Louisa Swanborough in 'The Loves of Arcadia'

Louisa Swanborough in 'The Loves of Arcadia'

A copy of this carte-de-visite appears in one of Queen Victoria's albums in the Royal Photograph collection at Windsor, where the production is identified as The Loves of Arcadia.

Various members of the Swanborough family leased the Strand during the 1860's, but at the time that this portrait was taken, in the spring of 1860, it was Miss Louisa Swanborough who was the actor-manager of the theatre.

She is probalby seen here in costume for Mary Elizabeth Braddon's first play The Loves of Arcadia (1860), which she produced and starred in. The piece was first performed at the Strand Theatre on 12 March 1860, and was reviewed the following day in the Times. "Loud and unanimous applause followed the termination of the piece, which comes as a pleasant contrast to the broad farce that has so much prevailed at the Strand during the absence of Miss Swanborough." The production was last advertised in the Times on 5 May 1860.

Louisa married the wealthy magistrate Major William Lyon and retired from the stage after the birth of their first child in 1862. After her retirement, her sister Ada became the star of the Strand.

Photographed by Camille Silvy of London in the Spring of 1860.


Code: 124413
© Paul Frecker 2023