Boston Ideal Opera Company

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The Boston Ideal Opera Company, later The Bostonians, was a comic opera acting company based in Boston from 1879 through 1905.[1]


Effie Hinckley Ober (1843-1927) started the group in 1879 to perform an "ideal" production of H.M.S. Pinafore in Boston. It was a great success, and the company continued, and toured widely.

When the top actors later took over the group around 1887, it became "The Bostonians."

Actors in the group included: Henry Clay Barnabee,[2][3] Jessie Bartlett Davis, Mena Cleary, W.H. MacDonald, Eugene Cowles, Tom Karl, Marie Stone-MacDonald[4] Geraldine Ulmar and Alice Nielsen. Other actors in the group for spells included Camille D'Arville, Bertha Waltzinger, and Myron W. Whitney.[1][5] Other involved with the group included Kirke La Shelle.

Selected productions[edit]


  1. ^ a b Bordman, Gerald & Thomas S. Hischak. The Oxford Companion to American Theatre, p. 87 (3d ed 2004)
  2. ^ (17 December 1917). Henry Clay Barnabee Dies in his 85th Year, The New York Times
  3. ^ Reminiscences of Henry Clay Barnabee, The Scrap Book (1907)
  4. ^ A Hundred Years of Music in America, p. 234 (1889, 1900)
  5. ^ (29 August 1903). A Quarter Century of Existence, Town Talk