On this day–May 19–three remarkable things occurred in theatre history. In 1603, James I granted Shakespeare’s company his royal patronage, changing their name from the Lord Chamberlain’s Mean to the King’s Men. In 1883, in Omaha, Nebraska, Buffalo Bill opened his very first public performance of his Wild West Show. There had been a couple of earlier dress rehearsals, but this was the first official opening of his new combination company. And in 1897, Oscar Wilde was released from prison only to discover that all of his possessions had been auctioned off.
- Today in Theatre History–THE FIRST AMERICAN-BORN ACTOR? WHO KNOWS?–March 13, 1790
- Today in Theatre History: WILLIAM WELLS BROWN’S “ESCAPE” LEAPS TO FAME–January 30, 1858
- Today in Theatre History: SHERIDAN’S FIRST PLAY, THE RIVALS, GETS A DO-OVER–January 28, 1775
- Today in Theatre History: OFF TO SEE THE WIZARD WITH DOROTHY AND IMOGENE THE COW–January 21, 1903
- Today in Theatre History: GEORGE BERNARD SHAW, “A THIRD RATE IBSEN”–January 9, 1905
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