“A Trip To Scarborough”

Ernest Thesiger as Lord Foppington

Malvern Festival

August 6 -20, 1931

Birmingham Repertory Theatre

August 24 - September 11, 1931

St James’s Theatre, London

September 14-19, 1931

8 perf


by J.H. Lowenthal, 1931

“Sheridan’s ‘A Trip to Scarborough’ (1777), adapted from Vanbrugh’s ‘The Relapse,’ still maintains the exquisite atmosphere of Charles II’s time, only with the difference that now the fashionable fop is put to shame and ridicule, rather than acclaimed as a model of behavior.  The affected oaths of Lord Foppington, such as ‘Slap me vitals’ and ‘Strike me dumb,’ have superseded the coarser ejaculations of the Restoration gallants.  Mr. Ernest Thesiger must surely have delighted Sheridan and Vanbrugh could they have witnessed his perfect representation of their creation.”

Portsmouth Evening News, August 10, 1931

“If [Sheridan] succeeded in pleasing a modern audience with this mildly amusing comedy at Malvern it is thanks to Mr. Paul Shelving’s beautiful costumes, to the charm with which the fashionable company wore them, and to the irresistible appearance of Mr. Ernest Thesiger as the Prince of Coxcombs and the King of Fops.”

Yorkshire Post and Leeds Intelligencer, September 15, 1931

“One of the things that most helped me when I played ‘Lord Foppington’ - it is so long ago that I can read my good notices quite dispassionately - was that my clothes were made of the most expensive stuff.  I cannot play a fop in cotton back satin.”

Ernest Thesiger, from his unpublished memoir, I Was

“Mr. Ernest Thesiger made an ideal beau, embroidering affectation with extravagance, and yet contriving to remain true to some wild reality.”

The Spectator, August 14, 1931

With Miriam Adams.  The Sketch, September 16, 1931

“...Mr. Thesiger was the most remarkable exponent in the cast.  He wears his resplendent clothes with the easy grace of a grand seigneur; his manner is lofty in satirical condescension to his surroundings; his intonations are full of vain suavity, when they are not caustically mordant.  His was the aristocratic fop from tip to toe, from powder-puff to perfumes.  There was no suspicion of masquerade in his case; he was of the eighteenth century and in it.”

The Sketch, September 23, 1931

“There was one bright spot in an otherwise very depressing evening and that was when Ernest Thesiger appeared as Lord Foppington.  He is apt, in such parts, to be overpraised by those who don’t realise that an actor’s job is to act.  Yet when suited, as now, he is incomparable - though no manager in his senses would ever engage him as ‘general understudy.’  Not that any manager would ever dare to make him so inferior an offer.”

The Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News, September 26, 1931