THE PRODIGAL DAUGHTER. (Brisbane Telegraph.)
The modem sporting and domestic drama, "The Prodigal Daughter," was produced at the Opera House last night by the Bland Holt Dramatic Company, and was enthusiastically received by an audience which filled the theatre in every p*rr. This play, like the others that have occupied the stage during the present season, hails from Drury Lane Theatre, Ita originatots were the famous manager of that home of spectacle and the late Henry Pettitt. Ie has a decided flavor of the turf, most of the characters being more or less interested in horses and hunting, and particularly in that form of equestrian competition known as steeplechasing. The action of the drama centres round the country seat of Sir John Woodinere (Mr E. C. Corlesse), a bironet, who both hunts and races. Sir John has two daughters, Robe (Miss Eli/.abe-h Watson) and Violet (Miss Virgie Vivienne), who, in actual if not intentional opposition to p »ternal ideas, allow tha Hon. Julian Belford (Mr J. Cosgrove) and Captain Vernon (Mr W. E. Baker) to fall in love with them. Maurice Deepwater (Mr A Norman), who is the disturbing element in the story, and who has a financial grip on Julian, interferes with the heaven -made matches, with the idea of substituting at least one alliance that will suit his pocket better. His scheme is to induce Julian, who has eloped with Rose, to desert her, and marry Violet, who has a respectable fortuno in her own right. Miny moving incidents occur before this plot is frnstrated, but in the end its oven urn is complete. So much for the domestic sida of the drama. To come to the sporting part, with which the other side is more or less iniiui-itely connected, it may be said that Sir John Woodmere has a horse entered for the Gtand National Steeplechase. The Duke, as the animal is called, is at a very short price in ibe beUing market when the d*y of the race is close at hand. An attempt, instigated by Deepwater, who has backed his own horse heavily, to poison The Duke, falls. Then, just as the race is about to start, Deepwater has Julian arrested for debt, but Vernon dons the gold and green colors and pilots the horse to victory. The working out of thtse racing incidents is not left to the imagination. The training stables at Woodmere Hall, and the lacecourse at Aintree, are represented on the stage in a wonderfully faithful manner, and the audience are not called upon to take any of the incidents on trust, not even the jumps in the steeplechase. With the win of The Duke the ruin and exposure of Deepw.tter, and the return of R> se, the prodigal daughter, to her father's home, the field is cleared for a happy ending to the drama. In the scenes at the stibles and at the racecourse the introduc ion of real horses adds greatly to the effect. A mechanical change, made in view of the audience, from an extei ior to an interior view of the stables, in which the horses are found in their loose boxes when the lights go up, deserves special mention. The repiesen-* tation of the steeplechase was extremely exciting. The jumps were no mean obstacles, and the enthusiasm of the audience increased as horse after horse took the leaps. Applause greeted every jump, and laughter supervened when the crowd ducked a welsher and then a policeman in the water jump, out of which one of the riders had previously been fished ; and when The Duke finished a winner on the flit, the evidences t f approval increased to a roar of applause that was prolonged for some minutes.
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THE PRODIGAL DAUGHTER. (Brisbane Telegraph.), North Otago Times, Volume XXXVII, Issue 8319, 22 October 1895
THE PRODIGAL DAUGHTER. (Brisbane Telegraph.) North Otago Times, Volume XXXVII, Issue 8319, 22 October 1895
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