“The Mischief Makers”

Crass comedy and dancing.
To say or claim "burlesque has cleaned up" is a joke, according to "The Mischief Makers" at the Garrick (Columbia-American Wheel) this week. The performance is undeniably smutty in every department. If there were as much talent exposed as person, this show would have been the banner burlesque performance of the century. Observation has taught to expect lewdness of some nature where there is "sparse supply of anything else," so no more could be expected from "The Mischief Makers" than is given. The entire second part is vulgar, much of it dirty, some of it indecent and all of it smutty. When the comedians are not "pulling dirt," they are lost. But one of the best bits of spicy burlesque business seen in an age came out in the burlesque, that of the mirror on the stage, upon which the women stand, through trickery by the comedians who are in search of a $20,000 diamond garter. The runway around the orchestra pit, as first employed in this show, when Jean Bedini organized it, is the chief part of the performance. The chorus girls are dressed accordingly, and as "The Mischief Makers" is essentially a man's show, the men don't mind the various displays. The comedians are using Ed Wynn's old sketch, or that part of it referring to the woman who never laughed. Having copped this, and in view of their other altogether useless material, it simply remains a question where they obtained the "mirror business" from, as it would be foolish to credit them or anyone with this show as the originator of it. Margaret Shannon is principal woman. So-So, with a pleasant speaking voice anyway. Mabel Clark is the soubret. Mabel is now red headed by the wig route, but had a cold Tuesday matinee. Ruby Lusby is the "ginger" in the performance. In her last two numbers, Miss Lusby exhibited she didn't care what she wore or what she did. Ruby is a pliable young woman for this group, which also holds Rich McAllister, Felix Rush, Phil Joffie and Goe. Brennan as male principals. There's no choice. The Aloha Twins are an extra attraction, carried with the show. They do the Hawaiian act in the customary way, introducing a touch of the "cooch." Just before them a funny song and dance man probably though he was doing "an act in one." "The Mischief Makers" are well named for any good they will ever do to help "advanced burlesque." "Clean burlesque!" That sounds like the most comical thing in burlesque this season.
Variety, 40:8 (10/22/1915)