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Boston Burlesque Dies With the Closing of the Casino

By Russell B. Roberts

Boston burlesque died a painful, bawdy death on Saturday night, when the roaring of "Ballin' the Jack" brought the white certain down for the final in Scollay Square's Casino Theatre.

The Metropolitan Redevelopment Authority begins work today on the demolition of New England's last vaudeville theatre and construction of a multi-million dollar, high-rise government

Boston Mayor John Collins has consistently denied the theatre a permit to relocate, despite pleas from the Casino management and the city's well entrenched colony of burly fans.

Sidewalks along Hanvover St. in front of the theatre were thronged with enthusiastic vaudeville-sympe Saturday when the box office opened sales for the final, performance. Press photographers and cameramen watched while held the crowds in line and performers filed into the theatre from the next door, "The Burly Lounge, Where Show People Meet."

Ramp Scurriers

The Casino stage-successor to the Howard where "Buffalo Bill" Cody, John Wilkes Booth and Gypsy Rose Lee performed for beyond a century--has been the scene of the most riotous productions in staid New England history. Across the Casino ramp have scurried some of the best-set headliners of latter day burlesque, in some of their least-dressed performances.

Turnpoint Storm, Sabra Samarr, The Turkish Delight, Sally the Shape, and Patti Wayne. The Devil's Mistress, have headed Casino play-mile is days gone by. Irma the Body has peeled her way through the theatre be many occasions. And Candy Barr, now one of the star attractions of the annual Huntsville Prison Rodeo at the Texas State Penitentiary, first came to the Casino as an unknown novice.

SRO for Swan Song

The show Saturday night was hardly the most raucous on Casino record, but compared with traditionally devout audience participation, it made a fitting "Swan Song." The house was packed for one of the few times in the manager's recollection. Box seats which usually go unsold were filled early, and when the first attractions scampered into the spotlight there was standing room only.

Choruses of "Pop Goes the Wessel," "Coming Through the Rye," "Smoke Gets in Your Eyes," and several varieties of the Twist ushered the acts into the areas, where they received the shouts of "Take it off." (Or, in the case of one rather hefty near-middle-aged stripper, "Put it back on.")

The male performers, as is often their lot, were not much apreciated. A steel guitar player who doubled on the banjo got some support for "Heart of My Heart," but had to abandon the stage after the first verse of "My Old Kentucky Home."

A Joke

When the lines of the burty-gas man could be heard above the impatient shouts and floor-stomping, they came out in rare form:

"We'll walk into the woods," a lecherous old man tells a female companion, "and I'll show you where the butterflies make butter."

Short sayings often concerned with socially unacceptable behavior were showered down on comedians and peelers indiscriminately. The audience, one performer said after the show, "was just like any other night." Teen-agers glanced furtively around, making certain that no one they knew saw them; one old man called the burlesque his "homestead" where he had come once a week for forty years.

Some of them stood outside the theatre a long time after the show was over, watching workmen fence off the front of the building, wondering what they would be doing for entertainment this time next week. A comedian later bemoaned the loss of jobs. "Vote for Collins," he said. "He can, turn anything into a parking lot."

Vaudeville, one of American's most conscientiously pursued art forms, has been squashed from the culture of greater Boston; but no one, after all, can stand in the way of progress. Not even in a G-String.

The Metropolitan Redevelopment Authority begins work today on the demolition of New England's last vaudeville theatre and construction of a multi-million dollar, high-rise government

Boston Mayor John Collins has consistently denied the theatre a permit to relocate, despite pleas from the Casino management and the city's well entrenched colony of burly fans.

Sidewalks along Hanvover St. in front of the theatre were thronged with enthusiastic vaudeville-sympe Saturday when the box office opened sales for the final, performance. Press photographers and cameramen watched while held the crowds in line and performers filed into the theatre from the next door, "The Burly Lounge, Where Show People Meet."

Ramp Scurriers

The Casino stage-successor to the Howard where "Buffalo Bill" Cody, John Wilkes Booth and Gypsy Rose Lee performed for beyond a century--has been the scene of the most riotous productions in staid New England history. Across the Casino ramp have scurried some of the best-set headliners of latter day burlesque, in some of their least-dressed performances.

Turnpoint Storm, Sabra Samarr, The Turkish Delight, Sally the Shape, and Patti Wayne. The Devil's Mistress, have headed Casino play-mile is days gone by. Irma the Body has peeled her way through the theatre be many occasions. And Candy Barr, now one of the star attractions of the annual Huntsville Prison Rodeo at the Texas State Penitentiary, first came to the Casino as an unknown novice.

SRO for Swan Song

The show Saturday night was hardly the most raucous on Casino record, but compared with traditionally devout audience participation, it made a fitting "Swan Song." The house was packed for one of the few times in the manager's recollection. Box seats which usually go unsold were filled early, and when the first attractions scampered into the spotlight there was standing room only.

