Roche, Emeline Clark, 1902-1995.

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Emeline Clark Roche was a set and costume designer who at various stages in her career was involved in other aspects of theatrical production including lighting design and stock company management.

Ms. Roche also worked as a technical designer for New York City stage, television and stock productions as well as a designer of commercial productions.

Jane Cowl, actress and author, made her professional debut in David Belasco's Company in 1903 and quickly rose to become a star of the American theater.

She also wrote her own plays, formed her own production company, was active in war relief, had her own radio show and, at the end of her 47 year theatrical career, moved to Hollywood and appeared in two films.

From the description of Emeline Clark Roche Collection, 1815-1988. (New York Public Library). WorldCat record id: 122598284

Emeline Clark Roche was a set and costume designer who at various stages in her career was involved in other aspects of theatrical production including lighting design and stock company management.

Ms. Roche also worked as a technical designer for New York City stage, television and stock productions as well as a designer of commercial productions.

Emeline Roche was born on October 3, 1902. She studied at the Art Students' League, the New York School of Fine Art, and with Norman Bel-Geddes, later continuing on his staff for four years as an assistant draftsperson. During 1935-1936, she served on the faculty of the Florence Cane School of Art.

Beginning in the late twenties until 1939, she was involved with The Actor-Managers, Inc. run by Helen Arthur, Agnes Morgan, Aline Bernstein and Clara A. Weiss. She staged stock productions for that organization at the Newport Casino Theatre and Ann Arbor, among other venues. She was the stage manager for the touring companies of Ruth Draper and Angna Enters. Ms. Roche also worked as a technical supervisor for Aline Bernstein and Robert Edmond Jones.

During the thirties and forties, she was a technical assistant and costume designer for Herbert Shumlin, Gilbert Miller, Charles Froman, Inc. and the Theater Guild, designing Broadway productions including GRAND HOTEL, STATE OF THE UNION, ANIMAL KINGDOM and THE LATE CHRISTOPHER BEAN.

During World War II, Emeline Roche contributed her time and talents to the Stage Door Canteen and was the co-designer of the set for the original canteen. She served on the Executive Committee of the American Theatre Wing War Service Inc. She also worked as an army aircraft spotter.

She joined the United Scenic Artists, Local 829 in 1927 and worked as a volunteer with the union from that time until her death in 1995. From 1947-1954 she served as recording secretary of the union and corresponded with designers including Jo Mielziner. After the War she assisted Lee Simonson designing the setting for the Metropolitan Opera's 1947-1948 production of THE RING CYCLE.

From 1948 until 1954 Emeline Roche served as the costume designer for New York City Center drama productions. She also designed the costumes for the ANTA annual benefit at the Ziegfeld Theatre from 1949-1950 and again in 1955. She also served as technical designer for the television show THE KATE SMITH HOUR, which ran until October 1951, and worked as a designer of exhibitions and pageants for corporations.

Emeline Roche was a close friend and associate of Jane Cowl whom she met while in a stock production of RAIN FROM HEAVEN. They later both served on the Executive Committee of the American Theatre Wing during World War II. It is during this time that they became personal friends. After Jane Cowl's death in 1950, Emeline Roche organized the memorial in her honor and later purchased some of Jane Cowl's property at auction in 1952. Emeline Roche died in 1995 at the age of 93.

From the description of Emeline Clark Roche Papers, 1815-1988. (New York Public Library). WorldCat record id: 122598292

Emeline Clark Roche (1902-1995) was a set and costume designer, who, at various stages of her career, was involved in other aspects of theatrical production including lighting design and stock company management. Ms. Roche also worked as a technical designer for New York City stage, television and stock productions, as well as a designer of commercial productions.

Emeline Roche was born on October 3, 1902. She studied at the Art Students League, the New York School of Fine Arts, and with Norman Bel Geddes, later continuing on his staff for four years as an assistant draftsperson. During 1935-36, she served on the faculty of the Florence Cane School of Art.

Beginning in the late 1920s until 1939, she was involved with the Actor-Managers, Inc. run by Helen Arthur, Executive Director, Agnes Morgan, Aline Bernstein and Clara A. Weiss. She staged stock productions for that organization at the Newport Casino Theatre and Ann Arbor, among other venues. She was the stage manager for the touring companies of Ruth Draper and Angna Enters. Ms. Roche also worked as a technical supervisor for Aline Bernstein and Robert Edmond Jones.

