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Ask Someone Who Knows - AJ Marriot answers your questions
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PostPosted: Mon May 29, 2006 2:33 pm    Post subject: Ask Someone Who Knows - AJ Marriot answers your questions Reply with quote


    ASK SOMEONE WHO KNOWS... AUTHOR 'AJ MARRIOT' - MAY 2006

    Comedian and author of the highly acclaimed books, 'Laurel and Hardy - The British Tours' and 'Chaplin - Stage By Stage', AJ Marriot answers your questions


Thanks to AJ Marriot for participating in our “Ask Someone Who Knows” feature. Here are his answers to your questions...

AJ MARRIOT: Hello Ross, and all the readers of the Laurel & Hardy Forum. Thanks for submitting your questions. A couple of questions weren't right for this session. Anyone who didn't get their question answered can write to me personally. I hope you will find the answers of interest.

ROSS OWEN: I would like to know, what is your favourite story about the boys visit to the UK?

AJ MARRIOT: I think my favourite story from Laurel & Hardy’s tours is the week they played at the Butlin’s Holiday Camp, Skegness. As some of you may know, I was a Redcoat Entertainer there for two seasons – 1973 and 1974. At the on-site Gaiety Theatre we had a different show each night. Sunday Night was “Guest Night,” when the top-of-the-bill would be an act who was “known” but had never been really “big.” To think, therefore, that such massive Hollywood film stars as Laurel and Hardy had actually played a week there is almost unbelievable. If someone had come back from their holiday and told you: “Guess who we saw at Butlin’s? – Cannon & Ball,” then I doubt you’d be phased, but for someone to tell you: “We saw Laurel & Hardy” you’d think the Skegness air had affected their brains.

Not only did Stan and Babe play a FULL week there, but they also took part in the daily entertainment programme; judging such competitions as the “Holiday Lovelies; Knobbly Knees; and Children’s “Mannequin Competition.” The equivalent today would be to go to Skeggy and see, say, Jim Carey and Billy Crystal walking around; which would, I’m sure you’ll agree, be a little surreal. But then this one week sums up Laurel and Hardy’s whole attitude. They fully realised that they were no longer in the film industry and that the only market for their talents was to be celebrities - working for the people and with the people. Such graciousness would be hard to find in any other major star. Most become recluses, rather than be seen to take that step down.


KAY: Hello “A.J”, thank you for your fantastic books. I enjoy reading "The British Tours" every time I hold it in my hands. The second one, "CHAPLIN - Stage By Stage" is new and I haven't finished reading it yet. Probably that's why I'm asking these questions now:
In "The British Tours" Stan is quoted about his debut in Mumming Birds on 6 December 1909: "In due course I was given a small part to play but, before I could make my first big appearance, I received a set-back. The wardrobe mistress told me, "There's a new comedian just joined us from one of the other companies…". She was talking about Chaplin who played Stan's role that day instead. (Page 27)
Well I have seen in "Stage By Stage" so far that Chaplin was part of the Karno troupe in 1908 and 1909. So was the wardrobe mistress talking about another Karno troupe (and there were some more travelling around Europe) when she said "the other companies" or did Chaplin work for another company in the late 1909 first and than came back to Karno?

AJ MARRIOT: Hello Kay,
Sorry to report that Stan & Ollie never set foot in Germany, but it’s great to know that you have such an interest in their tours over here. And thank you too for your kind words about my books. It’s very flattering to know that they are enjoyed by people whose first language is not English.
To answer your question: The Karno company was not just one troupe of players going around the country playing one sketch. There were numerous different troupes, playing different sketches. To illustrate, you will find below, all the different companies who were playing the week that Laurel made his debut as a Karno comedian:
Karno Companies playing 06 December 1909
London, BALHAM, Duchess Palace
London, EAST HAM, Palace
London, MILE END Paragon
London, OXFORD STREET, Oxford Music Hall
London, POPLAR Queen's
London, WALTHAMSTOW Palace
Manchester, HULME, Hippodrome and Floral Hall - Mumming Birds (Stan’s debut)
Surrey, CROYDON Empire
Sussex, BOGNOR, Assembly Rooms
Yorkshire, BRADFORD, Empire
Scotland, GLASGOW, Grand - Mother Goose (where Stan had been interviewed by Karno the previous week.)
Chaplin may not have appeared with any of the above as he had only just returned from a four-week appearance at the Folies Begere, in Paris. The following week, however, he went back into the sketch “The Football Match,” which he stayed in (apart from weeks missed through illness) until 8 January 1910, when his involvement with that sketch was ended prematurely, And so, on 10 January, he was unexpectedly transferred to “Mumming Birds,” at the Liverpool Pavilion, which is where he and Stan first met.


