Bio Note #16 Bert’s first stage performance 1897

This should be the final entry on Bert’s time in Sydney. In 1897 young Bert (mid twenties) was experimenting with a stage act in between his many other pursuits to make a living. Bert had appeared as a sketch artist at a number of testimonials and benefit concerts whilst in Sydney, (probably without payment) however, this time he gets possibly a chance to demonstrate his stage craft using his new projection apparatus and this possible results in ‘a paid gig’. August 1897 is 8 years before his first Vaudeville performance in New York.

Lincoln was another interesting performer from this period…… he may have been English not American ? He died in Sydney at the age of just 36. Here is his death notice from Trove. https://trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/15299492
Above – The Sydney Morning Herald review of the show. Clearly evident that Bert is using some sort of projection device with the images projected on a sheet.
Ever irreverent, The Bulletin review describes Bert’s act ‘as casting limelight illustrations’ .

Years later (15 actual years), writing his bio piece for the ‘Lone Hand’ Theatre magazine published in February 1912, Bert recounts this period when he appeared on stage during the Frank Lincoln show in August 1897.

Harry Rickards was a big Australian promoter and owned the Tivoli Theatres around the country.
State Library of Victoria

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