Augustin Daly - Encyclopedia

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AUGUSTIN DALY (1838-1899), American theatrical manager and playwright, was born in Plymouth, North Carolina, on the 10th of July 1838. He was dramatic critic for several New York papers from 1859, and he adapted or wrote a number of plays, Under the Gaslight (1867) being his first success. In 1869 he was the manager of the Fifth Avenue theatre, and in 1879 he built and opened Daly's theatre in New York, and, in 1893, Daly's theatre in London. At the former he gathered a company of players, headed by Miss Ada Rehan, which made for it a high reputation, and for them he adapted plays from foreign sources, and revived Shakespearean comedies in a manner before unknown in America. He took his entire company on tour, visiting England, Germany and France, and some of the best actors on the American stage have owed their training and first successes to him. Among these were Clara Morris, Sara Jewett, John Drew, Fanny Davenport, Maude Adams, Mrs Gilbert and many others. Daly was a great book-lover, and his valuable Iibrary was dispersed by auction after his death, which occurred in Paris on the 7th of June 1899. Besides plays, original and adapted, he wrote Wojington: a Tribute to the Actress and the Woman (1888).

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