This Was The Week That Was

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Today In 1937 the first full-length colour cartoon was premiered: Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, which six decades later is still turning up at a multiplex near you. (Unlike Peludopolis, the first black- and-white cartoon talkie, a political satire on a forgotten president of Argentina.)

Tomorrow The first revolving stage began whizzing around in 1758; wisely, it was extremely small-scale, at Kado-za Doll Theatre, Osaka, Japan.

Wednesday In 1888 the big news in art was that Van Gogh cut off his ear; he was depressed, not least because Gauguin was leaving their lodgings in Arles to escape the winter (and possibly Vincent's company).

Christmas Eve In 1922 The Truth about Father Christmas, the first play written for the wireless, by Phyllis M Twigg, became a branch of radio history. In 1974 the Christmas spirit did not extend to The Beatles; the Fab Four became four Fab Ones.

Christmas Day It wasn't until 1843 that Mitchell's Olympic Theatre in New York worked out what to do with a stage empty all day: they put on a matinee.

Boxing Day Britain's first ever pantomime was Harlequin Executed, at Lincoln's Inn Fields Theatre in 1717. Oh no it wasn't! Oh yes it was!

Sunday In 1904 Peter Pan opened in London, with Gerald du Maurier as Captain Hook. In Dublin the first state-subsidised theatre, the Abbey, presented plays by Lady Gregory and Mr Yeats.