The Whip (play)

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The Whip is a melodrama by Henry Hamilton and Cecil Raleigh, first performed in 1909 at the Drury Lane Theatre in London. The play's original production had intricate scenery and spectacular stage effects, including a horse race and a train crash. The production would tour overseas and inspire a 1917 film by the same name.

Tallulah Bankhead offers a reminiscence of attending The Whip (at the Manhattan Opera House) as a child:

The Whip was a blood-and-thunder melodrama in four acts and fourteen scenes imported from London's Drury Lane Theatre. It boiled with villainy and violence. Its plot embraced a twelve-horse race on a treadmill (for the Gold Cup at Newmarket), a Hunt Breakfast embellished by fifteen dogs, an auto-smash-up, the Chamber of Horrors at Madame Tussaud's Waxworks, and a train wreck with a locomotive hissing real steam. It boasted a dissolute earl and a wicked marquis, and a heroine whose hand was sought by both knave and hero. It was a tremendous emotional dose for anyone as stage-struck and impressionable as our heroine. [1]


  1. ^ Bankhead, Tallulah (2004). Tallulah:My Autobiography. University Press of Mississippi. ISBN 978-1-57806-635-3.  p. 39.

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