Photos courtesy of the Fryer Library
from the Theatre Magazine October 1915.

Hugh Huxham Hugh Huxham i(A105401 works by)
Gender: Male
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Australian variety entertainer, company leader, producer, director, businessman, councillor.

Born in Victoria, Hugh Huxham began his career in the Australian variety theatre industry around 1900, and was initially billed as Hughie Huxham the tenor balladist. After finding solo opportunities with such companies as Verto's Biotint Entertainment and Variety Company and F. M. Clark's New Folly Company (ca. 1905-1906), he eventually gained the attention of Harry Rickards with The Hamonious Huxhams, which included his wife Edith and her brother. The trio remained together for two years (ca. 1909-1911), largely playing the Rickards's and Fullers' Theatres circuits, along with a tour of China and the Far East for Ramos and Ramos. In 1911, Huxham formed the Serenaders, the company with which his name is primarily associated. After its debut season in Brisbane at the Empire Theatre, the troupe toured Australia and New Zealand for the next decade or more, with few breaks. They also returned to the Far East in 1914, with an eighteen-week tour of the Bandmann circuit.

In addition to his on-stage role as singer, comedian, and actor, Huxham managed the Serenaders business affairs, directed the performances, and arranged and scored the vocal harmonies for most of the songs.

Among the other variety organisations to have secured the services of Huxham's Serenaders were Harry Rickards' Tivoli Theatres, Holland and St John (Brisbane), John N. McCallum (Brisbane), Birch Carroll and Coyle (Queensland), Dix and Baker (Newcastle), and Cedric Johnson (St Kilda).

After disbanding the Serenaders in 1926, Huxham returned to Victoria and settled in the Healesville district, sixty kilometres north-east of Melbourne. In 1929 he was appointed to the position of Melbourne producer for the newly-founded and privately-owned Australian Broadcasting Company. In the the 1930s he turned entrepreneurial skills towards a business career and eventually succeeded in becoming a local councillor. A 1939 interview records that he and his wife were also the leaders of an amateur theatrical society in Healesville, which worked to raise funds for the local community ('Old Cremorne Leader in Brisbane Again' Brisbane Courier 17 July 1939, p.2).

Most Referenced Works



    1.1. Variety entertainer, singer, costume designer. Born Edith Maitland in South Australia.


    2.1. Hugh and Edith Huxham directed a production of The Orchid at the Moonee Ponds Town Hall (Victoria) for the Essendon Operatic and Choral Society, 14 to16 June 1930 (Age 16 June 1930, p.12).

  • 3. ENGAGEMENTS CHRONOLOGY - 1905-1930:

    1905: 8 July - * ; Queen's Hall, Sydney [Hugh Huxham] / ca. 23-31 December ; Cremorne Gardens, Charters Towers ['Hughie' Huxham].

    1906: ca. January ; Cremorne Gardens, Charters Towers ['Hughie Huxham'] / ca. August-September* ; Victoria Theatre, Newcastle [Hugh Huxham].

      • Entries for the period ca. 1909-early 1911 are for the Harmonious Huxhams unless otherwise noted.

    1910: ca. 26 February - April* ; Opera House, Melbourne / ca. 16 July - * ; Tivoli Theatre, Sydney / ca. 22 October - ca. 10 December ; Opera House, Melbourne / ca. 17-31 December ; Tivoli Theatre, Sydney.

    1911: ca. December ; Empire Theatre, Brisbane.

    1912: ca. January - February ; Empire Theatre, Brisbane / 10 August - ca. October ; Empire Theatre, Brisbane.

      • See Huxham's Serenaders entry for details of Hugh and Edith Huxham's career movements between ca. October/November 1912 and 1926.

    1930: 14 June - * ; Town Hall, Moonee Ponds, Victoria [The Orchid - Essendon Operatic and Choral Society].

  • Entries connected with this record have been sourced from historical research into Australian-written music theatre and film conducted by Dr Clay Djubal.
Last amended 17 Nov 2016 07:51:49
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