • Donna Played the Orpheum in Des Moines on 2nd thru the 5th of January 1927.
  • Donna had a return engagement to the Orpheum in Clinton, IA on January 16th thru 19th, 1927.

According to the advertisement[1], Donna played at the Orpheum in Des Moines with The Great Leon, Miss Primrose Seamon, Stone & Leever, and Hartley and Patterson on January 2nd 1927. I have been unable to find any ads or articles for Donna in Clinton (either date) so far. However, it is unlikely that the same 5 acts played in both Des Moines and Clinton. As such, I’m confident this article relates to Donna’s show in Des Moines.

Majestic Theatre Program

MAJESTIC
THEATRE

IOWA’S FINEST
AND SAFEST
PLAY-HOUSE

Program
Season 1926-1927
Program (Continued)

DONNA DARLING REVUE

—With—
Sammy Clark
Assisted by Hal Dixon & Co.
A Super Song Revue—A Dazzling dance fantasy—A Novel
Comedy Oddity in Five Scenes

Analysis

Handwritten on the clipping are the words “Dubuque Iowa.” From previous work I know that Donna performed the Donna Darling Review at the Majestic Theater in Dubuque, Iowa from December 12th through December 15th. I wrote about some other clippings from that show in the Donna Darling Collection #55. I added DDC-57 to the listing for that show.

Conclusion

December 12-15, 1926 – Dubuque, IA – Majestic Theatre – Donna Darling Revue – Newspaper Archive – DDC-55, DDC-57.

ENDNOTES

[1] “1 Jan 1927, 8 – Des Moines Tribune At Newspapers.Com”. 2019. Newspapers.Com. Accessed October 24 2019. https://www.newspapers.com/image/324007959/?terms=%22Donna%2BDarling%2BRevue%22.

Donna Darling Collection – Part 56

Majestic (Harrisburg, PA) and York Opera House (York, PA)

Treasure Chest Thursday
Vaudeville
Donna Darling & Boys
By Don Taylor

For this week’s Treasure Chest Tuesday, I’m looking at three clippings from one page (0110) of the Donna Darling Collection.

Majestic Theatre

The first two clippings relate to Donna’s playing at the Majestic Theatre.

The first is a simple ad.

MAJESTIC
The Talk of the Town

Frederick V. Bowers
Popular Musical Comedy
Star and Song Writer,
In His
The first is a simple ad.
With a Bevy of Pretty Girls
— — —
COMING THURSDAY
Another Musical ComedFavorite
DONNA DARLING & BOYS

Sadly, nothing in this ad indicates which of the many Majestic Theatres this was nor does it indicate when. Luckily, an accompanying clipping on the same page provides a likely location and date for the show.

Majestic Theatre,
Harrisburg Pennsylvania
Week of April 3, 1922

MAXINE & BOGGY
The Comedy Dog

STEIFF PIANOS used in this Theatre

Spencer—CASE & MAYNE—Edith
In
“I WOULDN’T DO THAT”

Beautiful Musical Comedy Favorite
MISS DONNA DARLING & CO.
Assisted by Murry Walker and Jack Finney
In a Song and Dance Cocktail
“AS YOU LIKE IT”

MORGAN & MORGAN
“Making you Laugh”

MELODY LAND
In
Abbreviated “VARIETIES”
A Cycle Of
Songs and Dances
With
White and Mills
Juliet Beaumont
Kathleen Harrington
Ethel Cook
Assisted by

Olga Sirlis……………….Pianist
Martha Conwell …… Saxophonist
Charlotte Maloney…Violinist
Verna Dorn …………… Drummer
Scenery by Robert Law Studio
Staged by Douglas Royce

Newspaper articles, found at Genealogy Bank, confirmed that Donna played at the Majestic in Harrisburg on April 6th, 7th, and 8th. Also, in the Harrisburg Patriot on April 4th was the same ad in the clippings.

York Opera House

The third clipping is part of a York Opera House show.  No date is provided, but articles at Newspapers.Com confirmed that Donna played at the York Opera House in York, Pennsylvania, on April 3rd to 5th. The clipping shows many of the same acts seen in the Majestic clipping.

In place of Case & Mayne is:

Ralph                 Jim
KITNER AND REANEY
In “An Ocean Episode”

And in place of Morgan & Morgan was:

Lorraine         Verna
HOWARD & SADLER
Presenting their Harmonious
Comedy Songalogue
“Wedding Belles”

Program items A and B are missing in both the clippings, it appears that all other filler films started the two showings. For example, at the York Opera House, instead of “Case & Mayne” and “Morgan and Morgan” was the last chapter of “Breaking Through” and “Aesop’s Fables.”

Conclusion

The “Life of Madonna Montran” was updated with the following:

April 3-5, 1922 – York, PA – York Opera House – Donna Darling & Boys – News May 2019. DDC-56.

April 6-8, 1922 – Harrisburg, PA – Majestic Theatre – Donna Darling & Boys (Murry Walker & Jack Finney) in “As You Like It.” – Genealogy Bank – DDC-56.

Actions

  • Write about Donna playing in York, PA, and the York Opera House.
  • Write about Donna playing in Harrisburg, PA, and the Majestic Theatre.

Sources

  • Clipping: Majestic Theatre – Harrisburg, PA – Coming Thursday – SCAN0110
  • Clipping: Majestic Theatre, Harrisburg, PA – Week of Apr 3, 1922 – SCAN0110
  • Clipping: York Opera House – SCAN0110
  • Genealogy Bank – The Patriot (Harrisburg, PA) dated 4 April 1922, Page 14.
  • Genealogy Bank – The Patriot (Harrisburg, PA) dated 7 April 1922, Page 18.
  • Newspapers.Com – The York Daily Record (York, PA) dated 5 April 1922, Page 9.