Fanny Raynor

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Fanny Raynor (fl 1860s-1870s) was a British actress.

Married to and business partner of Bennee, she was either billed as "Miss Fanny Raynor", or "Mrs Bennee"

Having broken rather acrimoniously with Sefton Parry, the Bennees now took off on their own with a scratch company, undertaking a 15 month tour of the Eastern Cape and the Orange Free State during the course of 1868-69, performing with the aid of local amateurs wherever they appeared. They ended back in Cape Town, where they presented a farewell benefit in Cape Town under the auspices of the Governor and the Freemasons in on 31 May, 1869. The bill consisted of Hamlet (Shakespeare), Personation or Fairly Taken In (Dieulafoy/Decamp) and How to Win a Widow (Allingham?).

They then left the Cape for the colonies in the East, for example visiting India and Australia . There they once more performed leading roles such as that of "Claude Melnotte" and "Pauline" in The Lady of Lyons (Bulwer-Lytton), "Hamlet" and "Ophelia" in Hamlet]] (Shakespeare) and "Petruchio" and "Katherine" in The Taming of the Shrew (Shakespeare) - none of these to great success, at least not in Melbourne it would appear.

As an actress she never seemed quite to live up to the publicity dispersed by the company. In Australia for example, the critic of The Advocate (10 August, 1872) said: "Miss Jaynor lacks animation, not possessing, as it seemed to us, the nervous character which is indispensable to a lady undertaking leading parts", a sentiment echoeing that of Boonzaier in Cape Town, South Africa.


"Public Amusements", The Advocate, Melbourne, Victoria: 10 Aug 1872 (Page 15), Trove[1]