American Vaudeville Museum

All material © 1998-2010 American Museum of Vaudeville, Inc.  Page 15

Eva Le Galliene

1899 — 1981


The most serious of all the great ladies of the American Theatre of the Twentieth Century, Eva turned to performing in vaudeville twice. Once in the early 1930s when there was still big-time vaudeville and again in the late 1930s when she was one of three or four acts preceding the major event—a feature motion movie. Ms. Le Gallienne also performed in two vaudeville revues, the first in 1919 as a cast member in Elsie Janis and Her Gang. Twenty years later she rejoined Elsie in Frank Fay Vaudeville, which also starred Smith & Dale and featured strip-teaser, Maxine de Shone.

Eva Le Gallienne was a biographer of her friend and mentor Eleanor Duse, and a friend to Sara Bernhardt, Constance Collier, Alla Nazimova and Margaret Webster, all titans of the theatre. Eva founded the Civic Repertory Theatre, translated and adapted plays from other languages, directed, designed and acted. She was a champion of Ibsen and Chekhov.