|Birth: ||Mar. 11, 1878|
|Death: ||Aug. 2, 1945|
Los Angeles County
Born George Russ Cleary Fiske O'Hara, he was an Irish tenor, he ran a vocal school in Hollywood for thirteen years. O'Hara was a headliner in legitimate theater and vaudeville, as well as making appearances in film and on radio. On Broadway, he appeared in the original productions of "Dion O'Dare"(1907), "The Big Mogul"(1925), "Sidewalks of New York"(1927), and "Jerry-for-Short"(1929).
Died at age 67 in Hollywood California. According to a published obituary he left a nephew, Burton Cleary of North Hollywood.
Fiske O'Hara gave a struggling young actress a chance to tailor plays and eventually write whole plays that he produced. Her name was Anna Nichols and later became Anne Nichols after she wrote and successfully produced the play "Abie's Irish Rose" on Broadway. The following is an excerpt from an article called "Runaway School Girl Conquers Broadway" that appeared in the Milwaukee Sentinel on September 2, 1923:
Came seasons in stock – I did manage to scale the heights to a leading woman. At last one season my husband and I got an engagement with Fiske O'Hara in "Kilkenny." My husband was a juvenile and suddenly the thought came that some of those fine lines I was always imagining for my stories might augment his part into a good one. So nightly, we began to seed them into it and behaved like a baby on a health food. It got so fat that Mr. O'Hara noticed and remarked that I may as well write a whole play as one part. That seemed too wonderful to be possible and I doubt if I should ever have had the courage had not another actress entered the company. Adelaide Matthews it was, and to her I confessed my whole wild ambition, only to find she had a duplicate one. So, together, we worked out a play, doing the work every chance we got between cues; on trains; while we made up; any time and any place. Fondly, we called it when finished "Heart's Desire." And, it was more than that to me for Mr. O"Hara took it for production and then I knew that at least I had found my way into my own field.
I worked from that time on in a mad fever of energy. I didn't dare give up trouping, but I dashed off play after play. Dozens of them never got beyond my own wastebasket, but Mr. O'Hara ordered one a year and so, one after the other I had produced "The Man From Wicklow"; "The Happy Cavalier"; "The Land of Romance"; "Down Limerick Way" and "Seven Miles to Arden." They were all successful in a small way, but it wasn't until I wrote "Just A Little Bit Old Fashioned" that I knew I had Euripedes leashed to a tormentor entrance I had written the play primarily for the road but they booked it at one week in Chicago and it went in there and played all summer. That blessed play made me royalties for 82 weeks and, I suppose, I shall never feel so Napoleonic again.
Anne Nichols had stated in another newspaper that she was eating dinner with Mr. O'Hara and his wife whenever Mr. O'Hara told a true story about an Irish/ Jewish marriage that gave her the inspiration for "Abie's Irish Rose." Anne remained friends with the O'Haras and Mrs. O'Hara was very supportive of her near the end of her life. In a letter that Charles Stinson (nephew of Anne Nichols) wrote about her funeral in 1966 he states:
"Pat O'Hara and I, plus a retired Shakespearian actor from the Fund Home and a curate from Saint Malachy's, all drove up, in the wake of the hearse, , up deep into the summer verdure of Westchester County...Anne is (buried) about 10 yards away from where Fiske O'Hara is. It is a very quiet, very green tree-shaded spot , on the easy slope of a hill..."
Margaret Quinn (____ - 1926)
Marie Patricia Quinn O'Hara (1886 - 1974)*
Fiske O'Hara (1878 - 1945)
Fiske O'Hara (1878 - 1945)*
New York, USA
Plot: Actors' Fund
Maintained by: Wiregrasswalker
Originally Created by: Ginny M
Record added: Jun 27, 2005
Find A Grave Memorial# 11245360