John Cecil Carden

Jump to navigation Jump to search

John Cecil Carden (18**-19**) was an amateur actor.


John Cecil Carden, who worked for a firm of wholesalers in Port Elizabeth, played a leading part in Port Elizabeth's amateur theatrical productions between the end of the 19th and early 20th centuries. He later moved with his wife and five daughters, to Burgersdorp. He was the manager of the very first Springbok rugby team to tour overseas (to England) from 1906–07. He was a keen yachtsman and President of the Zwartkops Rowing Club from 1910 until 1911.

Contribution to SA theatre, film, media and/or performance

1892: Carden was the stage manager almost every production since the first performances of the Port Elizabth Amateur Operatic Club in 1892.

1892: Starred in the first production of The Mikado.

1895: Starred in the The Yeoman of the Guard.

1906: Arranged a mock battle depicting the siege of Port Arthur during the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-5 on the Swartkops River in honour of the MCC's (Marylebone Cricket Club) visit to South Africa between December 1905 and March 1906. Two rowing boats were converted in "battleships" and a "fort" on the opposite bank of the river was built and "bombarded" during the show which was attended by many Port Elizabeth residents who especially made the trip to see it.

July 15-21, 1908: Carden was the stage manager and a member of the committee for the performances of The Yeoman of the Guard and The Mikado at the Port Elizabeth Opera House which were staged as entertainment for the visiting English rugby teams participating in the South African Rugby Tournament. Carden acted in both productions.

(circa 1908?): Carden served on the committee which arranged a charity show in the Feather Market Hall called Olympia.

Awards, etc

Carden Street, Redhouse, named after him.


Adam Brand's Diary, Evening Post, Thursday, February 25, 1971.

Go to ESAT Bibliography

Return to

Return to ESAT Personalities A

Return to South African Theatre Personalities

Return to The ESAT Entries

Return to Main Page