What Happened to Jones (play)

What Happened to Jones is an 1897 farce by George Broadhurst. It was his first successful play and remained popular for many years, and was also adapted into three silent films.[1]

What Happened to Jones
Written by George Broadhurst
Date premiered 30 August 1897
Place premiered Manhattan Theatre
Original language English

Caricature of George C. Boniface, Jr. as Jones

. . . What Happened to Jones (play) . . .

What Happened to Jones was Broadhurst’s second play to be staged, after the flop of his first play, The Speculator (1896). Broadhurst had to become his own producer, with funding from his brother Thomas, as he could find no one else to take it on.

After four warmup performances in New Haven, Connecticut,[2][3][4][5] the play debuted on Broadway at the Manhattan Theatre on August 30, 1897.[6][7][8][9][10] It moved to the Bijou Theatre on October 4,[11] playing thru November 13,[12][13] and after a week off, played Thanksgiving week at the Grand Opera House.[14] That total run was just under 100 performances. The company then took it on tour.[15][16] A largely new cast returned to New York at the Bijou in February 1898.[17]

It had its London debut at The Strand on April 9, 1898,[18][19] and enjoyed a long run of 383 performances, and was the last success of John S. Clarke as manager of the Strand.[20] Charles Arnold starred in this production, and then successfully took it abroad, including to Australia and South Africa.[21][22]

In 1915, McClure’s magazine noted Broadhurst’s and Arnold’s success with the play, that Jones was still being played by stock houses some 18 years after its debut, and could be revived successfully on Broadway if Broadhurst was not so focused on new plays.[23]

In 2000, the Metropolitan Playhouse in New York mounted a revised version of the play with updated dialogue.[24]

. . . What Happened to Jones (play) . . .

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. . . What Happened to Jones (play) . . .