[Broadside]: Theatre Royal, Dewsbury: Messers Osmond & Spiers' Company, in the Weirdly Sensational Drama - The BLACK VAMPIRE

Dewsbury: Dawson & Son, Printers, 1901.

Price: $1,500.00

Unbound. Large broadside. Approximately 9.75" x 30". Printed in blue ink in several type sizes. Several old horizontal folds, one short tear, and modest chips yo the right margin affecting no text, very good. Broadside for a play apparently created to capitalize on the vampire craze precipitated by Stoker's novel *Dracula* (published in 1897), which in turn was derived from medieval legends. The broadside gives detailed information on the members of the cast including "The Vampire - The Black Death of Paris - by Itself," "Ritza, The High Priest of Karma," and various heiresses, detectives, and so forth. Also provided is the sequence of the acts and scenes. The play premiered in early 1900; this particular performance is advertised here for the week of August 12th, 1901. A very attractive contemporary evocation of the fascination for vampires, which doesn't seem to have waned.

A detailed internet search for this play revealed little beyond a few contemporary reviews. Little can be found out about the authors other than an outside reference to a 1900 production of *The Yellow Death* set in mainland China, and before that Spier’s five-act drama *Father Satan* performed at the Britannia Theatre in London in 1896. The Theatre Royal was built in 1865, converted into a movie theater in the 1930s, and torn down in the 1960s. A visually appealing artifact (with the title *Black Vampire* in especially large display type) of a seemingly lost theatrical drama produced at the height of the Dracula phenomenon. *OCLC* locates no copies.


Item #395087

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[Broadside]: Theatre Royal, Dewsbury: Messers Osmond & Spiers' Company, in the Weirdly Sensational Drama - The BLACK VAMPIRE