Showing posts with label Little Cliff. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Little Cliff. Show all posts

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Little Cliff/Laddie Cliff

A couple of weeks ago I posted a postcard of Little Cliff. Amazingly, a relative emailed me with details of his life.

Here is the post card again.

And here is part of John Perry's email.

The postcard on your HAT posting of 27th February is, indeed, the English 'wonder' performer Little Cliff.

He was 14 years of age when he toured the Rickards theatres in Sydney, Melbourne and various parts of NZ in the second half of 1906. I imagine the source you found giving his age as 4 years old had dropped off the first '1'!

Little Cliff (proper name Clifford Perry) rebranded himself as Laddie Cliff the following year, when he started touring the United States. He went on to become a big star of vaudeville in US and UK in the 1920s and '30s.

He was my late father's first cousin. The family ostracised him for both going on the stage, and divorcing his first wife; both were shameful acts in those days! He died in 1937 without issue.

I also found the autograph below in my collection.

Many thanks to John for contacting me and for allowing me to reprint part of his email.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

New Postcards

The NSW Postcard Collectors Society fair is a source of many unusual and interesting theatre postcards.
For example, this lovely image of Ethel Haydon, a Victorian born singer/actress who married George Robey the famous English comedian after she started a career with George Edwardes in London.

I'm not sure, but I think this is the 'Little Cliff' who thrilled Tivoli audiences in 1906. However, he does seem a bit older than the advertised 4 years old.

This is Andrew Mack, the Irish American comedian/singer, who toured Australia in 1905. He liked it so much he returned in 1907.

But the most interesting find at the postcard fair today was this.

It's a handmade card dated 1917. The picture in the middle is a newspaper cutting.

The inscription says, "A Tribute in memory of your debut from The Knuts. 1917." The back of the card looks like this.

The handwriting says," From your stage assistant." The print identifies the card as being a souvenir from the , " National Committee of YMCAs on active service with the Australian Imperial Forces."

So is it a wartime joke? or a souvenir of a performance? It certainly is interesting.

The postcard fair always provides surprises!