French Spy

Event Information

New-York Theatre (1866-69)

Price: $.50

Event Type:
Play With Music

Record Information


Last Updated:
21 May 2016

Performance Date(s) and Time(s)

08 Jul 1867, 8:00 PM
09 Jul 1867, 8:00 PM
10 Jul 1867, 8:00 PM
11 Jul 1867, 8:00 PM
12 Jul 1867, 8:00 PM
13 Jul 1867, Matinee
13 Jul 1867, 8:00 PM

Program Details

“Saturday only Zoe matinee.” Ad for 07/11/67 says “the Cuban sylph in her wild Arab dance” Ad for Sat., 07/13/67 says “This Evening, Only Benefit of Mlle. Marie Zoe” (i.e., Friday evening) Tomorrow, Saturday, . . .”

Performers and/or Works Performed

aka The French spy; Or, The storming of Algiers; The French spy; Or, The siege of Algiers; The French spy; Or, The fall of Algiers
Text Author: Haines
Participants:  Marie Zoe (role: Cuban Sylph);  W. H. Leak


Advertisement: New York Herald, 07 July 1867.

Comment: “Saturday only Zoe matinee.” Ad for 07/11/67 says “the Cuban sylph in her wild Arab dance” Ad for Sat., 07/13/67 says “This Evening, Only Benefit of Mlle. Marie Zoe” (i.e., Friday evening) Tomorrow, Saturday, . . .”

Announcement: New York Post, 09 July 1867, 2.
Review: New York Post, 09 July 1867, 2.

“At the New York Theatre Mlle. Zoe made her first appearance last night in the 'French Spy,' and succeeded in satisfying the audience.  We think, however, that the time for such pieces is over, and that those who once delighted in them will now prefer the multitudinous attractions of the 'Black Crook.'”

Advertisement: New York Clipper, 13 July 1867, 111.
Announcement: New York Clipper, 13 July 1867, 110, 2d col., middle.
Review: New York Clipper, 20 July 1867, 118, 2d col., bottom.

Mlle Zoe, the 'Cuban Sylph', commenced a limited engagement of six nights at the Worrell Sisters’ Theatre on the 8th inst., making her first appearance in this city, after a long absence, as Henri St. Alme, Hamet, and Mathilde, in the military drama of the 'French Spy', which was played every evening during the week, and for a matinée on Saturday. She was welcomed by a very crowded house, and throughout the week (except Friday, when the rain came down in torrents just as the theatre opened,) attracted large audiences. Taking into consideration the season of the year, when the lakes and springs are supposed to afford attractions superior to any combination that can be collected in a theatre, the success of Zoe is the more noticeable under the circumstances. Except the “Black Crook”, she has done the best business in the city. As the Spy, Zoe is one of the best representatives we have seen since Celeste, in her early days, and her broadsword combat, in the second act, is the best exhibition of muscular skill and command of the sword that we have yet seen. She fights with a terrible earnestness, and, in wielding the sword, exhibits a muscular power and endurance that we have never before seen in any actress in the character. Of all the fights that we have seen between the 'Richards' and 'Richmonds' Zoe’s fight with Mohammed surpasses them all. She fights all over the stage and in every possible position in which a person could be placed. She has made this a feature of her performance and succeeds in ‘bringing down the house’. One of our daily papers in a long winded tirade has become frightened at the ‘immoral exhibition’ which Zoe is said to make with her legs, appearing to be shocked at the sight of a well turned ankle and a pretty leg. The same paper made a savage attack upon the Menken during her late performance in this city. There is a great deal of ‘prurient prudishness’ in all such talk. The Menken, and Zoe, dress (or undress, whichever you please), their respective roles, no more nor less than many other of their predecessors. Zoe has a bright face with flashing eyes and a beautiful figure, which are displayed to picturesque and graceful advantage. The purest woman can suggest nothing but foul thoughts to an indecent man, and the virtue of Lucretia did not save her from pollution at the hands of the infamous Tarquin. It depends altogether on the mental and moral condition of those persons themselves who gaze on the physical proportions of a stage beauty. It is a pity that such an innocent male virgin as the aforesaid critic should be exposed to the inappropriate shock of seeing the figure of a handsome woman in flesh colored tights, and we should feel sincere regret if he was ruined in consequence. The public has by its large attendance upheld the ‘immoral exhibition’ and pronounced Zoe one of the best impersonators of the 'French Spy' on the stage . . . . She received very efficient support from W.H. Leak, a good actor, who played Mohammed very well.”