The Heaviest of Swells
The Basket Of Onions
Published: C. Sheard - October 1867
Music: James Bayman
Lyrics: George Leybourne
The Basket of Onions – This cover by Richard Childs, set in the property room of a theatre during pantomime season, is crammed with details of Victorian theatre, from the theatre’s rules pasted on the wall, to items of costume, various props, and the ‘big heads’ used in the opening scenes of Victorian pantomime. The Harlequinade, the final section of the evening, has started as on the corridor wall the shadow of Clown can be seen in the glare of stage’s gas light. In another tale of unrequited love, Leybourne is found portraying an actor, and from state of his clothes not a successful one, who is in love with a Covent Garden onion seller named ‘Mary’.