Colorful and boisterous first nights were the rule in New York theaters of the 1880s. Everyone, it seemed, attended, from the rich and powerful to young people who scraped together just enough to buy a ticket. And no star was more popular than Lillian Russell. At a time when serious plays dominated the stages, Lillian Russell was one of the first to popularize musical theater. With her beauty, voice, and grace, she was the symbol of the new American woman. She used those attributes to attain power, social status and wealth, and then to become one of the earliest champions of women's equality. Her life and career are covered here in detail, with particular emphasis on the way she influenced theater history and popular culture.
About the Author
The late Armond Fields was a social historian specializing in American popular theater. The author of numerous books about vaudeville and other early theater figures, he lived in Culver City, California.