Comedian Averts Theatre Panic
Even the lowly may some day rise to the heights reserved for hero worship.
Marty Joyce was just a comedian appearing on the vaudeville stage and who was content to make people laugh. He also acted as master of ceremonies at some of the Sunday night concerts in New York city. One of his numbers is “When the PussyWillow Whispers to the Catnip,” and that generally brings the greatest laugh.
During the show some one in the audience reported that he detected the odor of smoke. The word was passed hack stage and Marty who was through with his act reappeared. The audience immediately sat up when the orchestra commenced to play his popular song. It was doubly popular because at certain parts in the song, the audience is given an opportunity to join in the whisper.
When the sound of fire apparatus was heard, he requested the policemen in the theatre to station themselves at the exits. A? soon as the men and ushers had taken their positions, he told the audience that there was a small fire in the theatre and that all should leave quietly’. They did and the 2,400 persons who left in an orderly manner averted what might have been a serious panic.