Fred Woodward: What an Animal

You never here of these kind of actors except in blogs

(Travalanche)

Today we corral vaudeville animal impersonator Fred Woodward (1882-1960).

Yes animal impersonation was a whole sub-specialty in vaudeville! Other animal impersonators we have profiled on Travalanche have included Alfred Latell (best known as Bonzo the Bull Pup) and Will Ferry the Human Frog. This was an era when fairy tales were frequently presented on stage for audiences of children and their families, so it’s not as odd as it may seem at first blush. Woodward’s best known specialty was probably mules, but his repertoire also included parrots, ostriches, frogs, storks, owls, alligators, a teddy bear, and the G.O.P. Elephant!

Originally from Toronto, Woodward worked the big time Orpheum circuit as an opening act for a number of years, before he began to crack musical comedy. He appeared in the Broadway show Mamzelle Champagne (1906), the Ziegfeld Follies of 1912, the touring edition of Weber and Fields’Roly Poly (1912)…

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