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170th anniversary of George Croft’s Amphitheatre

Thomas Dowse's diary for April 1847. John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland

On April 26, 1847, one of Brisbane’s first theatres gave its opening performance. In advertisements published in the Moreton Bay Courier, Mr George Croft’s Amphitheatre, situated in Russell Street, South Brisbane promised a spectacular show.¬†George Croft, formerly of the Victoria Theatre in Sydney and Astley’s Royal Amphitheatre London, would perform numerous tightrope stunts including “an … Read more

‘The great apostle of physical culture’ arrives in Brisbane (1902)

Photograph of Sandow from Steele Rudd's magazine July 1906. John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland. Neg 147977

In October 1902, Brisbane theatre audiences were treated to two world-renowned acts. One was opera singer Nellie Melba, the other the man referred to as the father of modern bodybuilding, Eugen Sandow. Born Friedrich Muller in Prussia, Sandow had been touring Australia since July and garnering a great deal of publicity. On October 27, as … Read more