13th December, 1923
His Majesty King George V
Her Majesty Queen Mary
Executive Producer : Sir Oswald Stoll
Musical Director : Alfred Dove
By 1923 the Royal Variety Performance was already becoming established as a major event in the world of entertainment and this year there were few problems selling tickets for the Coliseum.
As usual the theatre was brightly decorated for the occasion and the effect was enhanced when, as the King and Queen and the rest of the Royal entourage entered their box, thousands of electric fairy lights came on, lighting the whole auditorium, while the band played the National Anthem.
The show, which lasted two and a half hours without an interval was noted for a one-act play by William Archer called The Samurai, with Lewis Gilbert and Ann Trevor. The idea of 'straight theatre', and also ballet, mixing with variety and music-hall acts was gradually becoming more and more popular on British stages.
Another hit was the comedy sketch 'The Disorderly Room' by comedian Tommy Handley, later a star of radio.
More exotic offerings were provided by the Marimba Band of Guatemala and the Griffin Brothers and Miss Lutie and 'their remarkable performing horse 'Pogo.'
The impact of the Great War was still uppermost in people's minds, and in the spirit of the time, The Prince of Wales made a genrous donation to provide seats for ex-servicemen who had been wounded on active service.
BOBBIE HIND and his all-British Sonara Band
KATRINA and JOAN
THE GRIFFITHS BROTHERS
The Samurai with LOLA KARSAVINA, SESSUE HAYAKAWA, LEWIS GILBERT, ANN TREVOR and DORA de WINTON.
ROYAL ALBERT HALL ORCHESTRA
Brighter London with BILLY MERSON, REG SHARLAND, EDDIE JAYE, BERNARD DUDLEY, LADDIE CLIFF and RENA HALL.
RUSSIAN BLUE BIRD PLAYERS
LOIE FULLER BAND
The Disordely Room with TOM WALLS, RALPH LYNN, TOMMY HANDLEY, JAMIESON DODD, CECIL BAINBRIDGE and FRED KEMP.
13 December 1923