Thursday, April 5, 2012

Ooh la la! Anna Held!

"For a generation America succumbed to the Anna Held craze. There were Anna Held corsets, facial powders, pomades, Anna Held Girls, Anna Held eyes and even Anna Held cigars. She toured the country like a conqueror and no matter where her private car stopped, she had to step out on the observation platform and greet laborers and shop girls who waited since daybreak to catch a glimpse of her before reporting for work. Anna Held was the most buoyant and cheerful spirit that ever swept across the stage. To this day stage hands throughout America doff their hats at the mention of her name." ~~ Eddie Cantor in 1934

"The season before last it was Maude Adams; last season it was Mrs. Carter; and now it is Anna Held...Hitherto she has been regarded as a petted and spoiled child of the music hall - a piquant feather brain with no deep emotional substrata. But presto change! All at once she reveals herself as an artist of wide range and admiral skill!" ~~ newspaper critic in 1899

"Anna Held was a woman's favorite from the start. She was soft and winsome, with...the exuberant spirits and harmlessness of a playful white kitten. The harshness, audacity and strident assertiveness of the typical chantant singer did not enter into her method." ~~ newspaper critic in 1901

"I love to see 'Anna Held' in the papers. I read them every day just to discover if one mentions Anna Held. And if I do not find it I am no longer interested. The papers seem very dull if I do not see my name in them." ~~ Anna Held

"One moment I am all emotion, another is all sympathy, and then again I am just gay, and I am Anna Held." ~~ Anna Held

"There are few actresses of the day who understand as well as she how to get the best possible results from any given pose. Again and again she makes a posture of herself that an artist would be only too glad to paint could be have the opportunity." newspaper critic around 1905

"Stop crying hard times - get busy and you will do as well as Anna Held!" ~~ St. Louis newspaper  in 1907

"[Anna was] as piquant as ever, and as she was in splendid voice all her songs went with a vim. It is worth going miles to see her alone, but thanks to her liberal ways of doing things, she allowed others to share in the honors." ~ newspaper critic in 1908

"It seems to me that the whole tendency of modern fashion is not to make women beautiful, but only to martyr them. Big hats are not comfortable. Yet all women wear them. I myself have worse hats than anybody." ~~ Anna Held

"Why be jealous? It makes a woman ugly. If there is one who loves you truly he will love you without giving you anxiety; and if he is not of that sort...why give yourself trouble about him?" ~~ Anna Held

** All of the above quotes were taken from the book Anna Held and the Birth of Ziegfeld's Broadway  by Eve Golden **

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