Commemorative issue The Barrymores - Performing Arts
John, Ethel, & Lionel Barrymore
Three members of the Barrymore family--Ethel, John, and Lionel--are honored on this single stamp. Ethel Barrymore, daughter of an actor and actress, made her New York stage debut in 1896 with her uncle, the celebrated John Drew. Between 1922-1926, she principally performed Shakespearean roles. In 1928, she inaugurated the Ethel Barrymore Theater in New York City.
Ethel's brother John was the youngest of the three children. He worked as an illustrator for two New York newspapers before taking to the stage. His first important role was in 1910 and seven years later teamed with brother Lionel in Peter Ibbetson. He moved to Shakespeare and in 1922 was regarded as the top Shakespearean actor of the time. John moved from the stage to film in 1923 and was a radio actor in the latter part of his career. Lionel Barrymore first performed in 1893 at the age of 15. His early interest was art, and some of his early etchings were published. His introduction to film was in 1915, opposite Mary Pickford, in The New York Hat. He began a tradition in 1934 of playing Ebenezer Scrooge in Dickens' A Christmas Carol in annual Christmas presentations.