During the 1930s and 1940s she was a technical assistant and costume designer for Herman Shumlin, Gilbert Miller, Charles Frohman, Inc. and the Theatre Guild, designing Broadway productions including Grand Hotel, State of the Union, Animal Kingdom and The Late Christopher Bean .

During World War II, Emeline Roche contributed her time and talents to the Stage Door Canteen and was the co-designer of the set for the original canteen. She served on the Executive Committee of the American Theatre Wing (ATW) War Service Inc. She also worked as an army aircraft spotter.

She joined the United Scenic Artists, Local 829, in 1927, and worked as a volunteer with the union from that time until her death in 1995. From 1947-1954, she served as recording secretary of the union and corresponded with designers including Jo Mielziner.

After the war, she assisted Lee Simonson, designing the setting for the Metropolitan Opera's 1947-48 production of the Ring cycle. From 1948 until 1954 she served as the costume designer for New York City Center Drama Productions.

Ms. Roche designed the costumes for the ANTA annual benefit at the Ziegfeld Theatre from 1949 to 1950 and again in 1955. She also served as technical designer for the television show the Kate Smith Hour, which ran until October 1951, and worked as a designer of exhibitions and pageants for corporations.

Ms. Roche met Jane Cowl in 1938 when Ms. Cowl was an actor in a stock production of Rain from Heaven at Ann Arbor. They later both served on the Executive Committee of the American Theatre Wing during World War II and became personal friends. As a result, Ms. Roche became involved with some of Ms. Cowl's other closest associates, including Jane Murfin, the co-author of four of her productions. After Jane Cowl's death in 1950, Roche organized the memorial in her honor and later purchased some of her property at auction in 1952.

Emeline Roche died on October 20, 1995 at the age of 93.

Jane Cowl (1883-1950), actor and author, was born Grace Bailey in Boston on December 14, 1883. According to a notation in the files, her date of birth was found in the Boston city records. She was the daughter of Grace and Charles A. Bailey. The family moved to New York City when she was three years old.

She began her career as an actor with David Belasco, debuting in the Belasco Theatre on December 10, 1903 as an extra in Sweet Kitty Bellairs, and quickly rose to starring roles with his company. In 1912, she scored a major success as Mary Turner in Within the Law . She also appeared in the early silent movie The Spreading Dawn in 1917.

Ms. Cowl later collaborated with Jane Murfin (Crisp) to write and appear in four plays including Lilac Time (1917), Smilin' Through, first produced in New York in 1919, Information Please and Daybreak . She was the author of the plays The Jealous Moon and Hervey House . Ms. Cowl was acclaimed for her Shakespearean roles. She was considered the greatest Juliet in American theater, playing a record-breaking number of performances during the 1922-1923 season. During the 1920s Jane Cowl formed her own production company, directing and starring in productions including Romeo and Juliet . Her career also took her to London where she appeared in Noel Coward's Easy Virtue and other productions.

Ms. Cowl lectured and wrote on theatrical and other topics. In the 1940s she had a radio program on WOR. During World War I she was active in war relief and in World War II she was the co-chair of the Stage Door Canteen Committee and served on the Board of Directors of the American Theatre Wing.

She married Adolph Klauber, a New York Times drama critic and theatrical producer, on June 19, 1906. He died in 1933.

At the end of her 47 year theatrical career, she moved to Hollywood and appeared in films including Once More My Darling, released in 1949 and her last film, Payment on Demand, released in 1951 after her death.

Jane Cowl died in Santa Monica, California on June 22, 1950.

