Master Magician of "The Spider" Laments Seriousness of Boston Audience--Fears Harvard Men Will Kid Him in Dark
"I was scared of Harvard boys trying to kid me in the dark during my seances," were the words of Chatrand the Great, the master magician who is starring in "The Spider," the mystery plays at the Majestic Theatre, this week. Chatrand, otherwise known as John Halliday, was carefully combing his hair and putting on his make-up in his dressing room before the performance
"Those seances should be taken as a game and the audiences should play along with me. If they're so stupid as to take me seriously they're fools. Both of us should kid the inspector. The man who cat-calls me in the dark is a coward, why doesn't he do it when the lights are on?"
Questioned about the differences between New York and Boston audiences Mr. Halliday asserted that they were terrifle. "There is no New York public except during the first weeks. Afterwards people come from suburbs and every place else. We don't get as many laughs out of a Boston crowd, because they take the play very seriously, but on the other hand the applause is greater at the end. However, I won't allow curtain calls during the play. The vanity of an actor is essential but if he has proper pride he will not stand for interruptions. He labors for an hour to create the impression that Smith and Brown are mortal enemies and then, after the first act, they come out and bow side by side, smiling happily!"
Mr. Halliday then related several curious incidents while carefully drawing a thin black line, darkening his eyebrows. "When the killing occurred in a New York performance a real doctor considered it his duty to try and save the wounded man's life; he left the stage as pale as a sheet and got a terrific race from the audience."
He then said that many people demanded their money back, as they had not come to see a vanacville performance. They were quieted, however, after several moments