Friday, June 25, 2010

The Ingenious Mr.Tich

Harry Relph was only a little over four feet tall with six digits on his hands and toes. This didn't worry him very much, however. Other people would have considered these characteristics disadvantages, but little 'Mr.Tich' used them to his advantage in his bright career.

The sixteenth child of a 77 year old Kent publican, Harry Relph was born in 1867. He soon decided that he wanted to go on the stage. At the tender age of 12, he was aa 'blackface' singer in one of London's remaining pleasure gardens,
the Rosheville. He soon started singing in the music halls, starting at the Middlesex

He decided on the name of 'Mr.Tich' because of the Tichborne Claimant. This man claimed to be the heir to an ancient baronetcy, but the real heir was lost at sea. The claimant weighed 25 stone, so Mr.Tich chose the name to emphasize the differences between them. It was catchy and short, and turned out to be a wise choice.

Mr.Tich's act was alternatively grotesque and hilarious. He became famous for impersonating many different kinds of people, including grocers, fairy queens, and Spanish dancers. He also satirized famous people, such as Louie Fuller.

One of his most popular acts was the one in which he danced on boots that were almost half his size. They were 28 inches long. Audiences loved to see him balancing on these tall boots.

Mr.Tich was very popular in Paris as well as London. He appeared at the Folies Bergere in Paris many times. The French honoured him by admitting him to the Academie Francaise.

Mr.Tich's Boot Dance

Monday, June 21, 2010

Yvette Guilbert and The Wit of the Staircase

The French call the sharp and witty retort, l'esprit de l'escalier, which means 'the wit of the staircase'. Yvette Guilbert was a past master at this, apparently.

She attended Marguerite Charpentier's salon, frequented by the wealthy and the famous. One of these grand ladies recognized her. According to The Private Lives of the Impressionists by Sue Roe, this grand lady exclaimed: 'My dear...I bet you don't remember me. We used to meet often a long time ago, before you became a star, when you were still a little seamstress.'

'Of course I remember,' replied Guilbert. 'I'll never forget how difficult it was to get you to pay your bills.'

The Fast Set

Art and Architecture, Mainly has written a fascinating post about this: The Fast Set in Edwardian Times. The comments are also interesting!

I don't agree that being an aristocrat in Edwardian times was boring.

St.Paul's in 1905

You can see a photo of St.Paul's in 1905 here at History Pin. This site is a great idea!

Online Auto Insurance

Do you need insurance for your motor vehicle? You can save money by obtaining quotes on the Internet. The cheapest way to get insurance for your car is probably by buying it online. If you type your postcode into the box at Online Auto Insurance you will be provided with a list of quotes to choose from.

It's a great idea to get lots of quotes, but it is also best
to look into other ways of saving money on your car insurance.
Online Auto Insurance provides lots of articles and tips about buying insurance and saving on your car insurance. You can also ring them up if you need extra advice.

According to one article at Online Auto Insurance, for example, you can save money on your vehicle insurance by driving smartly. This involves avoiding collisions, and avoiding distracting activities, such as using your mobile phone while driving. If you have a good driving record, you should be able to save on your insurance.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Another French Music-Hall Star

The beautiful Yvette Guilbert was another star of the French music-halls. She led an interesting life - she began by singing risque songs and then she became quite a scholar!