My Old Man: A Personal History Of Music Hall

Paperback | October 28, 2013

byJohn Major

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The former Prime Minister takes a remarkable journey into his family past to tell the richly colourful story of the British music hall in this Theatre Book Prize-shotlisted history.

Music hall was one of the glories of Victorian England. Sentimental, vulgar, class-conscious, but always patriotic and on the side of the underdog, it held a mirror to the audiences' hopes and fears, and sometimes the general absurdity of life.

Vast, smoke-filled auditoriums were packed night after night in nearly every town and city in Britain. The most popular performers, such as Marie Lloyd, Vesta Tilley and George Robey, were among the highest paid and most celebrated figures in the land.

This was the world that John Major's father Tom entered at the age of twenty-one as a comedian and singer. In My Old Man, the former prime minister uses his father's story as a springboard for telling the entertaining history of the music hall, from its origins in Elizabethan times through to its heyday in the nineteenth century and eventual decline with the rise of radio and cinema in the twentieth century.

Packed with colourful anecdotes about the great performers of the day, this warm-hearted history conjures up a lost age.

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From the Publisher

The former Prime Minister takes a remarkable journey into his family past to tell the richly colourful story of the British music hall in this Theatre Book Prize-shotlisted history.Music hall was one of the glories of Victorian England. Sentimental, vulgar, class-conscious, but always patriotic and on the side of the underdog, it held ...

Format:PaperbackDimensions:448 pages, 7.88 × 5.13 × 1.15 inPublished:October 28, 2013Publisher:Harpercollins (uk)Language:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0007450141

ISBN - 13:9780007450145

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"In this rich, generous book, he never moralises but always celebrates . he sends in the clowns quite brilliantly, parading them before us all in all their extraordinariness. Wonderfully warm-hearted . compassionate . fascinating . Major nobly honours his parents and the life they lived in these pages . the affection is palpable" - GUARDIAN"Affectionate, charming and unexpectedly lively . Major paints a vivid picture . to read this richly enjoyable book is to be given a glimpse into a lost world" - MAIL ON SUNDAY"Entertaining and well-paced . My Old Man is a powerful and affecting tribute" - DAILY EXPRESS"His deep affection for his parents inspires his finest writing.fascinating . My Old Man is an entertaining and intriguing potted history, full of quirky details about this quintessentially English phenomenon" - INDEPENDENT"Entertaining, fascinating and written with love..the admiration that John feels for his father is palpable on every page" - SUNDAY EXPRESS