Ethel Barrymore

D.O.B: Aug 15, 1879 | Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.

17Credit Score

Ethel Barrymore was the second of three children seemingly destined for the actors life of their parents Maurice and Georgiana. Maurice Barrymore had emigrated from England in 1875, and after graduating from Cambridge in law had shocked his family by becoming an actor.

Biography

Ethel Barrymore was the second of three children seemingly destined for the actors life of their parents Maurice and Georgiana. Maurice Barrymore had emigrated from England in 1875, and after graduating from Cambridge in law had shocked his family by becoming an actor. Georgiana Drew of Philadelphia acted in her parents stage company. The two met and married as members of Augustin Dalys company in New York. They both acted with some of the great stage personalities of the mid Victorian theater of America and England. The Barrymore children were born and grew up in Philadelphia. Though older brother Lionel Barrymore began acting early with his mothers relatives in the Drew theater company, Ethel, after a traditional girls schooling, planned on becoming a concert pianist. The lure of the stage was perhaps congenital, however. She made her debut as a stage actress during the New York City season of 1894. Her youthful stage presence was at once a pleasure, a strikingly pretty and winsome face and large dark eyes that seemed to look out from her very soul. Her natural talent and distinctive voice only reinforced the physical presence of someone destined to command any role set before her. After the opportunity to appear on the London stage with English great Henry Irving in The Bells (1897) and later in Peter the Great (1898), she returned to New York to star in the Clyde Fitch play Captain Jinks of the Horse Marines (1901) (produced by her friend and benefactor Charles Frohman), which brought her initial American acclaim.