KAY: Another question is: I read in some books that Karno wanted Stan as Chaplin's understudy from that time he saw Stan. After what was said it can't be true. It seems that it came that way more by accident, or after Karno saw Stan while working for him - but not that this was his first thought. Is that true? Thanks a lot for your time. (question submitted by Kay)

AJ MARRIOT: Stan first came to Karno’s notice when both he and Charlie were playing in the sketch “Jimmy the Fearless.” Charlie had stated at rehearsals that he didn’t want to play the part and Karno was called in to find out what the problem was. Karno couldn’t allow for the young upstart Chaplin to be seen to be calling the shots, and so when the company manager, Frank O’Neil, put forward Stanley Jefferson to play the part, Karno immediately accepted. Stan then played a full week as “Jimmy,” in which, by his own accounts, he did exceedingly well. (Despite exhaustive searches I have never been able to unearth reviews from the two venues that Stan appeared at in “Jimmy the Fearless.”) Come the second week, however, Chaplin took over the main role, and Stan went back to his minor one. For the rest of the run Stan would, by natural selection, have been Chaplin’s stand-in, in that, had Chaplin been unable to make a performance, Stan would have, well er .... stood in. From that time on it would appear that Stan become Chaplin’s understudy for all the other sketches they went on to play together. So, Yes! You can say that Stan became Chaplin’s understudy by chance.

ANDY HENLY (Stan): Hi “A.J” We've got our "Locations" websites in common, as you know, but which of the Laurel and Hardy "locations" which still exist, would you say is the most unusual?

AJ MARRIOT: Hello Andy,
Yes! I’ve seen your “Locations,” site and hope you’re going to continue to expand it. It’s a good incentive for fans to go and visit all the venues associated with the Boys.
As for the most unusual location I’d say it has to be Dockwray Square, North Shields. Reason is that people visit it for all the wrong reasons, and miss all the history. Firstly, the statue obviously wasn’t there when Stan lived there, so this doesn’t take you back into history. And then, No. 8, where the Jeffersons lived has now gone. So why visit there? Well, Stan was always writing about his memories of Dockwray Square, and a lot of what he talks off is still there. In one letter he states that Dockwray Square was his playground. Thankfully, the grassed square he speaks off is still accessible. He also writes of his many visits to the Fish Quay, just down the steep flight of steps from Dockwray Square. That too is still there and, just recently, film taken on the quayside, contemporary with Stan’s time there, was unearthed, so we can compare “now” and “then.”
Another landmark is the “High Lighthouse.” This is on the top of the bank, and was lined up by returning fishermen with the lower lighthouse, to guide them in to dock. One of Stan’s schoolboy pals was the son of the lighthouse keeper, and he writes of playing in there. The young Stanley Jefferson was also photographed in front of the High Lighthouse, holding the rein of a horse, just prior to leading the procession out of Dockwray Square, as part of “The Relief of Mafeking” celebrations.
And yet another place to visit is the site of the “Wooden Dolly”. The original “Wooden Dolly” was a carved wooden figure of a Cullercoats fishwife, looking much like a ship’s figurehead. Fishermen going to sea would carve off a small piece of the figure, and keep it as a good luck charm. Needles to say, the original didn’t last too long. It has been replaced several times, and even duplicated on different sites, but the original site is still marked by a very cheap-looking fibre glass representation of a wooden dolly.
And then true history can be traced when you spend your time going up and down the Ropery Stairs steps – the very steps that inspired Laurel & Hardy’s film “The Music Box.” (for disbelievers amongst you, see my article in the Laurel & Hardy Magazine Vol.6 No.11)
So, if should ever visit Dockwray Square, don’t just look for the modern-day blue plaque or the statue, look for the real history. And go soon, while it’s all still there.


