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Stan Laurel and Other Stars of the Panopticon: The Story of the Britannia Music Hall Paperback – 1 Oct 2007


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Product details

  • Paperback: 180 pages
  • Publisher: Birlinn Ltd; 1st edition (1 Oct. 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 184158617X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1841586175
  • Product Dimensions: 1.3 x 14 x 21 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 615,077 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Judith Bowers has worked for many years as an archaeologist, and later as a Glasgow historian. She created a children's history series called Scary Scotland, broadcast on STV in 1998 as part of the children's programme Skoosh, for which she wrote and presented seven episodes. She first discovered the building in 1997 and from that moment has made it her mission to bring Britannia Panopticon back to life. In 1998 she assisted in the research and presentation of a documentary on Britannia Panopticon for the series Arteries. She is secretary of the Britannia Music Hall Trust.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By richteafinger on 11 July 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A really interesting book. The Stan Laurel stuff was a bit misleading, as it sounds as though he didn't do much at the Britannia, so i suppose it was a marketing ploy to get folk to buy the book and if its Stan you're interetsed in this book is not really worth it. But I did not buy the book for Stan. I bought it to find out about the Britannia - punters, acts, owners, and the context of working class entertainment in the public health disaster zone that was 19th Century Glasgow. IN this regard, the book is a bit weak. Overall, it's an interesting acount of the Britannia's most well known artistes and charts the gradual decline of a working class entertainment venue pretty well (if rather simply). Personally I wanted more pictures, and some more of the 19thC Glasgow social context (what a terrifying place 19thC Glasgow must have been.) Overall its worth buying, and is written with passion and enthusiasm.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 26 Jun. 2011
Format: Paperback
Judith Bowers has written a very entertaining book that traces the history of the Britannia Panopticon Music Hall. It also contains brief biographies of the stars that appeared there, including a very young Stan Laurel.

The Panopticon had a mix of everything; variety shows, zoos, freak shows, novelty acts and in the last few years of its productive life, it became a cinema.

The book not only describes the Panopticon, it also traces the history of the music halls in Glasgow, detailing what life was like in the city during those times.

Judith has worked hard over the years to find funding to restore the Panopticon and her dedication to the project is now paying dividends. Some restoration work has been undertaken already. You will enjoy this very well-written book.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
In my first year of University I had to do a project about this fantastic building and as part of my research I bought this book.

What a treat it was!

It is so vividly written that you can imagine being in the crowd at a show in the theatres heyday filled with people, smoke, noise and laughter.

It doesn't linger too long on any one element or time period which I appreciated as that could have slowed down the pacing of the book.

Personally I can't get my head around the idea that this fantastic building is just sitting in Glasgow with people walking past it every day and taking no notice of it.

As part of my Uni work I had the pleasure of visiting the building and meeting the author of this book which was really cool and having read the book really enhanced my enjoyment of my visit.

Recommend if you have a passion for local/social history.
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