Lilian Baylis

From LGBT Archive
Jump to: navigation, search
Baylis with a little dog
Lilian Baylis and friend c.1920
Lilian Baylis (1874–1937) was a theatrical producer and manager. She was born in London, but lived in South Africa from 1891 to 1898.

In 1912 she took over the management of the Royal Victoria Hall and Coffee Tavern at Waterloo, which became known as the Old Vic. In 1931 she achieved the re-opening of the formerly derelict Sadlers Wells Theatre. She ended up running an opera company, which became the English National Opera (ENO); a theatre company, which evolved into the English National Theatre; and a ballet company, which eventually became the English Royal Ballet.

Lilian Baylis was "part of a close group of unmarried women in the first decades of the twentieth century"[1] and there has been controversy over whether or not she might have been lesbian.[2]


This article is a stub. You can help the UK LGBT History Project by expanding it.
  1. Neil Miller, Out of the Past: Gay and Lesbian History from 1869 to the present, Vintage, 1995, page 59.
  2. Elizabeth Schafer, Lilian Baylis: A Biography, University of Hertfordshire Press, 2006