A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006. Now a Popeyes fast food restaurant on Google Maps.

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Entry from July 14, 2012
“That’s all there is—there isn’t any more!” (Broadway curtain-call speech)

Ethel Barrymore (1879-1959) was part of an acting family and was known as one of Broadway’s most famous actresses. The Ethel Barrymore Theatre is located at 243 West 47th Street in Manhattan. Barrymore was often requested by audiences to take curtain calls. He famous curtain-call line was “That’s all there is—there isn’t any more!”

According to entertainment columnist Sidney Skolsky in March 1931, the line comes from the play Sunday by Thomas Raceward that opened at New York’s Hudson Theatre on November 15, 1904. Barrymore was playing an eastern girl on a western ranch who was reading a letter from home. Her line, upon finishing a reading of the letter, was “That’s all there is—there isn’t any more.” Barrymore used the play’s line for her curtain calls.

“That’s all there is—there isn’t any more” became nationally popular in the 1920s and 1930s and was used in plays, movies and novels that did not include Barrymore herself.

Wikipedia: Ethel Barrymore
Ethel Barrymore (August 15, 1879 – June 18, 1959) was an American actress and a member of the Barrymore family of actors.
Ethel Barrymore was a highly regarded stage actress in New York City and a major Broadway performer. Many today consider her to be the greatest actress of her generation.
After she became a stage star, she would often dismiss adoring audiences who kept demanding curtain calls by saying “That’s all there is—there isn’t any more!” This became a popular catch phrase in the 1920s and 1930s. Many references to it can be found in the media of the period, including the Laurel and Hardy 1933 film Sons of the Desert, and Arthur Train’s 1930 Wall Street Crash novel Paper Profits.

Wikipedia: Ethel Barrymore Theatre
The Ethel Barrymore Theatre is a Broadway theatre located at 243 West 47th Street in midtown-Manhattan, named for actress Ethel Barrymore.

Internet Broadway Database
Play, Comedy
Setting: America and London
Written by Thomas Raceward.
Nov 15, 1904 - Jan 1905
Play / Original
Hudson Theatre, NY, USA

11 December 1919, The World-Herald (Omaha, NE), “Chorus girls throw pies at their hosts,” pg. 11, col. 2:
The story ends here. As Ethel Barrymore would say, “That’s all there is—there isn’t any more.” S’nuff?

15 February 1920, New York (NY) Times, “They Shall Not Pass; An Examination for the Theatrical Wiseacres”:
In what play did Ethel Barrymore say “That’s all there is—there isn’t any more”?

15 March 1931, Sunday World-Herald (Omaha, NE), “Broadway’s Gag Wars Exceed Its Gang Wars” by Sidney Skolsky, Magazine Section, pg. 5, cols. 4-5:
Practically every vaudevillian having to make an unexpected curtain speech will say: “That’s all there is—there isn’t any more.”

Ethel Barrymore, regardless of whether she appears in blackface and had plays; whether she is the first lady of theater or not, will go down into theatrical history as the originator of: “That’s all there is—there isn’t any more.”

From a Play That Failed.
It is generally thought that this best and most famous of all curtain speeches was first used by Miss Barrymore as a curtain speech. It wasn’t.

In 1905 Miss Barrymore appeared in a play called “Sunday” at the Hudson theater. One scene was on a western ranch and Miss Barrymore, playing the role of an eastern girl, had to read a letter from home. At the conclusion of the letter Miss Barrymore’s next line was: “That’s all there is—there isn’t any more.”

The line was part of the script written by Thomas Raceward. I don’t know who Mr. Racward is, but he hasn’t been represented on Broadway with a play since “Sunday,” and that play was no hit.

Ethel Barrymore remembered the line from the script and in later plays, when called upon to make a curtain speech, made it famous. But the unknown Thomas Raceward is the author.

Wikipedia: Madeline
Madeline is a children’s book series written by Ludwig Bemelmans, an Austrian author. The books have been adapted into numerous formats, spawning telefilms, television series and also into a live action feature film. The adaptations are famous for having the closing line, first uttered by actress Ethel Barrymore in a play: “That’s all there is; there isn’t any more.” The first book in the series, Madeline, was published in 1939. It proved to be a success, and Bemelmans wrote many sequels to the original during the 1940s and 1950s. The series continues to this day, written by Bemelmans’ grandson John Bemelmans-Marciano.

New York (NY) Times
June 19, 1959
Ethel Barrymore Is Dead at 79; One of Stage’s ‘Royal Family’
HOLLYWOOD, Calif., June 18—Ethel Barrymore, last of the trio known to Broadway and Hollywood as “The Royal Family” of acting, died here today of a heart ailment. She would have been 80 years old on Aug. 15.
Played in Noted Hits
Then, for a decade or more, she appeared in some of the hits of the day, including “Cousin Kate,” “Sunday,” “A Doll’s House,” “Alice Sit-by-the-Fire” and “The Silver Box.” It was for “Sunday” that Miss Barrymore came out on stage to quiet the thunderous applause and announced: “That’s all there is, there isn’t any more”—a line that became a part of the national language.

Google News Archive
21 June 1959, St. Joseph (MO) News-Press, “Ethel Barrymore” (editorial), pg. 8A, col. 2:
Ethel Barrymore’s rich contralto voice made her deliver her lines in velvety tones. Her most famous single line was spoken in the play “Sunday.” As a cue for the final curtain she said, “That’s all there is, there isn’t any more.” It became a national saying. And now it becomes an epitaph for this great lady of the theater.

The final curtain has fallen for Ethel Barrymore.

OCLC WorldCat record
The letter
Author: Gordon Jenkins; Judy Garland; John Ireland
Publisher: Hollywood, CA : Capitol Records, 1959.
Edition/Format:  Music LP : Musical revues & comedies : English
That’s all there is, there isn’t any more

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityMusic/Dance/Theatre/Film/Circus • (0) Comments • Saturday, July 14, 2012 • Permalink