by The West of England Folk Song
Conductor, Joseph Jenkins
Minstrelsy today is a rare thing-and more's the pity, for people are now far better versed in Negro music than they were generations ago. Yet to older listeners, with memories of Moore and Burgess, Sam Hagues , Mohawks, Matthews, and Co., minstrel programmes remain a favourite.
Minstrelsy in the past has played an important part in the history of the entertainment world. It originated in 1842 in the United States when E. P. Christy banded together four performers, the Virginia Serenaders, with extraordinary success. Music-hall enthusiasts will probably know that the great Eugene Stratton made his first appearance in England at the age of nineteen with Haverley's Mastodon Minstrels, with whom. he appeared in 1880 at His Majesty's Theatre.
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