Who was Gladys Moncrieff?
Gladys Moncrieff (1892-1976)
Gladys Lillian Moncrieff was born in Bundaberg on 13 April 1892. She had her professional debut as a child singer in Dan Barry’s touring production of East Lynne at the Queen’s Theatre (a plaque has been placed on the building, now the Queens Theatre Arcade at 31 Woongarra Street). When she was 19, Moncrieff auditioned for JC Williamson’s and was given a 3 year contract with Dame Nellie Melba’s approval. At 22, she made her first recordings in London then returned to Australia to tour regularly with Williamson’s and had a stellar career in musical theatre and light opera. One of her final performances was at the opening of the Sydney Opera House in 1973. Dame Joan Sutherland has said, “Gladys Moncrieff was the Queen of Musical Comedy during my childhood and for much longer than that. Her right to that title will never be disputed.”