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  • Place of origin:

    London (printed)

  • Date:

    1869 (printed)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Judd & Glass (printer)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Printed paper

  • Credit Line:

    Harry R. Beard Collection, given by Isobel Beard

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This poster for the pantomime at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane - or 'Comic Christmas Annual' as the author E.L. Blanchard called it - marks the debut at Drury Lane of the talented Vokes family of dancers and comics who toured as a family company with a reportoire of one-act plays. They also dominated pantomimes at the Lane where they were employed annually from 1869 until 1878. Fred Vokes, the 'legmania' dancer was the biggest star, with his three sisters - Jessie, who carried out all the business arrangements and 'mothered' the family, Rosina, and Victoria, who was equally good in melodrama and serious plays, together with Fawdon and Walter Vokes, who were 'adopted' and Mrs. Fred Vokes.

Edward Lehman Blanchard wrote pantomimes for Drury Lane from 1852-1888, and during these years changes occured in the subjects and format that established pantomime much as it survived into the 20th century, although still featuring a Harlequinade, in this case a double one, with two of each character except Harlequina. This pantomime also included scenery by the great scene designer William Beverly, and costumes and masks designed by Dykwynkyn.

Physical description

Typographical poster advertising morning performances of the Theatre Royal Drury Lane Grand Comic Christmas annual pantomime Beauty and the Beast, or Harlequin and Old Mother Bunch!, printed in red and black, DRURY LANE printed in upper case red lettering at the top of the poster, and the words 'COMIC ANNUAL' and 'OLD MOTHER BUNCH' also in red upper case lettering, with the word 'BEAUTY' in decorative 2-part red and black lettering. Also featuring in upper case black typeface the names of the lessee and manager Mr. F.B. Chatterton, the author E.L. Blanchard, the scenery designer William Beverley, the mask and costume designer Dykwynkyn, the composer W.C. Levey, the choreographer John Cormack and the arrangers of the comic scenes and tricks Harry Boleno and John Cormack. Also including the names of the performers Jessie Vokes, Victoria Vokes, Rosina Vokes, Kate Santley, Hudspeth, Hall, Seagret, Hastings, Liddell, Lewis, Harriet Coveney, Fred Vokes, Fawdon Vokes, Brittain Wright, Mr. Moreland, Mr. Mitchenson, Master Russell. The poster also advertises the double harlequinade performed by Harry Boleno and Little Rowella as Clowns, the Pantaloons Paul Herring and J. Morris, the Harlequins Stephen Saville and W. Fawdon Vokes, the Columbines Misses Rosina and Jessie Vokes, and the Harlequina Miss Lizzie Grosvenor. In smaller typeface are the names of the other attractions in the pantomime - Tremont Minstrels, The Manley Family, Le Petit Rarey and his Wondrous Performing Pony, Peterson's Troupe of Performing Dogs, The Smallest Brass Band in the World, Wimbledon Camp, The Infant Volunteers and Military Evolutions and Review.

Place of Origin

London (printed)


1869 (printed)


Judd & Glass (printer)

Materials and Techniques

Printed paper


Height: 75.5 cm, Width: 50.8 cm

Descriptive line

Poster advertising morning performances of Beauty and the Beast! or, Harlequin Old Mother Bunch, the Christmas pantomime at Drury Lane Theatre 27 December 1869. Letterpress. Printed by Judd & Glass, London, 1869. Harry Beard Collection.

Production Note

The printer's location is noted on the poster as 'Doctors' Commons, London EC'


Printing ink; Paper


Entertainment & Leisure; Advertising


Theatre and Performance Collection

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