Pub.d as the Act Directs March 1st 1780 by W. Richardson No. 68 High Holborn
Mezzotint with very large margins, platemark 155 x 115mm (6 x 4½"). Good impression; slight foxing.
Mary Ann Yates (née Graham) (1728-1787), actress and theatre manager. She made her debut with Garrick's Drury Lane company in 1754 and in 1756 married another member of the company, the recently-widowed comedian Richard Yates (1706?-1796). She remained a regular member of Garrick's company until 1767, when she switched her allegiances to the rival Covent Garden Theatre, allegedly for financial reasons (although Yates denied this). She then broke with Covent Garden, less for financial reasons than the company's reluctance to retain Richard Yates, and in 1773 she took over management, with novelist and playwright Frances Brooke, of the King's Theatre, then London's home of opera. Around this time Richard Yates took over a playhouse in Birmingham, where Mary Ann sometimes performed. Having improved the fortunes of the King's Theatre, Yates returned to Drury Lane and sold her share in the King's Theatre. London's leading tragedienne of the period, Yates was admired by the public, with notable admirers including Horace Walpole and William Godwin. From a set of small mezzotint portraits of actresses and singers, published by the printseller William Richardson in 1780, apparently to follow up a similar set of actor portraits published the previous year. Engraved after a painting by draughtsman and singer Robert Dighton (1751-1814) by the mezzotint engraver and printseller Robert Laurie (1755?-1836). Music, instruments and mask (representing theatre) in title area.
Ex: Oettingen-Wallenstein collection and collection of the late Hon. C. Lennox-Boyd; CS 1 ii/iii; for Yates and Garrick, see ref. 20918.
[Ref: 36687] £260.00