Irene Rooke

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Irene Rooke (1878 - June 14, 1958) was an English theater and motion picture actress from Bridport, Dorset, England.

Stage Actress

She was the daughter of a prominent London, England journalist. Rooke left boarding school in 1896 and went directly on the stage. Unlike many novices, she achieved quick success as an actress.

In 1897 she performed the role of Ophelia in Hamlet. Gordon Craig appeared in the title role. Rooke played the part of the Christian maiden, Mercia, in The Sign of the Cross. The play was adapted from the historical drama written byWilson Barrett. The production was staged at the 14th Street Theater in New York City, in October 1898. The entire company was composed of actors from the Lyric Theatre .

Rooke was in an original production of Quality Street prior to creating the character of the charwoman in The Silver Box. The latter was the first John Galsworthy play to be produced. It was staged in 1906. Rooke is remembered for depicting characters who were quiet but valiant, misunderstood but uncomplaining.

She acted the part of Kate Hardcastle in the Ben Greet production of She Stoops To Conquer. Rooke's performance was well-received as was the character played by Julia Reynolds. They performed together on the Oberlin, Ohio stage, in March 1908. The Greet Company presented A Midsummer Night's Dream by William Shakespeare to audiences in La Crosse, Wisconsin, in 1909. Rooke trained under and toured with Greet. She also appeared in support of E.H. Sothern.

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