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Grand Old Lady of the London stage, Ada Reeve, celebrated her eight- ieth birthday by lighting her usual cigar and signing a contract with the Players
No motion picture musi- cal star today is idolised as Sydney worshipped Ada de- cades ago. The original Tivoli paid her £500 a week. In the old town's night-life she flitted from champagne parties at Paris House to midnight sausages and-mashed at the "Cafe de Fairfax", the coffee-stall outside the "Herald" office.
In near-oblivion Ada was running a milk-bar for Hugh D. Mcintosh in Picca- dilly Circus until the blitz. When theatres re-opened she scored in a lucky engage- ment as a Cockney flower girl in J. B. Priestley's "They Came To A City".
Not one critic, who raved about Ada as a wartime dis- covery, remembered her as London's musical-comedy queen from a previous gene-
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Those shaggy characters you see walking with ob
vious gentlemen among the stately slums of Macleay Street are not drifters de- manding the price of a drink. They are well-known Sydney actors sprouting beards for "Long John Sil- ver"; and the gentry are acr tors, too, but out-of-work, begging Grant Taylor, Guy Doleman and Lloyd Burrell to put in a word for them with the producers when shooting starts to-morrow.
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There is a spot of legal bother for Robert Newton. Waiting for him when he returns to America from Australia is a Superior Court writ claiming 300,000 dollars for allegedly walking out on a British- production of "Trilby." He was cast as Svengali at £2750 sterling a week, opposite Hildegarde NefPs Trilby. The producers declare he stepped off the set after three weeks and wouldn't go back.