Cover to Cover with Jack Foley, for January 26, 2011 - 3:00pm
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Harry Fox, Vaudevillian. The career of the man who invented “The Fox Trot” and who went from star (“Harry Fox will appear for a month or longer at a large salary with billing that will occupy the front of the theatre in electrics,” Variety, 1914”) to not-quite-zero in a matter of decades:
SONNET WITH HARRY FOX
You were the star of an ancient serial:
Beatrice Fairfax—date: 1916.
Your co-star was a Love-Lorn column queen
Who solved the crime before the final reel.
You sang bright songs in Broadway musicals
And danced “The Fox Trot,” then took to a screen
Where you could not be heard but only seen—
Yet seen to good advantage, after all.
I wondered if you knew my father then
When both of you were names to reckon with.
He left the stage—became another man—
But you stayed on and made a life of it.
Your rising star fell soon upon the rocks.
Your life’s on this marquee: “WITH HARRY FOX.”