Choruses of "Pop Goes the Wessel," "Coming Through the Rye," "Smoke Gets in Your Eyes," and several varieties of the Twist ushered the acts into the areas, where they received the shouts of "Take it off." (Or, in the case of one rather hefty near-middle-aged stripper, "Put it back on.")

The male performers, as is often their lot, were not much apreciated. A steel guitar player who doubled on the banjo got some support for "Heart of My Heart," but had to abandon the stage after the first verse of "My Old Kentucky Home."

A Joke

When the lines of the burty-gas man could be heard above the impatient shouts and floor-stomping, they came out in rare form:

"We'll walk into the woods," a lecherous old man tells a female companion, "and I'll show you where the butterflies make butter."

Short sayings often concerned with socially unacceptable behavior were showered down on comedians and peelers indiscriminately. The audience, one performer said after the show, "was just like any other night." Teen-agers glanced furtively around, making certain that no one they knew saw them; one old man called the burlesque his "homestead" where he had come once a week for forty years.

Some of them stood outside the theatre a long time after the show was over, watching workmen fence off the front of the building, wondering what they would be doing for entertainment this time next week. A comedian later bemoaned the loss of jobs. "Vote for Collins," he said. "He can, turn anything into a parking lot."

Vaudeville, one of American's most conscientiously pursued art forms, has been squashed from the culture of greater Boston; but no one, after all, can stand in the way of progress. Not even in a G-String.

Boston Mayor John Collins has consistently denied the theatre a permit to relocate, despite pleas from the Casino management and the city's well entrenched colony of burly fans.

Sidewalks along Hanvover St. in front of the theatre were thronged with enthusiastic vaudeville-sympe Saturday when the box office opened sales for the final, performance. Press photographers and cameramen watched while held the crowds in line and performers filed into the theatre from the next door, "The Burly Lounge, Where Show People Meet."

Ramp Scurriers

The Casino stage-successor to the Howard where "Buffalo Bill" Cody, John Wilkes Booth and Gypsy Rose Lee performed for beyond a century--has been the scene of the most riotous productions in staid New England history. Across the Casino ramp have scurried some of the best-set headliners of latter day burlesque, in some of their least-dressed performances.

Turnpoint Storm, Sabra Samarr, The Turkish Delight, Sally the Shape, and Patti Wayne. The Devil's Mistress, have headed Casino play-mile is days gone by. Irma the Body has peeled her way through the theatre be many occasions. And Candy Barr, now one of the star attractions of the annual Huntsville Prison Rodeo at the Texas State Penitentiary, first came to the Casino as an unknown novice.

SRO for Swan Song

The show Saturday night was hardly the most raucous on Casino record, but compared with traditionally devout audience participation, it made a fitting "Swan Song." The house was packed for one of the few times in the manager's recollection. Box seats which usually go unsold were filled early, and when the first attractions scampered into the spotlight there was standing room only.

Choruses of "Pop Goes the Wessel," "Coming Through the Rye," "Smoke Gets in Your Eyes," and several varieties of the Twist ushered the acts into the areas, where they received the shouts of "Take it off." (Or, in the case of one rather hefty near-middle-aged stripper, "Put it back on.")

The male performers, as is often their lot, were not much apreciated. A steel guitar player who doubled on the banjo got some support for "Heart of My Heart," but had to abandon the stage after the first verse of "My Old Kentucky Home."

A Joke

When the lines of the burty-gas man could be heard above the impatient shouts and floor-stomping, they came out in rare form:

"We'll walk into the woods," a lecherous old man tells a female companion, "and I'll show you where the butterflies make butter."

Short sayings often concerned with socially unacceptable behavior were showered down on comedians and peelers indiscriminately. The audience, one performer said after the show, "was just like any other night." Teen-agers glanced furtively around, making certain that no one they knew saw them; one old man called the burlesque his "homestead" where he had come once a week for forty years.

Some of them stood outside the theatre a long time after the show was over, watching workmen fence off the front of the building, wondering what they would be doing for entertainment this time next week. A comedian later bemoaned the loss of jobs. "Vote for Collins," he said. "He can, turn anything into a parking lot."

Vaudeville, one of American's most conscientiously pursued art forms, has been squashed from the culture of greater Boston; but no one, after all, can stand in the way of progress. Not even in a G-String.

Sidewalks along Hanvover St. in front of the theatre were thronged with enthusiastic vaudeville-sympe Saturday when the box office opened sales for the final, performance. Press photographers and cameramen watched while held the crowds in line and performers filed into the theatre from the next door, "The Burly Lounge, Where Show People Meet."

