Herbert Beerbohm Tree

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Tree, Herbert Beerbohm


Born Dec. 17, 1853, in London; died there July 2, 1917. English actor, manager, and producer.

Tree’s professional stage career began in 1876. He managed the Haymarket Theater from 1887 to 1896 and Her Majesty’s (later His Majesty’s) Theater from 1897 to 1915. Between 1888 and 1914 he staged 18 Shakespearean plays. As a producer, Tree continued the traditions of C. Kean and H. Irving. He staged visually spectacular productions, often including scenes of the fan :tastic or supernatural, musical numbers, and arias. He staged crowd scenes with particular care. Tree could be quite free in dealing with a written text, rearranging or omitting entire scenes.

Tree’s Shakespearean roles included Malvolio in Twelfth Night, Falstaff in The Merry Wives of Windsor, Macbeth, Richard II, and Hamlet. He also played Nekhliudov in a dramatic version of Tolstoy’s Resurrection and Henry Higgins in Shaw’s Pygmalion. Tree founded a school of dramatic art in 1904 in London that later became the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art.


Thoughts and Afterthoughts. London, 1913.


Beerbohm, M. Herbert Beerbohm Tree: Some Memories of Him and of His Art. London [1920].
Pearson, H. Beerbohm Tree: His Life and Laughter. London, 1956.


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These "official" productions, moreover, generate their opposite, the barebones performances of campus Shakespeare clubs, in a cycle that for Menzer replicates the history of twentieth-century performance, oscillating between lavishness and austerity, Beerbohm Tree and William Poel, the RSC and Original Practices.
Built by the London Architects Messrs Runtz and Ford, who were also responsible for London's Adelphi and Gaiety theatres, it opened when Sir Herbert Beerbohm Tree and his company performed Shakespeare's Twelfth Night on December 10, 1906.
His productions have also failed to capture the academic interest accorded to the traditionally 'pictorial' pageantry of Herbert Beerbohm Tree, the 'Elizabethan' revivals of William Poel, and the work of modernist torchbearer, Harley Granville Barker (Mazer 1-6; Jackson 218).
PLAYWRIGHT George Bernard Shaw's Pygmalion opened in London at His Majesty's Theatre and starred Mrs Patrick Campbell as Cockney flower girl Eliza and Sir Herbert Beerbohm Tree as Professor Higgins.
Actor-manager Sir Herbert Beerbohm Tree played Higgins in Pygmalion and also directed the production, which opened at His Majesty's Theatre on April 11, 1914.
The first theatre at the current site was built by Herbert Beerbohm Tree in 1897 while the task of designing was undertaken by Charles J.
Also on display in the same room used by BMI's administrator, is a sketch signed by its subject, the English actor and theatre manager Mr H Beerbohm Tree (1852-1917) who had been playing Hamlet.
On the Council of the Festival were public spirited dukes, earls and specialists, such as the architect Sir Aston Webb, the President of the Royal Academy, Sir Edward Poynter, and the theatre manager, Beerbohm Tree.
The first is the actor-manager Herbert Beerbohm Tree, who produced and starred in elaborately mounted revivals of Shakespeare's plays in the West End.
tours of companies led by such British thespians as Herbert Beerbohm Tree and Henry Irving inspired American actors like Edwin Booth and Joseph Jefferson to run their own organizations.
1914 George Bernard Shaw's Pygmalion opened in London with Mrs Patrick Campbell as Eliza Doolittle and Sir Herbert Beerbohm Tree as Professor Higgins.