Thomas Brazier

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Thomas Brazier (??-1871) was an actor active in Cape Town and Port Elizabeth in the 1860s.

Also billed as T. Brazier or Mr Brazier on occasion.

Biography

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

He was a performer for Clara Tellett and her company in the early 1860s.

With the demise of Mrs Tellett's company in 1862, Brazier, who stayed on in Cape Town owing to the pregnancy of his wife, began (unsuccessfully as it happens) seeking work as a tutor, teacher of elocution, corresponding clerk, or any other suitable employment, became the lessee of The Round House in Camps Bay, where the child was born in May of 1863. Brazier ran the property as a restaurant and entertainment venue, and by the start of 1864 he was advertising it as The Round House Hotel. On 4 April he also tried his hand at lecturing at a presentation of Harper's Diorama of Holland and the Rhine in the Theatre Royal, but his eccentric and uninformed presentations led to his dismissal.

Returning to the safer ground of play-readings and straight theatre, he a presented a series of Dramatic Readings, appearing every alternate Monday in the Cape Town City Hall between 4 July and 7 November of 1864. The seven plays in the series were Knowles's The Hunchback, Bulwer-Lytton's The Lady of Lyons and five plays by Shakespeare: Hamlet, The Merchant of Venice, Romeo and Juliet, King John and Much Ado about Nothing.

Besides the readings he also produced and performed in a few plays at the Theatre Royal, Cape Town, in 1864, among them Still Waters Run Deep (Taylor), Loving Too Fast, or A Twelve Month's Honeymoon (Troughton), The Turned Head (Beckett), Time Tries All (Courtney) and The Irish Post (Planché).

On 12 December there was a farewell for the Braziers, who were leaving for Port Elizabeth to continue their careers there.

Sources

F.C.L. Bosman, 1928. Drama en Toneel in Suid-Afrika, Deel I: 1652-1855. Pretoria: J.H. de Bussy. [1]: pp.

F.C.L. Bosman. 1980. Drama en Toneel in Suid-Afrika, Deel II, 1856-1916. Pretoria: J.L. van Schaik: pp. 188-190,

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