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Will Evans, The Musical Eccentric

Music hall chairs: impressive acrobatics in a Victorian music hall act

Comedy 1899 1 mins Silent


There's some impressive acrobatics in this filmed music hall act capturing celebrated performer Will Evans. This is one of the oldest surviving of a significant number of films that preserve successful music hall acts, dating from a period when film was intimately connected with the music halls - where films would be shown as part of a mixed variety bill.

Will Evans was a comic performer in the circus and pantomime tradition (eccentric in this case meaning acrobatic). He also sang, danced and played - several of his sound recordings survive - and wrote for theatre. He co-wrote the stage farce 'Tons of Money', which was filmed in 1924. His father, Fred Evans, was a celebrated pantomime performer, while Will's nephew, another Fred, was the comedian known for his 1910s film character 'Pimple'.