DEAN MCKEOWN: Hi “A.J”, thanks for your time. During the research for your books was there anything you discovered that was lost in history until you unearthed the facts? What did you find most rewarding part upon completing of The British Tours, was there some specific part of the text that stood out for you above all else?

AJ MARRIOT: Hello Dean,
Good question. I’d say that the short tour Laurel & Hardy made in 1932, and the whole of the 1947 tour were “lost” until I unearthed them. And it wasn’t just the dates I traced, but the people who were there at the time – some as witnesses; others who were a major part of the story. Many of these have now passed on, and I feel very privileged to have met with them and been given their first-hand accounts; I’m referring to people like Bernard Delfont, who brought them over here; Billy Marsh who booked all the theatres and acts.; Olive Karno; who knew of Stan through her husband, Fred Karno Junior; and the hundreds of members of the public who came forward to give accounts of meeting Laurel & Hardy. Without this, the information would truly have been lost forever.
I think the piece of text which shows the real fraternal love that Stan and Babe had for each other is reflected in their coming to England in 1932, which reads:
“Stan had been over to England to see his father in July 1927, but since then had had no time off; so when it came to taking a holiday, England was an obvious choice. That Babe chose to go with him, though, when he could have gone literally anywhere in the world, speaks volumes for the high regard the two partners had for one another. After all, they had lived in each other's pockets for those five years, so one could be forgiven for thinking that the last thing they would want to do, would be to go on holiday together.”
On that tour, when they were emerging from a crush in Tynemouth, a reporter recorded the following conversation:
'What do you think of Mr Hardy?'
'He's worth his weight in diamonds,' replied Stan.
Then to Hardy, 'What do you think of Laurel?'
Hardy's 18 stone frame quivered with mirth: 'Coming through that crush just now I was mighty glad to be Hardy, but if ever I wish I were anyone else - it's Laurel.'
These were not empty words, spoken to appease a reporter's curiosity, but were a genuine indication of the high regard in which the two partners held each other.


WILLIE MCINTYRE: I have read and enjoyed your Chaplin book. I am not a great admirer of Chaplin myself, though I respect him. Do you like Chaplin? Do you like his films?

AJ MARRIOT: Hello Willie,
As you know, I have been reading Bowler Dessert for over 20 years. You do a magnificent job in providing a magazine “by the fans - about the fans.” I hope the fans show enough appreciation for you to continue compiling it indefinitely.
As for Chaplin, I have to admit that I am compelled to watch the man, and study him, but do not find myself laughing at his films. In fact, at times I want to climb into the film and smack him. A lot of his business is irritating. At times he’s like a small child begging for attention:
“Did you see me, Dad? Did you see you see what I did then? Did you see me Dad? Shall I do it again, Dad? I did it again, Dad. Did you see me? Shall I do it again?”
“No! Don’t do it again Charlie,” I feel like saying. “We’re intelligent people. We saw it the first time. Just move on - please.” And so I don’t sit easy watching his films. I mean, there are some true classic bits of business in many of his films but, by the time you’ve paid the price of indulging him for a great part of some films, you’re cold and laughter doesn’t emerge readily.
You’ll note that my book breaks off at the exact point where he leaves the stage to go into films. What interests me most is not his films, but how a tiny street urchin from South London, started up the ladder that led to him becoming the most famous man in the world. But, yes, I respect him. Of course I do. You can’t come that far and not be respected.


KAY: A member of our tent would like to know: "What was the motivation to write a book about the Laurel and Hardy tours?"

