History of Australian Theatre On Line

Suggestions for further research


When Vaudeville was King By Charles Norman, Spectrum Publications, Melbourne 1984.

A unique first person account from a performer about his experiences in Australian Vaudeville. Norman is not known for his pinpoint accuracy, but his stories are entertaining. They provide an insiders view of characters such as Harry Rickards and others that is missing from other accounts of Australian theatre history. Freely available at libraries.


Harry Rickards; A performance centred portrait from music hall to vaudeville Gae Mary Anderson.1998

To my knowledge, this is the only full account of Harry Rickard's life that exists in any sort of written form. A thesis for the University of Sydney, this account has it all. Copies of Rickard's songs, unknown details of his music hall life and details of his early performances. As it concentrates on his performing career it does not contain much information about his managerial activities in Australia. It is however, the best researched document about his early life. Available from Sydney University rare book library. I am unsure about access to the general public. It is best to ring the  university for details.

Research on the Hub Theatre Newtown NSW Compiled by David Johnstone, 2003.

This document contains rare details about Harry Clay's operation in Sydney. It's also an interesting account of the transformation of the Hub theatre from vaudeville to cinema. The author/compiler is not an historian but the information he provides is useful. Available from Marrickville Council's local studies centre, Petersham Town Hall Sydney.


Tivoli Souvenir By Edward Maas, 1913.

A short history of the Tivoli up to 1913. Includes biographical details and photos of performers and a discussion of Harry Rickards, John Leete, and a little about Edward Maas himself. Available at the University of NSW library, possibly at the State Library in Sydney and the State Library of Victoria. A really interesting read mainly because it contains first hand accounts of early performers.

The Tivoli Story. 55 Years of Variety

Written as a souvenir for the 55th anniversary of the Tivoli in Melbourne. A pamphlet which details the activities and performers in the theatre from the 19th century to the 1950s. A really good resource for the Tiv, particularly as it contains lots of photos of performers from all the eras. Available at the State Library of Victoria and I think at Mitchell Library Sydney. I got my copy in Melbourne.

The Tivoli; A chronology of Melbourne's home of Vaudeville The Passing Show 3 By Frank Van Straten.

A four page summary of Tivoli events , performances and history. A good introduction to the theatre in Melbourne. Contains lots of names of performers, so useful for family history purposes.

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