Tuesday, May 24, 2016

The Illustrators' Show

The place to be on May 13, 1932 was the Illustrators' Show at the New Yorker Theatre, now Studio 54. This was an annual benefit with racy content not unlike the Dutch Treat Shows. The program describes a revue in two acts written by and starring famous illustrators. James Montgomery Flagg contributed "The Illustrators' Song" to the first act. Tony Sarg put on a marionette play in the second.

Rube Goldberg supervised the whole event. He contributed a sketch entitled "Diddle Me This" which features such thoughtfully-named characters as Dr. Belcher McBurp and Mr. and Mrs. Hiram Broccoli. Like many of the illustrators, he performed in his own sketch. Otto Soglow contributed and performed in two sketches, "On Guard" and "Home!!!" In J. P. McEvoy's sketch "Art for God's Sake," Rube Goldberg and Otto Soglow play their own pictures in an art gallery. There is an Arno picture on the wall as well, but Peter Arno does not seem to have been a participant. His picture is played by Peggy Young and Dow Walling. Arthur William Brown and James Montgomery Flagg also did not play their own pictures, but they were involved with the production. Patti Patterson—perhaps Russell Patterson's wife—played a nude.

Illustrators' Show program, May 13, 1932

Note:  Thanks to Tom Bloom for providing this extraordinary program.

Anyone with photos, sheet music, scripts, programs, or recordings of this show or any contemporary "Illustrators' Show "or "Dutch Treat Show, " your material is needed here on this blog.

Some of these illustrators have already been blogged about here:

Peter Arno

James Montgomery Flagg

Rube Goldberg

Carl Mueller

Lloyd Myers

Tony Sarg

John Sheridan

Otto Soglow

Encore, encore!


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