From the guide to the Emeline Clark Roche Collection, 1815-1988, (The New York Public Library. Billy Rose Theatre Division.)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf Roche, Emeline Clark, 1902-1995. Emeline Clark Roche Collection, 1815-1988. New York Public Library System, NYPL
creatorOf Emeline Clark Roche Collection, 1815-1988 The New York Public Library. Billy Rose Theatre Division.
referencedIn Cowl, Jane, 1883-1950. Jane Cowl papers, 1884-1949. New York Public Library System, NYPL
creatorOf Roche, Emeline Clark, 1902-1995. Emeline Clark Roche Papers, 1815-1988. New York Public Library System, NYPL
Role Title Holding Repository
Direct Relationships
Relation Name
associatedWith American Theatre Wing. corporateBody
associatedWith Anglin, Margaret, 1876-1958 person
associatedWith Anthony, C. L., 1896- person
associatedWith Antoinette Perry person
associatedWith Arthur, Helen-Jean person
associatedWith Behrman, S. N. (Samuel Nathaniel), 1893-1973 person
associatedWith Bisson, Alexandre, 1848-1912 person
associatedWith Bloomgarden, Kermit, 1904-1976 person
associatedWith Braggiotti, Stiano, 1904-1984 person
associatedWith Carl Van Vechten person
associatedWith Casino Theatre (Newport, R.I.) corporateBody
associatedWith Cezanne, Paul, 1839-1906 person
associatedWith Coward, Noel, 1899-1973 person
associatedWith Cowl, Jane, 1883-1950. person
associatedWith Cowl, Jane, 1883-1950. person
associatedWith Degas, Edgar, 1834-1917 person
associatedWith Dreyfus, Henry person
associatedWith Elkins, Mary Louise person
associatedWith Farrar, Geraldine, 1882-1967 person
associatedWith Ferrer, Jose, 1912- person
associatedWith Frederick, Willa person
associatedWith Gable, Clark, 1901-1960 person
associatedWith Gauguin, Paul, 1848-1903 person
associatedWith Giraudoux, Jean, 1882-1944 person
associatedWith Gogh, Vincent van, 1853-1890 person
associatedWith Greene, Patterson person
associatedWith Hamilton, Patrick, 1904 Mar. 17-1962 person
associatedWith Howard, Sidney Coe, 1891-1939 person
associatedWith Jones, Robert Edmond, 1887-1954 person
associatedWith Kappel, Alexander person
associatedWith Lee, Cherylene person
associatedWith Lord, Pauline, 1890-1950 person
associatedWith MacMahon, Aline, b. 1899 person
associatedWith Mary, Queen, consort of George V, King of Great Britain, 1867-1953 person
associatedWith Matisse, Henri, 1869-1954 person
associatedWith Mayor LaGuardia person
associatedWith Merchant, Abby person
associatedWith Mielziner, Jo, 1901- person
associatedWith Molnár, Ferenc, 1878-1952 person
associatedWith Morgan, Agnes, 1879-1976 person
associatedWith Morse, Frank P. person
associatedWith Munro, C. K. (Charles Kirkpatrick), 1889-1973 person
associatedWith Nae, Yuan person
associatedWith Osborn, Paul, 1901- person
associatedWith Picasso, Pablo, 1881-1973 person
associatedWith Powel, Robert Hare person
associatedWith Renoir, Auguste, 1841-1919 person
associatedWith Rice, Elmer, 1892-1967 person
associatedWith Ritchie, Anna Cora Ogden Mowatt, 1819-1870 person
associatedWith Rogers, Nancy person
associatedWith Royle, Selena, 1904-1983 person
associatedWith Saarinen, Aline B. (Aline Bernstein), 1914-1972 person
associatedWith Selena Royle person
associatedWith Selwart, Tonio, 1896- person
associatedWith Seurat, Georges, 1859-1891 person
associatedWith Sheridan, Richard Brinsley, 1751-1816 person
associatedWith Sherwood, Robert E. (Robert Emmet), 1896-1955 person
associatedWith Simonson, Lee, 1888- person
associatedWith Sol Lesser Productions, Inc corporateBody
associatedWith Stage Door Canteen corporateBody
associatedWith Stage Door Canteen. corporateBody
associatedWith Toulouse-Lautrec, Henri de, 1864-1901 person
associatedWith United Service Organizations (U.S.). Camp Shows corporateBody
associatedWith Van Vechten, Carl, 1880-1964 person
associatedWith Vera Allen person
associatedWith Weiss, Clara A person
associatedWith Werfel, Franz, 1890-1945 person
associatedWith Wilder, Thornton, 1897-1975 person
Place Name Admin Code Country
Subject
Theaters--Stage-setting and scenery
Women in the theater
Theater--Production and direction
Stage lighting
World War, 1939-1945--Theater and the war
Authors and theater
Occupation
Costume designers
Set designers
Actresses
Stage lighting designers
Function

Person

Birth 1902

Death 1995

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