Gabrielle Ray

'Gabrielle Ray said, 'I am always dancing; I love it! When I don't dance, I sing. What else is there to do?'

This Was The “Gaiety” – Liverpool Echo – Thursday 24th November 1949



 This Was The “Gaiety” Girls And Glamour


So the famous Gaiety Theatre, in the Strand, is to be reopened. Shades of stage-door johnnies; supper at Romano’s – now no more – and Rules (behind the Adelphi, where Cochran ran two years with “Bless the Bride” and followed it with the less successful “Tough at the Top,” and which still remains pretty much the same); of champagne drunk from a chorus girl’s slipper – and it did happen; and the glamour girls who smiled, sang or danced their way into jewels, wealth and the peerage. Thus, at what the young reporter would call the psychological moment, comes “Gaiety, Theatre of Enchantment” (W. H. Allen, 20s), by that grand historian of the stage. W. Macqueen Pope, himself a figure in many theatrical enterprises through the years.

John Hollingshead, who founded the Gaiety, may be just a name, but the matinees he started became world-famous, and he made the theatre part of London’s gaiety itself. George Edwardes, who first joined him later took over, fathered the Gaiety Girl, is still remembered as a fabulous figure surrounded by beauties whose curves and smiles decorated millions of picture postcards, and made some men feel far too young. What oldster doesn’t remember Gertie Millar (later a countess), Marie Studholme (my own young dream), Margaret Bannerman, Belle Bilton, Rosie Boote (who became a marchioness), Camille Clifford, Constance Collier, Ada Reeve, Evie Green, Lily Elsie, Ellaline Terriss, Isobel Elsom, Gaby Deslys (said to have “dethroned” a king), Mabel Love, Kate Vaughan, Nellie Farren, Sylvia Storey (another countess), Edna May, Gabrielle Ray, Gladys Cooper, Phyllis and Zena Dare – even schoolboys collected their pictures.

Pope has stories of them all and of the great actors and comedians, the managers, the authors and composers. Stars have their moments now, but their glamour is mostly on celluloid and bobby-soxers and hysterical young women get their clothes torn to get near their favourites (mostly women) when they “appear in flesh.” Compared with these ebullitions the stage-door johnnies were just odd men on a desert island. This is a grand book – 500 pages of stage cavalcade, with 100 pictures (and how queer some of the fashions look).

Liverpool Echo – Thursday 24th November 1949



October 7, 2018 Posted by | Actress, Biography, Gabrielle Ray, Social History, The Gaiety Theatre, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Gabriel Ray – The Stage – Thursday 9th September 1920




London, Monday, Sept. 6

Fate took me this evening to the first show at the Woolwich Hippodrome, where I enjoyed the ability of Tom Stuart. Tom is the Captain Bairnsfather of the variety halls, for some of his concert types are just as true to life and as likeable as Bairnsfather’s “Old Bill,” “Alf” and “Bert” are on the printed page. Stuart would do well in America, for there is hardly a city in the U.S.A. whose audiences would not scream at his cock-eyed semi pickled tenor or his pompous baritone, while the Italian study he does would alone put him (Stuart) over. While waiting for Tom to appear I had a pleasant surprise in Mollie Butler on second, but worthy of a star spot. Dear Miss Butler, I am on old music-hall reporter, and I have flattered myself that I was immune to the “dying child” stuff that is about done to death. But you “got me” with that little French recitation so quietly and so simply done, and you have a real tear in your voice as well as in your eye. To sum it up, you speak like a cultured girl. I enjoyed your work, and hope to see you again.

Back to town in time to see part of the show at the Palladium. Laughed heartily at Jack Pleasants and thoroughly enjoyed Gabriel Ray, whose dainty act goes to prove that cleanliness and sweetness is a marketable vaudeville commodity. I chatted for some time with Gabriel in her dressing-room, and found her just as nice “off” as “on.” The one thing I particularly admired about Miss Ray is her humane treatment of the children in her act. All the little tots love their leading lady, and they look forward to their nightly summons to her room to have the finishing touches put to their make-up by Miss Ray herself. From the dressing-room I heard the big applause finish of the Pounds Sister’ act, but missed the opportunity see Lorna and Toots work.

The Stage – Thursday 9th September 1920



October 6, 2018 Posted by | Actress, Biography, Gabrielle Ray, Social History, The Palladium, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Gabriel Ray – Scottish Referee – Monday 19th September 1904



In the course of my business, I see very many papers, some of them heavily illustrated. I mention the fact as a prelude to entering an emphatic protest against the condemnable persistence with which the editor men are printing portraits of Miss Gabriel Ray, a lady of the Gaiety. Miss Ray, I am delighted to admit, is an attractive looking girl – most attractive, in fact – a gem, in short, of purest Ray serene but that is no reason why the thing should he overdone in this maddening fashion. Presently there will be money for the editor who is able to advertise that his celebrated weekly contains not a single photograph of Miss Gabriel Ray. The X-ray in the zenith of its notoriety never received publicity of the kind that is coming the way of the other Ray.


