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Turn-of-the-20th-century Duluthians embraced the new age of American music and entertainment. With one of the largest stages in America and seating for 1500, the Lyceum Theater attracted top talent from around the world. In 1914, the Lyceum (located at 5th Ave. W. and Superior St.) staged the Ziegfeld Follies Annual Revue. In a 1920 production, the Orpheum Theater presented leading vaudeville artists, including Billie and Lillian Shaw, Ben Benny and Millicent Mower. In the summer of 1923, the Lyceum sponsored a Jazz Week, featuring xylophonist Libonati; Marion Carl, "the sunshine of syncopation;" Dave O'Malley and Harry Maxfield offering "Fifteen Minutes in Melody Land," and a Jardin de Danse act labeled "a terpsichorean surprise." The week was a success. According to the Duluth News-Tribune:
With melody and mirth, purveyed by snappy songsters who syncopate their way right into a rousing big reception, harmony hounds whose "blues" haunt one, and steppers who scintillate at every style of strut, Jazz Week at the Lyceum opened over the week-end.
In 1923, the Orpheum advertised The Goldfish: "If there is anything more pleasing to audiences in summer than a good comedy, it is French comedy - keen, snappy, witty and racy. Such is The Goldfish, one of the very latest stage successes adapted from the French to suit American Audiences."
Local entertainers also contributed to the jazz phenomenon: Duluthian Georgia Carlson left the city in 1924 for New York and became a successful dancer on Broadway and over the Keith vaudeville circuit. Duluth pianist Sadik Hakim's legacy is significant; Hakim played with Bird and Diz on Savoy, a session still in print as The Savoy Master Takes.
Duluth has continued a tradition of jazz appreciation. Both the University of Minnesota-Duluth and the University of Wisconsin-Superior have strong jazz programs. The annual Bayfront Blues Festival has been a tradition in Duluth since 1989. In 1999, the Duluth Public Library hosted The Jazz Age in Paris, a panel exhibition that examined Europe's early jazz movement, its close relationship to the development of jazz in the U. S., and the American artists, writers and musicians who lived in Paris during the early 1900s. The exhibit traveled to 28 public and academic libraries across the United States that competed for the honor of being its host.