Auctions | December 28, 2010

Swann Galleries' First Online-Only Auction

Treasure Trove of Performing Arts Autographs Becomes Swann Galleries' First Online-Only Auction, From January 10 Through February 1.

Highlights include Playbills Signed by Ingrid Bergman, Vivien Leigh, Laurence Olivier, Paul Robeson, James Stewart, and Mae West

New York—A large collection of signed photographs and playbills will be offered in Swann Galleries’ first online-only auction, which runs from January 10 through February 1. The entire auction will be conducted online—including the sale preview—and there will be no printed catalogue.

The sale will offer approximately 400 lots, which consist of selections from a large collection formed in the first half of the 20th Century.

There are signed photographs of the famous, near-famous and now-forgotten--among them stage and screen actors, opera singers, classical musicians, ballet dancers and more. There are also signed playbills from Broadway and road productions, many with letters and/or contemporary clippings.

Signed and inscribed photographs include:

George Arliss, the first British actor to win an Academy Award
Eddie Cantor, inscribed photograph, showing him in blackface
Marguerite Clark, a chorus girl turned film star
Clara Clemens, Mark Twain’s daughter, starring in her father’s Joan of Arc
Rafaelo Diaz, a tenor who sang with the Met from 1917 to 1936
Julian Eltinge, two photographs of the female impersonator, one in costume
Ignaz Friedman, a Polish piano virtuoso
Paul Haakon, ballet and Broadway dancer
Josef Hofmann, piano virtuoso
Al Jolson, “The world’s greatest entertainer”
Morgan Kingston, sang at the Met with Caruso
Cleo Mayfield, half of the acting team of Lean and Mayfield
Vivienne Segal, created the role of Vera Simpson in Pal Joey
Marion Talley, debuted at the Met in 1926 at the age of 19
Mrs. Thomas Whiffen, born in 1845; performed actively into her 80s

Signed and inscribed playbills include:

Humphrey Bogart and Ruth Gordon, Saturday’s Children, signed, 1928
Jack Dempsey, signature on a 1928 program for The Big Fight
Paul Robeson, inscription on summer-stock program, 1931
Boris Karloff, Arsenic and Old Lace, signed on the cover, 1942
Gertrude Lawrence, Lady in the Dark, signed on the cover, 1942
Todd Duncan and Etta Moten, Porgy and Bess, signed on the cover, 1943
Tallulah Bankhead, Frederick March, Florence Eldridge, Montgomery Clift and Frances Heflin, The Skin of Our Teeth, signed on the cover, 1943
Tennessee Williams, The Glass Menagerie, signed on the cover, 1945
Carousel, signed on the cover by every member of the cast, 1945
Alfred Lunt and Lynn Fontanne, O Mistress Mine, signed on the cover, 1946
John Gielgud, Lillian Gish, Vladimir Sokoloff, and Dolly Haas, Crime and Punishment, signed on the cover, and inscribed by Gielgud, 1947
Henry Fonda, David Wayne, Robert Keith, and William Harrigan, Mister Roberts, signed on the cover, 1948
Mary Martin and Ezio Pinza, South Pacific, signed on the cover, 1949

The auction will begin on Monday, January 10 and will conclude on Tuesday, February 1.

For further information, please contact George Lowry at (212) 254-4710, extension 15, or via e-mail at [email protected]

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