Marie Lloyd

Marie Lloyd was an English music hall singer, comedian and musical theatre actress. She was known for her use of innuendo and double entendre during her performances. During the First World War, in common with most other music hall artists, she supported recruitment into the armed services to help the war effort. In later life, she was still in demand at music halls and had a late success in 1919 with her performance of ‘My Old Man’

About Marie Lloyd in brief

Summary Marie LloydMarie Lloyd was an English music hall singer, comedian and musical theatre actress. She was known for her use of innuendo and double entendre during her performances. During the First World War, in common with most other music hall artists, she supported recruitment into the armed services to help the war effort. In later life, she was still in demand at music halls and had a late success in 1919 with her performance of “My Old Man “, which became one of her most popular songs. Lloyd had a turbulent private life that was often the subject of press attention: she was married three times, divorced twice, and frequently found herself giving court testimony against two of her husbands who had physically abused her. In 1922, she gave her final performance at the Alhambra Theatre, London, during which she became ill on stage. She died a few days later at the age of 52. Lloyd was born on 12 February 1870 in Hoxton, London. Her father, John Wood, was an artificial flower arranger and waiter; her mother, Matilda Mary Caroline née Archer, was a dressmaker and costume designer. Lloyd enjoyed entertaining her family and decided to form a minstrel act in 1879 called the Fairy Bell troupe. Along with her sister Alice, she arranged events in which the Wood children performed at the family home. Lloyd and the troupe made their début at a mission in Nile Street, Hoxton in 1880 and followed this with an appearance at the Blue Ribbon Gospel Temperance Mission later the same year.

In 1885, she had success with her song “The Boy I Love Is Up in the Gallery”, and she frequently topped the bill at prestigious theatres in London’s West End. Between 1894 and 1900, she became an international success when she toured France, America, Australia and Belgium with her solo music hall act. In 1907, she assisted other performers during the music hall war and took part in demonstrations outside theatres, protesting for better pay and conditions for performers. Although her parents initially opposed the idea of her performing in her spare time, they couldn’t kick her off the stage as they could not kick their high-time as high as they were. She returned to the stage that evening and declared that she wanted a permanent career on the stage. Lloyd became known within the family circle as Tilley, and was known within her family as Matilda Alice Victoria Wood. She had a daughter, Alice, and a son, John, who died in a car crash in 1973. She is survived by her daughter Alice and her son John, as well as a son-in-law, David, who is now a director of the London Film and TV company, and her grandson, David Lloyd, who lives in New York. Lloyd is buried in St James’ Park in London, where she used to work as a waiter at the Eagle Tavern, where he worked as a table singer. She also had a son named David Lloyd.