Ramp Scurriers

The Casino stage-successor to the Howard where "Buffalo Bill" Cody, John Wilkes Booth and Gypsy Rose Lee performed for beyond a century--has been the scene of the most riotous productions in staid New England history. Across the Casino ramp have scurried some of the best-set headliners of latter day burlesque, in some of their least-dressed performances.

Turnpoint Storm, Sabra Samarr, The Turkish Delight, Sally the Shape, and Patti Wayne. The Devil's Mistress, have headed Casino play-mile is days gone by. Irma the Body has peeled her way through the theatre be many occasions. And Candy Barr, now one of the star attractions of the annual Huntsville Prison Rodeo at the Texas State Penitentiary, first came to the Casino as an unknown novice.

SRO for Swan Song

The show Saturday night was hardly the most raucous on Casino record, but compared with traditionally devout audience participation, it made a fitting "Swan Song." The house was packed for one of the few times in the manager's recollection. Box seats which usually go unsold were filled early, and when the first attractions scampered into the spotlight there was standing room only.

Choruses of "Pop Goes the Wessel," "Coming Through the Rye," "Smoke Gets in Your Eyes," and several varieties of the Twist ushered the acts into the areas, where they received the shouts of "Take it off." (Or, in the case of one rather hefty near-middle-aged stripper, "Put it back on.")

The male performers, as is often their lot, were not much apreciated. A steel guitar player who doubled on the banjo got some support for "Heart of My Heart," but had to abandon the stage after the first verse of "My Old Kentucky Home."

A Joke

When the lines of the burty-gas man could be heard above the impatient shouts and floor-stomping, they came out in rare form:

"We'll walk into the woods," a lecherous old man tells a female companion, "and I'll show you where the butterflies make butter."

Short sayings often concerned with socially unacceptable behavior were showered down on comedians and peelers indiscriminately. The audience, one performer said after the show, "was just like any other night." Teen-agers glanced furtively around, making certain that no one they knew saw them; one old man called the burlesque his "homestead" where he had come once a week for forty years.

Some of them stood outside the theatre a long time after the show was over, watching workmen fence off the front of the building, wondering what they would be doing for entertainment this time next week. A comedian later bemoaned the loss of jobs. "Vote for Collins," he said. "He can, turn anything into a parking lot."

Vaudeville, one of American's most conscientiously pursued art forms, has been squashed from the culture of greater Boston; but no one, after all, can stand in the way of progress. Not even in a G-String.

Ramp Scurriers

The Casino stage-successor to the Howard where "Buffalo Bill" Cody, John Wilkes Booth and Gypsy Rose Lee performed for beyond a century--has been the scene of the most riotous productions in staid New England history. Across the Casino ramp have scurried some of the best-set headliners of latter day burlesque, in some of their least-dressed performances.

Turnpoint Storm, Sabra Samarr, The Turkish Delight, Sally the Shape, and Patti Wayne. The Devil's Mistress, have headed Casino play-mile is days gone by. Irma the Body has peeled her way through the theatre be many occasions. And Candy Barr, now one of the star attractions of the annual Huntsville Prison Rodeo at the Texas State Penitentiary, first came to the Casino as an unknown novice.

SRO for Swan Song

The show Saturday night was hardly the most raucous on Casino record, but compared with traditionally devout audience participation, it made a fitting "Swan Song." The house was packed for one of the few times in the manager's recollection. Box seats which usually go unsold were filled early, and when the first attractions scampered into the spotlight there was standing room only.

Choruses of "Pop Goes the Wessel," "Coming Through the Rye," "Smoke Gets in Your Eyes," and several varieties of the Twist ushered the acts into the areas, where they received the shouts of "Take it off." (Or, in the case of one rather hefty near-middle-aged stripper, "Put it back on.")

The male performers, as is often their lot, were not much apreciated. A steel guitar player who doubled on the banjo got some support for "Heart of My Heart," but had to abandon the stage after the first verse of "My Old Kentucky Home."

A Joke

When the lines of the burty-gas man could be heard above the impatient shouts and floor-stomping, they came out in rare form:

"We'll walk into the woods," a lecherous old man tells a female companion, "and I'll show you where the butterflies make butter."

Short sayings often concerned with socially unacceptable behavior were showered down on comedians and peelers indiscriminately. The audience, one performer said after the show, "was just like any other night." Teen-agers glanced furtively around, making certain that no one they knew saw them; one old man called the burlesque his "homestead" where he had come once a week for forty years.

Some of them stood outside the theatre a long time after the show was over, watching workmen fence off the front of the building, wondering what they would be doing for entertainment this time next week. A comedian later bemoaned the loss of jobs. "Vote for Collins," he said. "He can, turn anything into a parking lot."

Vaudeville, one of American's most conscientiously pursued art forms, has been squashed from the culture of greater Boston; but no one, after all, can stand in the way of progress. Not even in a G-String.

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