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Black, George (1890–1945), theatre manager and impresario, was born on 20 April 1890 at 3 Court, 7 Sutton Street, Birmingham, one of three sons of George Black, then a house-painter, and his wife, Mary Davies. In the late 1890s his father gave up a post as property master at the ...

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Butt, Sir Alfred, first baronet (1878–1962), music-hall entrepreneur and racehorse owner and breeder, was born on 20 March 1878, the only son of Frederick Butt, a builder. He was educated at Westminster School and, after leaving school, worked in the accounting department at ...

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Sir Charles Blake Cochran (1872–1951) by Howard Coster, 1929 [[Left to right] and Beverley Nichols (1898-1983)] © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Cochran, Sir Charles Blake (1872–1951), impresario, was born on 25 September 1872 at 15 Prestonville Road, Brighton, Sussex, the fourth of the nine children of James Elphinstone Cochran (1840–1900), tea and cigar importer, and his wife, Matilda Arnold née Walton (1838–1929), daughter of a merchant navy officer and the widowed mother of a son by her first marriage. At the age of seven ...

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Cornelys [née Imer; married name Pompeati], (Anna Maria) Teresa [known as Madame Trenti, Mrs Smith] (1723?–1797), singer and impresario, was born in Venice, probably in 1723, to the Genoan actor and impresario Giuseppe Imer (d. 1758) and his wife. Many particulars of her life, especially before 1759, derive from ...

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Delfont, Bernard [formerly Boris Winogradsky], Baron Delfont (1909–1994), theatrical impresario and leisure executive, was born on 5 September 1909, at Tokmak, Ukraine, Russia, the second son of Isaac Winogradsky (1879–1935) and Golda (later Olga) Izenstadt (c.1887–1981). His father ran a drapery store in ...

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Bernard Delfont, Baron Delfont (1909–1994) by unknown photographer, 1981 Getty Images

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Ferrars, Ernest Richard D'Arcy de (1855–1929), musician and pageant master, was born Ernest Richard D'Arcy Ferris on 2 April 1855 at 24 Belvedere, Bath, the youngest of the eight children of Samuel Charles Ferris (1806–1858), of the Indian Civil Service, and his wife, ...

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Frece, Sir (Abraham) Walter de (1870–1935), music-hall entrepreneur and politician, was born on 7 October 1870 at 90 Salisbury Street, Everton, Liverpool, the eldest son of Henry de Frece, music-hall manager, and his wife, Marian Rowe. He was born into a prominent Liverpool...

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Holland, William (1837–1895), showman and music-hall and theatre entrepreneur, was born on 26 December 1837 at 58 Newington Causeway, London, the son of alderman William Holland, linen draper and wholesale upholsterer, and his wife, Mary, née Bayly. Though apprenticed to the family business, he was enamoured of amateur theatricals and left the trade while still young to promote minstrel shows, in which he played the interlocutor....

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Sir Ian Bruce Hope Hunter (1919–2003) by unknown photographer, 1981 UPPA/Photoshot

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Hunter, Sir Ian Bruce Hope (1919–2003), impresario, was born on 2 April 1919 at Green Croft, 63 Crescent West, Hadley Wood, Middlesex, the youngest of the five children of William Ouchterlony Hunter, a Scot, and his English wife, Edith Alice Millicent, née Glover...

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Kiralfy [formerly Königsbaum], Imre (1845–1919), dancer and impresario, was born in Pest in the Austro-Hungarian empire, the first of the seven children of Jacob Königsbaum, a clothing manufacturer, and his wife, Anna (Rosa) Weisberger. The Königsbaums were a prosperous family of Jewish descent. However, their family business was ruined in the Hungarian revolution of 1848, after which they suffered temporary poverty and ...

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Lascelles, Frank William Thomas Charles Christian Culpeper (1875–1934), pageant master, was born in Sibford Gower, Oxfordshire, on 30 July 1875, the youngest of the three children of Edward Thomas Stevens (1832–1898), vicar of Holy Trinity, Sibford Gower, from 1874 until his death, and his wife, ...

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Frank William Thomas Charles Christian Culpeper Lascelles (1875–1934) by unknown photographer, c.1910 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Eric Douglas Morley (1918–2000) by Stephen Markeson © News International Newspapers Ltd

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Morley, Eric Douglas (1918–2000), impresario, was born at 13 Macklin Street, London, on 26 September 1918, the son of William Joseph Morley, hotel chef, and Bertha Emily, née Menzies.

Inclined to hyperbole, Morley claimed that his father had been at Oxford and spoke nine languages. What is more certain is that his father died when the boy was two, and his mother then married a sergeant-major. Both of them had died of tuberculosis before he was twelve. He had been educated in ...

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Nicholson, Renton [called the Lord Chief Baron] (1809–1861), impresario, was born in a house opposite to the Old Nag's Head tavern in the Hackney Road, London, on 4 April 1809; he was brought up by his sisters and educated under Henry Butter...

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Parnell, Valentine Charles (1892–1972), theatre manager and impresario, was born at 7 Trelawney Road, Hackney, London, on 14 February 1892, one of six sons of Thomas Frederick Parnell (1862–1957), journalist, and his wife, Elizabeth White. His father was for a time editor of the ...

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Valentine Charles Parnell (1892–1972) by unknown photographer, 1948 [right, with the American actress Betty Hutton at the Palladium] © Popperfoto