AJ MARRIOT: Hello again Kay,
In the summer of 1981 I was working as resident entertainer in a hotel, on the Isle of Man. BBC2 were nightly showing two of Laurel & Hardy’s short films, and I used to advertise these on the Entertainment Programme. Needles to say, I went into the TV lounge each evening to watch them, as I had never seen their films at the cinema. I was immediately hooked, and wanted to know more about these two very funny men. I was fortunate to pick up a copy of John McCabe’s book “Mr Laurel & Mr Hardy,” and this gave me a lot of satisfaction in filling in the background of their coming together and subsequent film-making.
McCabe’s book however, was particularly scant on information regarding the Boys’ UK stage tours. And so I read every book I could get my hands, but was still sorely frustrated by the lack of information: Most of them gave little more than “In 1947 Laurel & Hardy went to England to play a stage tour. When they returned ..... .” This had me screaming “What do you mean ‘when they returned’?” I wanted to know what they did there, and so set about doing my own book on the subject.


JDV: Hi Mr Marriot! How long did it take to write such a detailed book as "The British Tours"?

AJ MARRIOT: It took me SIX years to research and write the book. It was almost two years before I was able to track down every single stage appearance, after which I wrote to every library in the country that was near a theatre they had played, to enquire what they had in their archives; and then to the local newspaper companies with an appeal for people who had met or seen Laurel & Hardy to contact me. I subsequently ended up writing to around SIX HUNDRED people, to gather in the one piece of the jig-saw puzzle they all held. Then there was the task of collecting in all the photographs I used. And so it went on. The hard work seems to have paid off as, here we are, some thirteen years on, and the book still stands up as being factual and accurate. So I have to thank all those people who helped – most of whom have now sadly passed on.

MICHAEL AND KAY: Hello “A.J”! This question is still unanswered here in the forum. Perhaps you can help? I am trying to find information about their short stay in Sweden during their European tour in 1947/48. As far as I know they played 3 shows in October 1947: at the "Uppsala University" in Stockholm - one show in Malmoe and one show in Gothenburg. Does anyone know the exact dates? Did they do some more shows? Would be great if someone has more information. I know from your book that they were in Sweden between "after October, 5th till before October 27th". So perhaps you have the answer to that question?

AJ MARRIOT: Hello Michael and Kay,
As you may appreciate, my book was about the BRITISH tours, and so I have had no reason to do further research into the Swedish tours. Your best bet is to contact someone in Sweden. After all, that’s were all the records and the newspaper reports are.


ROSS OWEN: “A.J”, we know you performed for several years as a comedian and you have an impressive list of celebrity reviewers including Ken Dodd. Did you ever meet him and did he mention anything about his interest in Laurel and Hardy?

AJ MARRIOT: Hello again Ross,
Yes! I have had the pleasure of meeting Doddy several times. The first time was in 1974 when he did the late-night cabaret at Butlin’s, Skegness. The last time I met him, was six times. I know that sounds like nonsense, so let me explain. After Ken had bought a copy of my book he invited to meet him in his dressing room, after his show, at the Grand Theatre, Blackpool. We stayed chatting till gone 1 a.m., before getting kicked out by the stage-door keeper. As Ken thought we had more to talk about, he told me to come back the following Sunday. To cut a long story short, he invited me back six Sunday’s running. On the last three visits, he ran me home, and we sat outside my house till between 2 and 3 a.m. – as we still had so much to talk about.
Having told you are that, I am embarrassed to report that I don’t know if we talked about Laurel & Hardy or not. At that time I was doing regular Comedy Workshops, at which I would train up-and-coming comedians. Ken was very interested in these, and even expressed an intent to attend one. I kid you not.


ANDY HENLY (Stan): You are certainly an expert on the Boys' visit to Britain, and Europe. Do you have any information about any tours they did of the USA? There is a huge hole waiting to be filled by a book about any American tours, including the Forces party they did. Thanks “A.J”.

