The original text
First performed in the Théâtre du Gymnase, Paris, in 1869. Text published in Paris by Michel Levy Frères in 1870.
Translations and adaptations
Translated and adapted into English as "Frou Frou" by Augustin Daly (1838-1899) and first performed in the Fifth Avenue Theater, New York, on 15 February, 1870. Published in New York by Samuel French, c1870 as no CCCLIX of French's Standard Drama. Subtitled "A Comedy of Powerful Human Interest".
Another version, entitled Fou-Frou, or A School for Levity was written by Benjamin Webster (the Younger), and first performed in the Brighton Theatre, on 14 March 1870 and at the St James Theatre, London on 14 April, 1870 (now renamed Frou-Frou, or Fashion and Passion.
Many film versions were made over the years, including a 1914 silent film by Eugene Moore; Frou-Frou, directed by Alfredo De Antoni (Italy, 1918), Frou-Frou directed by Otto Rippert (Germany, 1922), Frou-Frou directed by Guy du Fresnay (France, 1924); Frou-Frou directed by Augusto Genina (1955, Italy), etc.
Performance history in South Africa
According to Boonzaier (1923), initially there was some public disapproval of the play's content on moral grounds, but it nevertheless had a number of performances in Cape Town.
1892: The English version (now specifically credited to Webster) performed by Potter-Bellew Company under the auspices of Luscombe Searelle, as part of their repertoire while on tour in South Africa. They played the piece at the Exhibition Theatre, during their sojourn in Cape Town.
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