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  • Caricature
    Cooke, George Harold, born 1881 - died 1950
  • Enlarge image


  • Place of origin:

    Hanley (made)

  • Date:

    25 October 1904 (drawn)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Cooke, George Harold, born 1881 - died 1950 (artist)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Pen and ink and wash on paper

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This caricature is of Gilbert Girard when he was performing at the Grand Theatre of Varieties, Hanley, during the week of 24 October 1904. He was billed as the ‘Phenomenal Animal and Instrumental Imitator’. It is one of the many superb caricatures of Edwardian music hall performers that were drawn by the artist George Cooke when he was based at the Grand Theatre. He compiled them in a series of albums. Also on the bill that week were Joe Peterman’s company in The Belle of New York and Cliff Ryland. They were also drawn by Cooke. Gilbert Girard performed in the halls in the early 1900s billed as an ‘Animal and Instrumental Mimic’, and at London's Canterbury Music Hall in 1906 as ‘The Human Harp’. This image shows that his animal impressions included a dogfight and a cat courtship. In February 1910 he was still advertising himself in Great Britain in The Performer magazine as an animal and instrumental mimic. But by 1919 he was on Broadway in America, in Penny Wise (1919) and later in Twelve Miles Out (1925).

Physical description

Pen, ink and wash caricature on pink paper of Gilbert Girard, sitting on his haunches, as a bull mastiff, with a cock crowing on his head, a dog-fight taking place on his right and a cat-fight on a wall to his left.

Place of Origin

Hanley (made)


25 October 1904 (drawn)


Cooke, George Harold, born 1881 - died 1950 (artist)

Materials and Techniques

Pen and ink and wash on paper

Marks and inscriptions

Merrily Yours in barks and growls. Gilbert Girard. Oct 25th 1904
Signature; Hand written; Pen and ink


Height: 25 cm, Width: 18 cm

Object history note

This caricature is of the American music hall performer Gilbert Girard, who billed himself as an 'Animal and Instrumental Mimic', and who appeared on the bill of The Canterbury Music Hall, 1906, as 'The Human Harp'. Little appears to be known about his career, although by 1919 he had returned to America, and was appearing in the Broadway stage in 'Penny Wise' and in 1925 in 'Twelve Miles Out'. The caricature comes from the first of several albums compiled by the graphic artist George Cooke, featuring performers working in music hall in the early 20th century. The album is dated 1903-4-5.

Descriptive line

Caricature of the American 'animal and instrumental mimic' Gilbert Girard, from an album of caricatures drawn by George Cooke. Dated 25 October 1904.


Pen and ink; Watercolour


Drawn; Painted


Caricatures & Cartoons; Entertainment & Leisure; Drawings


Theatre and Performance Collection

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