"Genial toff, with monacle, holds passport aloft" is likely Richard Tauber

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Where: Unknown

Try to find the spot where the photographer was standing.

When: 01 January 1935

Try to find the date or year when this image was made.
An interesting photo from Mr Mason. Based on the description here, I am really looking forward to your musings on this one. Good luck.

This image was reversed (from the original catalogue orientation) as per comment below.

Based on other comments and investigations, we're fairly certain that this "toff" (as described in the catalogue notes) is probably Austrian tenor and film star Richard Tauber. If it is, it would likely push our catalogue range out to the 1930s, when Herr Tauber is known to have visited Ireland. Based on this there's a strong suggestion that the "passport" in question is actually an autograph book which he's signing for what may be gathered Irish fans....


Photographer: Thomas H. Mason

Collection: Mason Photographic Collection

Date: Catalogue gives "1890-1910", but may be mid 1930s

NLI Ref: M57/7

You can also view this image, and many thousands of others, on the NLI’s catalogue at catalogue.nli.ie

Info:

Owner: National Library of Ireland on The Commons
Source: Flickr Commons
Views: 10240
thomasholmesmason thomasmayne thomashmasonsonslimited lanternslides nationallibraryofireland monacle monocle toff genial men passport richardtauber fedora tenor austria autograph film fans celebrity papped possiblecataloguecorrection richarddenemy tauber

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  • profile

    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 13/May/2016 09:02:54

    I imagine he is a theatrical impresario who is auditioning the members of a 1930s Boy Band. Or not !

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    O Mac

    • 13/May/2016 09:08:45

    It certainly looks later than the 1910 upper date range. I think the image needs to be reversed re: breast pocket and blurred signage capitals...

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 13/May/2016 09:27:03

    [https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]] Your wish is my command.

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 13/May/2016 09:32:32

    [https://www.flickr.com/photos/beachcomberaustralia] [https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]] I am not sure about the passport, could it be an Autograph book?

  • profile

    O Mac

    • 13/May/2016 09:45:27

    [https://www.flickr.com/photos/nlireland] That looks better!! ...Re autograph book.. I think so too. Irish and UK passports had heavy hard card covers with square corners up to the '70's and not as many pages as this appears to have. so maybe actor,singer,comedian??

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 13/May/2016 09:51:11

    Out on a limb here - Could he be Richard Tauber? He did visit Dublin and Cork. Richard Tauber - Hamburg University

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    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 13/May/2016 09:58:12

    [https://www.flickr.com/photos/nlireland] Hot idea! See - www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=900376093345458...

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    O Mac

    • 13/May/2016 10:07:16

    [https://www.flickr.com/photos/nlireland] By Jove and gollygosh I think you're right. More images here. www.richard-tauber.de/2011/08/portraits-12-aufnahmen/ He visited Dublin in 1937/38 too www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/26381872503/in/datepos...

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    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 13/May/2016 10:36:53

    Richard Tauber in 1936 colour (!) movie of 'Pagliacci' - youtu.be/Cfx2LK-RP2I

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    oaktree_brian_1976

    • 13/May/2016 12:17:31

    Indiana Jones fedora!

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    maorlando - God keeps me as I lean on Him!!

    • 13/May/2016 13:53:22

    My dad, a WWII hero, died tragically in 1948, early in my young life, always wore a fedora... so I am particularly fond of them!!! Monocle would be correct.

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    RETRO STU

    • 13/May/2016 14:16:12

    WOW....well done that someone identified him!

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    jamica1

    • 13/May/2016 17:40:12

    [https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]] Also, from the position of his hand he seems to be writing in the book.

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    slartibartfass13

    • 13/May/2016 18:27:24

    I couldn't see the picture in the RSS feed, but clicked anyway because of the title. It did not disappoint.

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    Vab2009

    • 13/May/2016 19:23:09

    My jaw drops in admiration of your detective skills! Well done!

