John Drew made his stage debut in 1875, but he did not play Shakespeare until he joined Augustin Daly's company at Daly's Fifth Avenue Theatre. During his years with Daly--1875 until 1892--he played in Hamlet, Othello, Richard II, The Merchant of Venice, King Lear, As You Like It, The Merry Wives of Windsor, A Midsummer Night's Dream, and Love's Labor's Lost. His last performance in Shakespeare was as Benedick in Much Ado About Nothing in 1913.

Drew came from a distinguished family of actors; his mother and father, both performers, owned the Arch Street Theatre in Philadelphia where their son John had his first performance. His sister, Georgiana, married Maurice Barrymore, and thus two "royal" families of the stage were united. The children of Maurice and Georgiana were Lionel, Ethel, and John, all great actors in their own right. John Barrymore, incidentally, gave New York City a Hamlet that was the sensation of 1922.

We still hear echoes of the family names in the next generation with John Drew Barrymore, and then in the next with his daughter, Drew Barrymore.

John Drew
(1853-1927)                                                              
a studio postcard

a studio postcard

a studio postcard

a studio postcard

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