Viola Allen was born in Huntsville, Alabama. She first appeared in New York with John McCullough in Othello and Richard III. Her part as Gloria Quayle in Hall Caine’s The Christian, an adaptation for stage of his own novel, was so successful that from then on she was given “star” billing. Over the years she took parts in various Shakespeare plays: Twelfth Night, The Winter’s Tale, Cymbeline, and As You Like It. She played no more Shakespeare until 1915-16 when she went on tour as Lady Macbeth. Her last last part in Shakespeare was as Mistress Ford in The Merry Wives of Windsor in 1916.