“Successful beyond expectation:” blackface, minstrelsy, and racist entertainment at UW–Madison

The short-lived Union Vodvil hosted by the Men’s Union often featured minstrel performances. The 1920 program features cover art by Fred Perry (class of 1921) which depicts an actor in minstrel show blackface slouching in a theatrical spotlight. The show included standard minstrel acts like “Dark Town Syncopation” and a “Danse Bizarre” featuring Middle Eastern slaves. Courtesy of UW Archives. Program cover for the Union Vodvil in 1920 featuring a blackface caricature.

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