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By Andrew Maunder

British Theatre and the good War examines how theatre in its numerous types tailored itself to the recent stipulations of 1914-1918. participants talk about the jobs performed by way of the theatre undefined. They draw on more than a few resource fabrics to teach different sorts of theatrical provision and function cultures in operation not just in London yet throughout elements of england and likewise in Australia and on the entrance. in addition to improving misplaced works and highlighting new components for research (regional theatre, criminal camp theatre, troop leisure, the hazard from movie, suburban theatre)  the ebook deals revisionist research of ways the clash and its demanding situations have been represented on degree on the time and the controversies it provoked. the quantity deals new versions for exploring the subject in an obtainable, jargon-free approach, and it exhibits how theatrical leisure of the time could be noticeable because the `missing hyperlink’ within the research of First international battle writing.

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Some performers – Harry Lauder, Marie Lloyd, ‘Little Tich’ (Harry Relph), George Robey – had become national institutions and would remain so. But by 1914, new cultural influences – American-influenced jazz, ragtime and spectacular revues were taking hold. Although, as Featherstone shows, it was the case that music halls and variety theatres tried to adapt, making much of their ‘authenticity’, it was during the war that their terminal ‘decline’ began (p. 180 this volume). 94 Fired by vanity, a talent for self-promotion, and a prodigious work ethic, Stoll in the 1900s, had become the central figure of the Stoll Moss Theatre Group, owning Empires and Coliseums up and down Britain.

The play also becomes an expression of what Bruce McConachie has termed the ‘hegemonic “we”’, a kind of ‘“common ground” strategy’ whereby audiences identify with the actions of certain characters on the basis of certain ‘taken-for-granted values’. 48 However, as Nicholson notes here, it was not always the case that the war’s early plays were attempting to sell the glamour of combat or lead the public mood with jingoistic fanfare. In Edmund Goulding’s God Save the King (1914) and Kenelm Foss’s The Hem of the Flag (1914), the stance is more consensual than enthusiastic.

108 When the war broke out most of the theatres based on this new organizational model failed to sustain themselves. Even Annie Horniman, whose Manchester company, founded in 1907 and subsequently based at the Gaiety Theatre, had emerged as the most committed, found it hard to compete against the escapist entertainments offered by the larger commercial managements. 110 In contrast, Birmingham’s repertory theatre survived under the leadership of Barry Jackson and John Drinkwater, despite – or perhaps because of – their pacifist inclinations.

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