Dixie Theatre was considered a neighborhood theatre and, as such, maintained a "popular-price" policy.
The company was headed by leading man Clayton Burnison and leading woman Kathleen Taylor. Several of the troupe's supporting members had recently been on the roster of the American Theatre Stock Company and were known in Philadelphia theatrical circles. These actors, including Edna May Kaufman and Winnie Wilmer, gave the new company credence with Philadelphia audiences.
The company was a standard stock organization, presenting a weekly change of dramatic fare that intermingled recent Broadway plays with perennial stock company "favorites." By Christmas of 1915 the company had become quite popular, reportedly receiving 125 holiday gifts from local Manayunk fans. When, in February 1916, the management of the Manhattan Players decided to take their company on the road, Burnison, Taylor, and most of the other actors decided to form their own organization in order to remain at Manayunk's Dixie Theatre. With Burnison assuming the managerial duties of securing plays and managing finances, the company was newly christened the Clayton Burnison Players. They remained at the Dixie Theatre until the end of the 1915-16 season and then dispersed. Despite the disbanding, profits had been good, and the Dixie Theatre again hosted a permanent stock company for the 1916-17 season, Severin De Deyn and his Associate Players.
Management: Manhattan Players Company, succeeded by Clayton Burnison.
Stage Director: Craig Neslo.
Actors and Actresses: Clayton Burnison, Thomas Clark, Nan Hope, John Hopkins, Edna May Kaufman, Gordon Keeley, Charles Keller, Vera McMasters, Ada Prince, Frank Ridsdale, Kathleen Taylor, Winnie Wilmer.
New York Dramatic Mirror, 1915-17.
Mari Kathleen Fielder
MANHATTAN COMPANY. The Manhattan Company grew out of Harrison Grey Fiske's management of the Manhattan Theatre (Broadway and Thirty-third Street, New York, New York). In 1890, when Harrison Grey Fiske married the popular actress Minnie Maddern, he had been, at twenty-nine years of age, the successful editor of the New York Dramatic Mirror for twelve years. In 1897, Fiske had exposed the business tactics of the Theatrical Syndicate, and in the trial of the libel suit the syndicate brought against him, he had read into the court record the contract which bound the members of the syndicate. From that