Scottish Referee – Monday 19th September 1904

October 6, 2018 Posted by | Actress, Biography, Gabrielle Ray, Social History, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

London Hippodrome Ball – The Referee – Sunday 9th January 1910





WHAT promises to be a record gathering of charming and beautiful actresses will be seen at the London Hippodrome Ball, to be held at Prince’s Galleries next Wednesday week.

Among the ladies who are on the committee and who, have promised to attend are the Misses Sybil Arundale, Jean Aylwin, Pauline Chase, Margaret Cooper, Kate Cutler, Phyllis Dare, Zena Dare, Lily Elsie, Elizabeth Firth, Marie George, Evie Greene, Maidie Legarde, Gracie Leigh, Maggie May, Olive May, Gertie Millar, Gabrielle Ray, Jessie Rose, Ellaline Terriess, Hilda Trevelyan, and Ruth Vincent.

The committee also includes Baron Oscar von Ernsthausen, Sir Bryon Leighton, Mr. Joseph Coyne, Mr. Seymour Hicks, Mr. Leslie Stuart, and Mr. George Graves.

The London Hippodrome’s splendid orchestra will be in attendance. Dancing at 11.30 pm. ; carriages at 4 a.m. The joint-secretaries of the ball are Mr. Fred Trussell and Mr. Thomas Miller. Tickets including supper, are a guinea each, and may be obtained at the box-aloe of the Hippodrome.


The Referee – Sunday 9th January 1910


September 21, 2018 Posted by | Actress, Biography, Gabrielle Ray, Social History, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Lord Roberts’s Veterans’ Relief Fund – The Music Hall and Theatre Review – Friday 3rd April 1908

EVERYTHING seems to promise well for the matinee performance at the Alhambra on April 30th in aid of Lord Roberts’s Veterans’ Relief Fund. Quite a number of leading actors and actresses have promised to take part in the programme. Among these are Misses Violet Vanbrugh, Lena Ashwell, Evie Greene, Gertie Millar, Madge Vincent, Meredith Meredro, Jean Aylwin, Gabrielle Ray, Minnie Baker, Constance Collier, who will recite “The Leaguer of Lucknow;” Miss Lily Elsie and Mr. Joseph Coyne in the waltz duet from “The Merry Widow ;”  Miss Olive May and Mr. Robert Hale in a duet from “The Girls of Gottenhurg ;” Mr. Fred Farren and Miss Topsy Sinden from the Empire ; Messrs. Arthur Bourchier, W. H. Berry, Leonard Mackay, Edmund Gwenn and Harry Lauder. In addition there will be several military episodes during the afternoon, notably a torchlight tattoo. Apart from the boxes seats are priced from five guineas to two shillings. There is such a demand for the stalls that the Committee have decided to allot in priority of application or to sell by auction. Soldiers and sailors in uniform will be admitted half-price to the cheaper parts of the house.


The Music Hall and Theatre Review – Friday 3rd April 1908



August 27, 2018 Posted by | Actress, Biography, Gabrielle Ray, Social History, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Rejane Matinee – The Illustrated London News – Saturday 7th October 1911






PARIS, September 23 1911

Further details of the terrible disaster which has befallen the French Navy show that the first reports were in no way exaggerated, and that, in addition to the loss of the fine warship Liberté, in Toulon Harbour, and the loss of several hundred lives, other vessels of the French Mediterranean squadron suffered injury, and numbers of their crews were either killed or injured.

When the fire broke out in the ammunition hold of the Liberte, and the first explosion occurred, little danger was apprehended. Then the fire gained, and reached the fore ammunition hold. Another explosion followed, and on this occurring 100 men who were on deck jumped overboard. The rest of the crew, who were asleep below, were awakened by the explosion, and rushed on deck. They wore about to jump overboard, but were ordered to their stations.

Four explosions followed the first in quick succession. The vessel in the forward part became wrapped in a sheet of flame, which rose to a considerable height. Then the fifth explosion occurred, and after it the vessel sank like a stone.

Hundreds of men were hurled into the air in the final explosion; and it is believed were dead before they reached the water.

Dense volumes of smoke, which enveloped the roadstead of the harbour were rising, but when they had cleared a part of the hull only of the ill-fated battleship was seen still above the water, surrounded by a tangled mass of spars and wreckage.

A number of injured men were seen clinging to the wreckage, and assistance was promptly sent to them from the other warships in the harbour.

At the time of the disaster the Liberte was in charge of Captain Joubert, Commander Jaurès, who is a brother of M. Jean Jaurès, the leader of the French Socialists in the Chamber of Deputies, being absent on furlough.

Three hundred and fifty officers and men belonging to the Liberte are missing, and 100 sailors from the other warships. In addition to this loss of 450, a number of men who went to the rescue of their comrades on the destroyed vessel lost their lives.

Anchored close to the Liberte were the République, 14,635 tons, and her sister battleships the Democratic and the Verite each of 14,640 tons. The flying debris caused by the explosion struck the Republique, and many of the members of her crew were killed. So far, 50 men on that vessel have been lost. The Democratic and Verite were also badly damaged, and they lost 20 in killed and 50 were injured. The Republique was so badly damaged that she had to be hurriedly docked.

