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The PekinThe Rise and Fall of Chicago's First Black-Owned Theater$
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Thomas Bauman

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780252038365

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252038365.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM ILLINOIS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.illinois.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Illinois University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ISO for personal use (for details see www.illinois.universitypressscholarship.com/page/privacy-policy).date: 11 December 2018

Tacking to the Wind

Tacking to the Wind

(p.67) 3. Tacking to the Wind
The Pekin

Thomas Bauman

University of Illinois Press

This chapter discusses the philosophy that Robert T. Motts had imprinted on the Pekin Theater and how it resonated with George Walker's belief in the possibilities for the growth and maturation of black theater as a special case of racial development and acceptance. From start to finish, Motts remained an entrepreneur ideologically committed to the doctrine of economic success as the surest engine of racial uplift. He left artistic aspirations in the hands of the Pekin Stock Company, and this meant primarily those of J. Ed. Green. This chapter describes the musical comedies served up at the Pekin and the Columbia Theater between September 1907 and May 1908, including The Isle of Pines and Peanutville, along with the operetta The Merry Widow. It also considers the battle among seven vaudeville and movie houses at The Stroll, an entertainment district on Chicago's South State Street.

Keywords:   musical comedies, Robert T. Motts, Pekin Theater, George Walker, black theater, racial uplift, Pekin Stock Company, Columbia Theater, The Merry Widow, The Stroll

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