Tommy Lorne

(Hugh Gallagher Corcoran)

1890 - 1935

Music hall comedian. Born Hugh Gallagher Corcoran in Cowcaddens, the son of Irish immigrants, he was raised in Kirkintilloch (East Dunbartonshire) and Glasgow. He won a scholarship to St Aloysius' College in the city and obtained a professional position at the Blochairn Steelworks. He had begun entertaining as a child and he continued performing in amateur nights at the music halls of Glasgow, before giving up his job to concentrate on entertaining. He toured as a double-act called Wallace and Lorne but his career was interrupted by service in the Royal Field Artillery during the First World War, which took him to India and Afghanistan. Thereafter he became established as the leading pantomime star of the time, appearing in Howard and Wyndham's productions at the King's Theatre in Edinburgh and at the Theatre Royal in Glasgow, as well as touring around Britain in revue.

Lorne was known for his white makeup and comically exaggerated highland dress, including a large Glengarry bonnet, undersized jacket, very short kilt and big boots, as well as the catchphrase "in the name of the wee man!".

Having battled with drink and exhausted after an arduous tour, he collapsed following a performance in the King's Theatre in Edinburgh. He died in a nursing home in the city. Such was his popularity that 3000 people attended his funeral service at St. Roch's Roman Catholic Church in Glasgow.

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