J. J. Dallas as King Paramount in Utopia, Limited

J. J. Dallas (1891-94, 1894-95, 1898-99)

[Born Soho, London, 4 Apr 1853, died London 24 Aug 1915]

After gaining experience in provincial stock companies, as a vocalist, and on the variety stage, John Joseph Dallas made his London debut in 1878 in von Suppe's Fatinitza at the Alhambra.He was soon engaged by John Hollingshead, who was stockpiling low comedians for the Gaiety Theatre, in 1880. Dallas appeared in many Gaiety productions during the next several years, notably The Forty Thieves (1880-81), Aladdin (1881-82), and F. C. Burnand's Bluebeard (1883), all of which were huge money-spinners.

Dallas performed in productions at the Avenue and the Prince of Wales's from 1885 to 1888, before returning to the Gaiety with August Van Biene's Company in Faust Up-to-Date in 1889.He appeared in a Cinderella pantomime in Manchester for Christmas 1889, and then toured with his own company in Little Jack Sheppard in 1890.

In August 1891 he was engaged by D'Oyly Carte to replace Rutland Barrington as Punka, the Rajah of Chutneypore, in The Nautch Girl at the Savoy. The next month Dallas was in turn replaced by W. S. Penley at the Savoy, but joined Carte's touring "D" Company where he played Punka until the tour ended in December 1891."D" Company was back on tour in March 1892, this time with Dallas playing the title role in a newly revised version of The Vicar of Bray. Haddon Hall was added to the tour

in December 1892, and Dallas played the Vicar and Rupert Vernon until the tour ended in December 1893.

He next traveled to America with Carte's American Utopia Limited Company, playing the role of King Paramount I in New York and Boston (March-June 1894). Returning to Great Britain later that year, he left the D'Oyly Carte briefly to appear in The Lady Slavey at London's Avenue Theatre, but rejoined Carte's "D" Company when The Vicar of Bray was restored to the repertoire in November 1894. Once more cast in the title role, he played the Vicar until January 1895 when he again left the Company.

Dallas returned to the London Stage, appearing at the Avenue in The New Barmaid (1896), and the Shaftesbury in The Wizard of the Nile (1897). He rejoined the D'Oyly Carte organization once more, touring with "D" Company from December 1898 to September 1899 as the Vicar, Rupert Vernon, and King Ouf in The Lucky Star.

In 1900 he appeared in Charles Hoyt's A Parlour Match at Terry's Theatre in London. After visiting Australia in 1906, he returned to London in Nelly Neil at the Aldwych in 1907. In 1909, he toured The J. P. and Our Flat, and at Christmas 1909 appeared at the Shakespeare Theatre, Clapham, as Widow Niblick in Goody Two-Shoes.

A versatile entertainer, he continued to perform in music hall sketches until his death in 1915. He also wrote a musical comedy, One of the Girls (Grand Theatre, Birmingham, 1896), and a Christmas pantomime, Jack and Jill and the Fairy Rill (Palace Theatre of Varieties, Manchester, 1897).

Page modified November 23, 2007 © 2001-07 David Stone