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Curtain Calls

In 1936, the distinguished actor Otis Holmes Skinner (1858-1942), encouraged Dr. Bob Jr. to make a career in theatre. He did not take Skinner’s advice, but he did develop a one-man show. Known as “Curtain Calls,” the show was performed in “authentic costumes and makeup, [with] special stage setting and lighting effects,” and accompanied by classical music on the piano or organ. It was scheduled for four weeks of performances each year until December 1945, and brought acclaim to Jones Jr. as a Shakespearean interpreter. One critic wrote, “What a joy to have a Hamlet that is young, alive, and good-looking. Bob Jones brings to the part youth, fire, and fine acting.”

In 1934, when Dr. Bob was twenty-three, Asbury College in Wilmore, Kentucky, awarded him an honorary doctor of letters degree for his work as a Shakespearean actor. The Shakespeare Association of America invited him to present Curtain Calls at their 1935 annual convention, and he was hailed by the International Lyceum Association as the “best young actor of Shakespeare in America.”