How to be Insulting to Performers
W. S. Gilbert was introduced to the great pianist Liebling, immediately after one of his performances in London. To the performer's evident satisfaction, Gilbert began by saying:
'Sir, I have leard Liszt and I have heard Paderewski,' which Liebling acknowledged with a bow of his head. 'But.' continued Gilbert, 'neither of them perspired as profusely as you do.'
As the curtain was coming down on the first act of a new play, a critic sitting next to the producer picked up his raincoat and rose to leave.
'There's a terrific kick in the next act,' the producer told him.
'Keep it for the cast,' replied the critic.
The American critic. Peter Finley Dunne was leaving a performance given by the corpulent dancer, Isadora Duncan, when one of her disciples rushed up to him and asked what he thought of the performance. Bearing in mind that Miss Duncan's costume had been so scanty that the audience had been treated to views of her anatomy normally hidden from public eye, Dunne had to choose his words carefully.
'Oh, Mr. Dunne, did you enjoy madame's dancing?' the girl asked him enthusiastically.
'Immensely,' replied Dunne. 'It made me think of Grant's tomb in love.'