AJ MARRIOT: Hello Andy. Are you from America? If so, you could be one of the people I am looking for. Yes! There certainly is “a huge hole waiting to be filled by a book about any American tours.” There are also a huge number of Americans who ought to be doing research on them. I have been beavering away for years trying to assemble all the US Tours but, in doing so from the UK, I am limited by the amount of resources available. When wanting to trace all the US Karno Tours, in which Stan and Charlie Chaplin appeared, I made an appeal to TWO HUNDRED Americans, via The Laurel and Hardy Magazine” for help in research. Not a single one came forward.
I suppose I should be flattered that people look to me for answers on to the European and US Tours, but it also annoys me when other so-called Laurel & Hardy fans don’t take over the baton. And then, when I do go ahead with my own research and publish a book, there are those who don’t even support the project by buying a copy. It’s hardly an incentive for me to do further research.


ROSS OWEN: Finally AJ, which subject do you plan to write about next?

AJ MARRIOT: A Laurel & Hardy fan once said that he believed that everything that could be written about Laurel & Hardy, has been written. Well, I beg to differ. I can think of aspects of their lives and films which would be subjects for SIX more books – all of which would be providing new information. The European Tours, and The US Tours, would fill two books. The others I shan’t divulge, in case someone nicks my ideas.
I was about to go for “Arthur Jefferson – Father of a Comic Genius,” which would be a seventh book, but will probably go for “Karno – The Sketches.” Before that though, I still need to shift a few more copies of my first two books, in order to finance it. All orders gratefully received.
Thank you, and goodbye for now. May be we’ll meet up at a future convention.


Fraternally Yours, “A.J” Marriot
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PostPosted: Mon May 29, 2006 10:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks AJ for taking the time to answer our questions in such great detail its much appreciated.

Razz
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PostPosted: Tue May 30, 2006 7:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you AJ and good luck for your future projects. Razz
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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2006 12:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

AJ Marriot wrote:
Hello Andy. Are you from America? If so, you could be one of the people I am looking for. Yes! There certainly is “a huge hole waiting to be filled by a book about any American tours.” There are also a huge number of Americans who ought to be doing research on them. I have been beavering away for years trying to assemble all the US Tours but, in doing so from the UK, I am limited by the amount of resources available. When wanting to trace all the US Karno Tours, in which Stan and Charlie Chaplin appeared, I made an appeal to TWO HUNDRED Americans, via The Laurel and Hardy Magazine” for help in research. Not a single one came forward.
I suppose I should be flattered that people look to me for answers on to the European and US Tours, but it also annoys me when other so-called Laurel & Hardy fans don’t take over the baton. And then, when I do go ahead with my own research and publish a book, there are those who don’t even support the project by buying a copy. It’s hardly an incentive for me to do further research.


Whoops.... Do I detect a hint of bitterness here? I think attacking TWO HUNDRED Americans is a little harsh. Perhaps they didn't have anything to offer up, were busy or had other contractual obligations. Also, just because fans don't all go out and write books AJ, doesn't make them any less of a fan. It's not everyone's calling to do so. I have seen the British Tours book for sale in several book stores, so how do you know whether or not they bought a copy? Surely we create these things for the joy of bringing them into the world for the people who "do" appreciate them? That has to be a good enough incentive and besides, there have and always will be critics but these things are not for them, they are for the fans and people that care.

Let's try to keep things less negative here.

So we shall never know what AJ stands for...... I'll not sleep tonight now.

Mike
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 04, 2006 7:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mike Quinn wrote:
wrote:
Whoops.... Do I detect a hint of bitterness here? I think attacking TWO HUNDRED Americans is a little harsh. Perhaps they didn't have anything to offer up, were busy or had other contractual obligations. Also, just because fans don't all go out and write books AJ, doesn't make them any less of a fan. It's not everyone's calling to do so. I have seen the British Tours book for sale in several book stores, so how do you know whether or not they bought a copy? Surely we create these things for the joy of bringing them into the world for the people who "do" appreciate them? That has to be a good enough incentive and besides, there have and always will be critics but these things are not for them, they are for the fans and people that care.
Let's try to keep things less negative here.


