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  • Film, Video
    Crissie Sheridan
    Serpentine dance in national colors
    A woman in a white gown performs a skirt dance, using her arms to produce circles and other patterns within the folds of her costume. Her legs and feet appear to be bare.
    • Contributor: Sheridan, Crissie - Thomas A. Edison, Inc - Paper Print Collection (Library of Congress) - Heise, William
    • Date: 1897
  • Film, Video
    Charity ball A man in formal dinner clothes and a woman in a white ruffled dress with a flower corsage and white shoes execute various dance steps designed as exhibition dancing. The set is bare, without backdrops or props. The couple's feet are not evident at times in the frame, and the dance appears to have been shot in relatively slow motion.
    • Contributor: Heise, William - Thomas A. Edison, Inc - Paper Print Collection (Library of Congress) - Kelley, James T. - Kent, Dorothy - Niver (Kemp) Collection (Library of Congress)
    • Date: 1897
  • Film, Video
    Bicycle trick riding, no. 2
    Bicycle trick riding
    Opens with a man riding a bicycle in a backwards circle, on a stage with a painted backdrop of a city street. He dismounts, then remounts the cycle and rides in a forwards circle, pausing and balancing for a moment as he rears up and spins the front wheel. Continuing in the circle, the man moves in front of the handlebars and continues pedaling ...
    • Contributor: Neidert - Thomas A. Edison, Inc - Paper Print Collection (Library of Congress) - White, James H. (James Henry) - Neidert, Eugene A. - Niver (Kemp) Collection (Library of Congress)
    • Date: 1899
  • Film, Video
    Turkish dance, Ella Lola A young, dark-haired woman performs a period "Oriental" dance (commonly known as a belly dance) with some Turkish styling. She performs distinctive dance movements that include shoulder shimmies with pelvic movements and several foot patterns, side traveling movements with pelvic circles, a slow pelvic circle and a front pelvic lock, and paddle turns with various arm gestures. Her dance costume consists of a two-layered ...
    • Contributor: Lola, Ella - Thomas A. Edison, Inc - Paper Print Collection (Library of Congress)
    • Date: 1898
  • Film, Video
    Sandow
    Sandow (no breathing)
    Strong-man Eugene (Eugen) Sandow poses in a long shot on a bare stage against a black background, wearing only tight trunks and laced sandals. He begins with his arms folded against his chest, looking off screen left, then strikes a variety of poses that accentuate his muscular development. These positions include flexing his right arm with the fist to his head and face to ...
    • Contributor: Sandow, Eugen - American Mutoscope Company - Paper Print Collection (Library of Congress)
    • Date: 1896
  • Film, Video
    The serenaders Opens on a stage set of a two-story brick building. Two street serenaders in rather shabby clothes stand outside the building, one playing a trombone and the other what appears to be a clarinet. A young woman appears in the upstairs window and looks down smiling on the two suitors. She soon favors and encourages the trombonist by throwing kisses and clutching her chest, ...
    • Contributor: Bitzer, G. W. - American Mutoscope and Biograph Company - Paper Print Collection (Library of Congress)
    • Date: 1899
  • Film, Video
    Arabian gun twirler A bearded man performs a rifle twirling act on a stage with a painted backdrop of a city street corner. He wears a white turban and a dark two-piece costume of tunic and baggy pants that narrow at the knees; perhaps the costume of an Arab infantryman. The tricks he performs include throwing the spinning rifle in the air and catching it; twirling the ...
    • Contributor: Cheriff, Hadji - Thomas A. Edison, Inc - Paper Print Collection (Library of Congress) - Niver (Kemp) Collection (Library of Congress)
    • Date: 1899
  • Film, Video
    Dancing darkey boy / Catalog Record - Electronic Resource Available In this outside scene, a small African American boy--dressed in a cap, leggings, and suit with short pants--dances on a table or other flat, raised surface. Surrounding and encouraging him with hand claps is a group of men, dressed in a variety of styles, from shirtsleeves and caps to suits and hats, with one gentleman in a formal suit and top hat. Visible in ...
    • Contributor: Heise, William - Thomas A. Edison, Inc - Paper Print Collection (Library of Congress)
    • Date: 1897
  • Film, Video
    Ella Lola, a la Trilby
    Ella Lola, a la Trilby [dance]
    A young, dark-haired woman performs a dance inspired by George du Maurier's character Trilby, in an early modern dance style reminiscent of Isadora Duncan. She dances barefoot without stockings and is dressed in a long, flowing gown bound across the bosom in Grecian style, with inside fringe and a draped cape hooked to her wrist. She also wears what appears to be a garland ...
    • Contributor: Lola, Ella - Thomas A. Edison, Inc - Paper Print Collection (Library of Congress) - White, James H. (James Henry) - Heise, William
    • Date: 1898
  • Film, Video
    2 a.m. in the subway
    Two a.m. in the subway
    Opens on a set of a subway platform, with two tracks on either side and stairs leading up to the exit. A policeman stretches and wearily sits on a box or crate, as a uniformed conductor awaits a train. A subway car arrives on the left side of the platform and the conductor opens the door. A well-dressed man with a cigar in his ...
    • Contributor: Bitzer, G. W. - American Mutoscope and Biograph Company - Paper Print Collection (Library of Congress)
    • Date: 1905
  • Collection
    American Variety Stage: Vaudeville and Popular Entertainment, 1870-1920 This collection illustrates the vibrant and diverse forms of popular entertainment, especially vaudeville, that thrived from 1870-1920. Included are 334 English- and Yiddish-language playscripts, 146 theater playbills and programs, 61 motion pictures, 10 sound recordings and 143 photographs and 29 memorabilia items documenting the life and career of Harry Houdini. Groups of theater posters and additional sound recordings will be added to this anthology ...
    • Contributor: Library of Congress. National Digital Library Program
    • Date: 1996

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