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    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 13/May/2016 22:06:23

    A couple of contemporary Trove finds -

    THE NATIONAL ANTHEM. The views of Richard Tauber, the world-famous tenor, with regard to the Irish National Anthem are in striking contrast to those of Count McCormack, recently referred to in these columns. Mr. Tauber has been appearing at a concert in Dublin [2nd Nov 1935], and was asked in an interview if his opinions about "The Soldier's Song" coincided with those of the Count, who sharply criticised its choice as an anthem, and deplored its lack of "tunefulness." He replied that whether the musical content is good or bad, a song that has been associated with the march of a nation to freedom should certainly be retained. He added that the sentiment behind the song was all that mattered. "If it has given inspiration to a nation," he said, "that is enough." Irishmen who remember the part that this marching tune played in the Volunteer days following the 1916 Rebellion will cordially agree.
    From trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/171913471 and from 1936...
    Tauber's Wife Tells. Love has made a new man of Richard Tauber - Diana Napier's love. When Tauber made his name singing "You Are My Heart's Delight,". he weighed 16 stone. Now he has lost three stones, has an athletic figure, looks thirtylsh instead of fortyish, is as high-spirited as a boy. His. wife, Miss Diana Napier, was induced this week to give the reason, "When I fell in love with him I told him I should love him a lot more if he took that fat off," she said. "First, I rang up his doctor In Berlin to be sure I didn't do something terrible to his constitution or his throat. Then I tackled the breakfasts he had at his hotel. He was eating for breakfast four rolls, four sausages, a large plate of bacon and eggs and spaghetti. I cut that down to two boiled eggs-very gradually, of course. This is his diet now - breakfast: Two boiled eggs, sometimes a little cold ham, dry toast. Lunch: Any grill, or roast except pork. Plenty of vegetables. Cucumber salad, fruit salad, Dutch cheese. Cigar. Tea: A glass of water or orange juice. Dinner: Any two of these three courses. Grilled fish. Grilled or roast meat and vegetables. Stewed fruit. He has given up drinking, except sometimes champagne. He's just right, and I hope he will stay as he is."
    From trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/117644042 So is this photo before or after the 1936 diet ?!

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    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 13/May/2016 22:17:25

    Where is he? Outside the Theatre Royal in Hawkins Street, Dublin? (see the facebook link above). And those young men are "stage-door Johnnies"?

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 13/May/2016 22:31:31

    Thanks all - based on all the above, we're even more certain that this is Herr Tauber. And, unlike the catalogue entry implications, that he's signing autographs (not holding a passport) with his right hand (not left) aided by his monocle (not monacle) in the 1930s (not 1910s). He does certainly look every inch the "genial toff" however, as described :)

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    O Mac

    • 14/May/2016 08:34:34

    And here's what his autograph looked like. www.historyforsale.com/html/prodetails.asp?documentid=589...

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    patrick.vickers1

    • 14/May/2016 10:16:45

    By coincidence a photograph of his grave, which is in Brompton Cemetery, has just appeared in the 'Dead Famous' group. R.T. was born in 1891 in Kunz, Austria and died in 1948. In his time he was quite famous and popular. He can be heard on You Tube singing 'My Heart and I' and 'You are My Hearts Delight'.. Is mentioned by The Pogues along with John McCormick in one of their songs.

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    patrick.vickers1

    • 15/May/2016 16:39:01

    'A Golden singer with a sunny heart, The Hearts Delight of millions was his art, Now that Rich Roaring Tender voice beguiles, Attentive Angels in the land of Smiles'

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    Niall McAuley

    • 16/May/2016 07:50:09

    I can't see that the background is the Theatre Royal. By this time we would be looking at the 3rd theatre royal, which was an Art Deco work, unlikely to feature a gothic arch. Perhaps he is outside a Hotel in Dublin or Cork?

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    O Mac

    • 16/May/2016 22:35:21

    I thought the background blur looked like an elevated railway or bridge of some sort. It might not have been taken in Ireland at all as Mason also took pictures in NI, Isle of Man, and UK. Pity about the poor depth of field.

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    billh35

    • 24/May/2016 13:54:58

    www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZyFFEs-XfQ4

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 24/May/2016 15:39:33

    [https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]6] Bill, He was a good singer. Good to hear from you.

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    doveson2002

    • 14/Sep/2016 22:22:13

    [https://www.flickr.com/photos/nlireland] Not just a good one but a great one. His reputation has suffered a bit owing to the amount of light music he sang, but he was the best pre-war Mozart tenor, A particular favourite of mine is his duetting with Lotte Lehmann in Korngold's 'Die Tote Stadt', which is on YouTube I think, and shows him at his very best. My mother hated him (as a singer), and it rather put me off investigating his music for years. He was a pretty accomplished pianist as well. Cheers

  • profile

    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 14/Sep/2016 22:58:04

    Thanks [https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]]. Must go looking for that the recording on YouTube. Much appreciated!

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    doveson2002

    • 15/Sep/2016 00:45:03

    [https://www.flickr.com/photos/nlireland] Charm yourself afterwards with his great contemporary (who could sing a high D without causing pain): www.youtube.com/watch?v=PZITRv1vJt8 Cheers