NO! You don’t detect a hint of bitterness here. “Disappointment” - maybe but “bitterness” – no! I know what lethargy is, and realise it is a trait that no-one has yet been able to overcome.
As for “attacking TWO HUNDRED Americans,” I didn’t even attack even ONE. I merely quoted the results of my appeal. I feel proud that two hundred Americans choose to subscribe to an English magazine that I have been Co-editor and Features Writer for for four years, and am grateful extremely grateful for their support. Andy Henly asked me if I had any intention of researching the US Tours, at which I pointed out that there weren’t the resources to do so in England, and that it seemed as though I couldn’t count on assistance from anyone in the US. Had I wished to attack Americans en masse I would have followed the facts by comment, a jibe, or opinion - none of which I did.
Also I didn’t suggest that fans should go all out to write books. My appeal was centred around fans popping along to their local library and researching specific dates I gave them, just as I did with the Chaplin book. “Many hands .....” and all that.
How do I know whether they’ve bought a book or not? Seeing as how the book is self-published, and distributed by me, I have literally packed, addressed, and mailed every single copy that has ever sold. I therefore know exactly how many have been sold, and their destination.
You say "Surely we create these things for the joy of bringing them into the world for the people who "do" appreciate them?” I’m not aware of anything you have created, but if were to spend many unpaid years doing so, invested ten of thousands of pounds, and it sold, say, six copies, would you consider “That has to be a good enough incentive”? If bringing joy into the world is a good enough incentive to do something, then you could always give away 10,000 FREE CDs of the footage you have of Laurel & Hardy in Ulverston? It would be a gesture that fits your criteria in every detail.
You say: "Let's try to keep things less negative here." I stated my intent to carry on writing books. You could have e-mailed in to encourage Laurel & Hardy fans to rally round and support my next one – or the previous two - but, instead, you just give a blanket excuse for them to do nothing. I will leave the readers of the Forum to decide who is being negative.
“A.J” Marriot
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 04, 2006 8:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There's gonna be a fight...... Confused
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 04, 2006 9:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Shocked Laughing Laughing Laughing

I bought my British Tours in W.H. Smiths not long after it was first published. It has been a source of great joy for me and is an excellent source of information. A little later I met AJ at a Helpmates convention and approached AJ, told him I already had bought the book and thanked him for all the hard work he had put into it. It is an extremely unique piece of work and I reccommend it to ANY Laurel and Hardy fan.

See, no fight... Wink

To answer AJ's point, when I complete my documentary, I shall endeavor to get it out into the world in the best way possible. Yes I have spent a considerable sum on it to date and will continue to do so. If I get my expenses back and then some, great- that's good business and that profit can be put into the next project. However, if I make a loss on it, well it was my choice, my risk and I won't be mad at all the people I "thought" should have bought it. I'll be happy to have made a personal piece and will have enjoyed the journey and I know that many will still be able to enjoy it. So I don't understand AJ's logic but perhaps other readers do and that's fine. Hey here's an idea.... I'll give away one free copy of my finished documentary for every free copy of British Tours book AJ gives away. Sounds like a deal eh?

So best to consider this a debate with two different personalities and be done. We have both had our say so now here is my official endorsement. Buy the great book everyone, you can find it at:

http://members.aol.com/rlewis1010/catalogue3.htm

and even have it signed by the author no less It can be shipped worlwide and you can pay via PAYPAL (no link to any free copies yet but I'll keep my eyes open). Let us not forget the Laurel and Hardy Magazine which can be subscribed to:

http://members.aol.com/oxford0614/subs.html

Shame on us "so-called Laurel & Hardy fans", (to quote AJ himself) who do not spend their hard earned cash on these wonderful products.

Does anyone have any ideas what AJ stands for yet?.... Laughing

Now it is time for me to be kicked off this board... I shall miss you all
Sad Sad Sad

Seriously, you guys are all great and I love reading what you all bring to this. Take care all,

Mike
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 04, 2006 9:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mike Quinn wrote:
Now it is time for me to be kicked off this board... I shall miss you all

Mike


There will be no hangings tonight. You are both entitled to your opinions. There is no harm in healthy debate and you both seem very definate in your opinions.