The Mercury, Wednesday September 27, 1911





For the special matinee arranged to be given at the Hippodrome on Friday, the 6th, and organised by Mme. Rejane, in aid of the sufferers by the Liberte disaster at Toulon, a very strong programme was prepared, including about forty special turns, together with some items from the current Hippodrome entertainment. All of the leading actors and actresses who were in a position to do so gave their services, and many distinguished people gave their patronage to the occasion. It was expected that the royal box would be occupied by the French Ambassador, another by the Italian Ambassador, and a third by the Lord Mayor and Sheriffs. Forty popular actresses acted as programme-sellers.

The Illustrated London News – Saturday 7th October 1911

The Rejane Matinee.


The programme arranged for the Rejane Matinee in aid of the Liberte sufferers should easily attract an overflowing audience to the Hippodrome on Friday afternoon. In addition to Mme. Rejane and Leoncavallo, who will conduct a special selection, the following have promised to appear : Miss Lily Brayton and Mr. Oscar Asche (scenes from “Kismet”); Miss Margaret Cooper (at the piano); Miss Phyllis Dare and Mr. G. Grossmith, jun. (duet from “Peggy”); Mr. George Carvey (song); Miss Cicely Courtneidge (scene from “Mousme”); Miss Clara Evelyn (the Espinosa Waltz song); Mlle. Adeline Genee; Miss Evie Greene; Miss Gertie Millar and Mr. Joseph Coyne (dancing duet, from the “Quaker Girl”); Miss Gabrielle Ray (song from “Peggy”); Miss Florence Smithson (song from the “Mousme”); Miss Cecilia Loftus; Miss Irene Vanbrugh and Mr. Gerald du Maurier (sketch, “A Slice of Life”); Miss Ethel Levey (coon songs); Miss Marie Tempest; Miss Phyllis Neilson-Terry (song); Miss Violet Vanbrugh (recitation); Sir George Alexander (recitation); Mr. Albert Chevalier (selection of songs); Mr. W. H. Barry (selection); Sir John Hare; Mr. Alfred Lester (sketch); Miss Lily Elsie and Mr. Huntley Wright (duet); Miss Connie Ediss (song) ; Mr. George Graves; Mr. Harry Tate, in “Motoring

The Music Hall and Theatre Review – Thursday 5th October 1911

Rejane Matinee Result.


Over nine hundred pounds was raised for the benefit of the sufferers by the Liberte disaster through the matinee at the Hippodrome on Friday, thanks to the energies of Mme. Rejane and the managerial staff of the house. The result was announced by Sir Herbert Tree.


Music Hall and Theatre Review – Thursday 12th October 1911

August 21, 2018 Posted by | Actress, Biography, Gabrielle Ray, Social History, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Gabrielle Ray – Earl’s Court Carnival – The Music Hall and Theatre Review – Thursday 18th January 1912

Earl’s Court Carnival.


To-morrow evening “London’s Greatest Advertisement Carnival” takes place at the Welcome Skating Rink, Earl’s Court Exhibition. Prizes to the value of £2OO will be offered. Many prominent firms are giving prizes for the best representation of any of their advertisements, or for the best suggested advertisement for them. Miss Phyllis Dare has consented to present the prizes, and Miss Florence Smithson, Miss Gabrielle Ray, Miss Madge Temple, Miss Isabelle Dillon, Miss Daisy Irving, and other members of the theatrical profession have agreed to cooperate with the judging committee.


The Music Hall and Theatre Review – Thursday 18th January 1912

August 9, 2018 Posted by | Actress, Biography, Gabrielle Ray, Social History, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Engagement – Gabrielle Ray – The Irish Independent – Wednesday 10th January 1912



“I am informed,” says the Paris correspondent of the “Daily Mail,”  “that Mr. Eric Loder, son of Mr. Alfred Loder and nephew of Major Eustace Loder, has become engaged to Miss Gabrielle Ray, the musical-comedy actress. Mr. Loder, who is staying at the Hotel Maurice, has confirmed the news of his engagement. Miss Ray, when seen later, also smilingly confirmed the news, but said she would prefer to make no statement for publication. No date is yet fixed for the marriage.”


The Irish Independent – Wednesday 10th January 1912

July 19, 2018 Posted by | Actress, Biography, Engagement, Eric Loder, Gabrielle Ray, Social History, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Miss Gabrielle Ray at a theatrical garden party – Sir Cecil Beaton

Gabrielle Ray – The Sketch – Wednesday 6th July 1910

June 17, 2018 Posted by | Actress, Biography, Gabrielle Ray, Social History, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Gabrielle Ray – The Sketch – Wednesday 6th July 1910

The Actors’ Orphanage Fete – The Tatler – Wednesday 6th July 1910

June 17, 2018 Posted by | Actress, Biography, Gabrielle Ray, Social History, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment