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Rushden Amateur Operatic & Dramatic Society

On the 15th, 16th & 17th of February 1899 the Society presented the show Black Eyed Susan in aid the St John's Ambulance Corps, Rushden Branch. The surviving papers about this production may have been kept by the Society's treasurer as the poster has been marked "paid" on most of the adverts around the programme. J S Clipson & Darnell's furniture, glass & china were the only two who had not paid at the time.

BY DOUGLAS JERROLD
In Aid of St. John's Ambulance Corps, Rushden Branch
INCIDENTAL MUSIC
Arranged and Composed by Mr. W. S. BROWN
SCENERY BY E. V. & A. WILLIAMS,
Late of Drury Lane, Covent Garden and Her Majesty's Theatre.
Uniforms, Costumes &c., by JOHN HYMAN & Co., Costumiers to the Principal Theatres.
Cast of Characters
William
Mr. W. Hewitt
Doggrass (a Miser)
Mr. G. H. Parkin
Gnatbrain
Mr. J. W. Waite
Captain Crosstree
Mr. A. Mumford
Jacob Twigg
Mr. J. Dickens
Ploughshare
Mr. J. Bugby
Admiral
Mr. W. H. Moody
Raker
Mr. G. E. Cunnington
Hatchet
Mr. G. E. Woodward
Innkeeper
Mr. A. N. Other
Lieutenant Pike
Mr. R. Cunnington
1st Marine
Mr. W. Wood
2nd Marine
Mr. F. Reeve
Lieutenant Harris
Mr. F. Pratt
Blue Peter
Mr. A. Packwood
Quid
Mr. A. Groome
Seaweed
Mr. E. Linnett
Yarn
Mr. S. Perkins
Ben Hawser
Mr. S. Percy
Tom Taut
Mr. D. Danvers
Jack Halyard
Mr. T. Willmott
Captain Dalrymple
Mr. A. Ashby
Captain Patterson
Mr. A. Sargent
Captain Hartopp
Mr. W. H. Darnell
Captain Paget
Mr. T.T.Clarke
Captain Grosvenor
Mr. H. Chester
Captain Trevor
Mr. W. H. Pingston
Midshipman
Mr. J. Watson
Polly Perkins
Miss L. West
Nancy
Mrs. F. Shortland
Nellie
Miss F. Darnell
Carrie
T. Brown
Hattie
Miss E. Waite
Kathleen
Miss E. Knight
Nora
Miss L. Sargent
Dolly Mayflower
Mrs. J. Dickens
Black Eyed Susan
Mrs. W. Hewitt
Orchestra
Violin
Leader Mr. W. S. Brown
Violin
Mr. F. White
Violin
Mr. H. Underwood
Cello
Mr. I. S. Clipson
Bass
Mr. W. Lockie
Cornet
Mr. F. Robinson
Trombone
Mr. D. Percival
Clarinet
Mr. F. Chapman
Piano
Miss Clipson
Early productions included:

“The Lancers” in February 1898,

“Snowdrift” in 1898,

“The Purser” and

“Black-eyed Susan” in 1899,

“Much Ado about Nothing” in February 1901

and “Les Cloches de Corneville”

all at the Public Hall.


Unknown drama group?
We also have this photograph of what appears to be a drama group. Please does anyone have any ideas - is it a production by this Society?

The Rushden Echo & Argus, 4th April 1930, transcribed by Gill Hollis.

Rushden amateur theatricals of the nineties are recalled by this photograph, and the fullest description received in from:- Mrs. K. Parkin, 55, Higham-road, Rushden, to whom a Postal Order for 5/- will be sent.

Mrs. Parkin writes:-
The photograph under the heading “Who Were They?” published in last Friday’s issue of “The Rushden Echo & Argus” is that of a group of members of the Rushden Amateur Operatic and Dramatic Society, in “The Lancers,” produced at the Public Hall, Coffee Tavern lane, Rushden (now a billiard hall) in February 1898.

The names are as follows:-

Back row (left to right):- Mr. Alfred Groom (Rushden); Mr. Pearson; Miss “Tot” Brown (now Mrs. Alfred Pettitt Rushden); Mr. George Henry Parkin (who died in 1915 at Bedford); Miss Fanny Wheeler (now Mrs. Fred Shortland, Rushden); Mr. Walter Wood; Mr. George W. Coles (the well known Rushden councillor and magistrate); Miss Florence Darnell (now Mrs. E. Mustill, Northampton); Mr. George Ellis (now abroad).

Middle row (left to right):- Mr. Horace Streather (Raunds); Miss Minnie Wheeler (now Mrs. H. Addison, Rushden ); Mrs. W. L. Sargent (nee Miss Nellie Parkin, now of London); Mr. W. F. J. Hewitt (producer for the society and now managing director of the Wellingborough Palace Co. Ltd.); Mrs. John Dickens (Rushden); Miss Annie Cunnington (now Mrs. Cooper); Mr. James Waite (who died in 1927 at Northampton).

Front row (left to right):- Miss Kate Linnitt (now Mrs. K. Parkin, Rushden); Miss Louie Sargent (the late Mrs. W. Pingstone, Rushden); Mr. John Dickens (Rushden).

The photograph was taken by Mr. Sam Powell, now retired and living at Wellingborough, whose business is carried on by Mr. Edgar Linnitt, High-street, Rushden. Mr. G. H. Parkin was absent when it was taken, and his photograph was inserted later.

Other productions of the society between the years 1896 and 1900 were “Much Ado About Nothing,” “Black-eyed Susan,” and “Les Cloches de Corneville.”


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