All I can say on this matter is it is probably best to continue the conversation via the private messaging system. Hope it works out for the best. ...runs off into the distance.


René Riva wrote:
There's gonna be a fight...... Confused


That comment just made me laugh out loud and spit my tea all over the place.
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 04, 2006 9:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the plug for the book, Mike. Much appreciated. However, it would be even more appreciated if fans bought it DIRECT from me. Rob Lewis may be my best buddy pal, but I have have no wish to give him "half of everything that's coming to me." My web-site is:

http://members.aol.com/Lahbritishtours/index.html

B.S. Thanks to all for the great replies. This is fun.

----------------------
See what a little kindness can do? Mad Very Happy
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Mike Quinn
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 04, 2006 10:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry my bad!

http://members.aol.com/Lahbritishtours/index.html

Razz

Ross, you are awesome.... I immediately had memories of Goon show sound effects of footsteps and door slams Laughing Laughing Laughing

Mike
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René Riva
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 04, 2006 10:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dear A.J.,

I have owned your book THE BRITISH TOURS since it came out. I purchased it from THE PERFECT DAY TENT in the Netherlands. I still enjoy it and I hope you can autograph it for me one day. Razz

Dear Ross,

Now you made me laugh out loud! Laughing
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Lucy
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 04, 2006 10:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dear AJ-
I had the pleasure of speaking with you on the telephone last year. I wondered, since buying your Tours book how long Stan Laurel played in Todmorden for? And was Charlie Chaplin with the group. I don't live far from Todmorden and wondered where abouts the building was situated and if it still stands?

Thankyou,

Lucy Very Happy
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 05, 2006 3:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lucylh1890 wrote:
Dear AJ-
I had the pleasure of speaking with you on the telephone last year. I wondered, since buying your Tours book how long Stan Laurel played in Todmorden for? And was Charlie Chaplin with the group. I don't live far from Todmorden and wondered where abouts the building was situated and if it still stands?

Thankyou,

Lucy Very Happy


Hello Lucy. Was that you on the phone? I thought it was Mr. Jones.
Stan played at the Hippodrome, Todmorden, for just one week - commencing 13 September 1909 - in a melodrama called “Alone in the World.” This was three months before he joined the Karno Company, where he later met Chaplin (see earlier entry in my Q&A session).
I’m delighted to report that the Hippodrome is still there, and still actively functioning as a playhouse – run by The Todmorden Amateur Operatic and Drama Society. (Halifax Road)
I had the great pleasure of playing there myself, as the cop in “The Driver’s Licence” sketch, along with brilliant Laurel & Hardy impersonators Simon Wooff and Ray Saunders, as part of the 1992 Olivier Centenary Celebrations. Yes! Please do go and visit it or, even better, go and see a production there. It’s a beautiful little theatre, run by some very nice people, whom we have to thank for keeping it alive.
Typing “Todmorden Hippodrome” into a search engine will get you further information. Meanwhile, here is one you might like to start at:

http://cinematreasures.org/theater/3346/

That’s all there is – there is no more!
Fraternally Yours,
"A.J" Very Happy Mad
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 05, 2006 5:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thankyou Mr Marriot-

I greatly appreciate it, yes I was the girl you spoke to about finding a good publisher for my artwork. It turns out I havn't a publisher but I am doing very well selling my pictures.

Thanks again,

Lucy Very Happy
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 21, 2006 6:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

AJ wrote:
it annoys me when other so-called Laurel & Hardy fans don’t take over the baton. And then, when I do go ahead with my own research and publish a book, there are those who don’t even support the project by buying a copy. It’s hardly an incentive for me to do further research.


Here's to a new beginning, maybe the forum can be the platform you've been waiting for to help you hook up with the fans who do care.

"If the mountains won't come to Mohammed...Mohammed could always come to the mountains!" ...in other words, why not join us as a regular poster here on the forum. It's always nice to have the support of knowledgable lumineries such as yourself AJ. Very Happy

Ross

BS
you might even learn a thing or two here yourself Razz
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