Gabrielle Ray (1883-1973)
"THE LITTLE CHERUB"
By Owen Hall, Adrian Ross, and Ivan Caryll.
Produced at The Prince of Wales's Theatre.
Reviewed in the Daily Mail [London, UK] - 15th January, 1906.
BRIGHT ENTERTAINMENT AT PRINCE OF WALES'S THEATRE
When Mr. George Graves has been moved across from Daly's Theatre to the Prince of Wales's - this, of course, is merely an idle suggestion - there will be no fault to find with "The Little Cherub," the new musical play, by Messrs. Owen Hall, Adrian Ross, and Ivan Caryll, produced on Saturday night. At present the piece is very bright, the stage is crowded with pretty girls, the dresses are ravishingly beautiful, the music is spirited, dainty, melodious, and the cast, headed by Miss Evie Greene, an actress of first-rate ability, is an excellent one.
The thing lacking, though, is laughter, and no musical comedy can succeed without laughter. Messrs. Fred Kaye, Lennox Pawle, W. H Berry, and George Carroll are all clever players and players of experience. They have yet to prove, however, that they possess the knack of making an audience laugh directly they come on the stage, and keeping it laughing until they go off. As a matter of fact, there are not more than six comedians in London who have this valuable gift. Three of them are with Mr. Edwardes.
PLENTY OF DANCING
If, as we, have been told, Mr. Owen Hall went to France for his plot, he must have lost most of it in the Channel. The tale of the old gentleman who is converted from hypocritical prudishness by a charming actress, after getting into all sorts of scrapes, is by no means new to this country. Not that the story matters in the slightest, so long as the songs, and the dances, and the jokes are good. There is more than the usual allowance of dancing in "The Little Cherub"; this is an improvement.
Miss Gabrielle Ray, for example, has an extremely fascinating little dance after her Cupid song. Miss Ray is a born dancer - light, graceful, thoroughly artistic. We would willingly have exchanged fifty of her "lines" for another dance. Another, good dance comes from Mr. Carroll and Miss Elise Clare. The best of the songs, far and away, is "Experience" exquisitely sung by Miss Evie Greene. In six weeks it will be famous. A more ambitious attempt, is "The Curtain's Up," written by Mr. Adrian Ross and also sung by Miss Greene.
You play your joy or your sorrow,
Today and never tomorrow.
The call is for you so take your cue,
On the stage! The curtain's up!
In this particular number the music, unfortunately, is hardly on a level with the theme and poetic treatment of the ballad.
"A Gentleman's Gentleman," sung by Mr. W. H. Berry, a comedian who will become very popular in London, pleased the house immensely, and two numbers that have been built up with clever "business." are, " I should so love to be a boy" and "The supper girl." "Pearls" is a pretty duet, and was admirably sung by Mr. Maurice Farkoa and Miss Evie Greene. Mr. Farkoa, indeed, in the part of a rajah, helps the piece very greatly. There is nothing very new about his work, but it is always a pleasure to watch and listen to him.
In addition to the names that we have already mentioned, the cast includes Miss Zena Dare, Miss Lily Elsie, Miss Grace Pindar, and Miss Ida Lytton. All work well and brightly.