Maude Ewing Adams Kiskadden followed in her mother’s acting footsteps early in life, making her own acting debut at just nine months old. She continued to act through childhood, taking her mother’s maiden name as her stage name, becoming known to the world as Maude Adams.
As an adult, Maude became the most famous and highest-paid actress of her time. Her greatest success was playing Peter Pan in the 1905 Broadway production of Peter Pan.
Offscreen, Maude was shy. She loved fashion, and she was generous, known for helping recovering soldiers and natural disaster victims and raising money to build college theaters. And she would send tickets to disadvantaged kids so they could see Peter Pan.
Throughout her career, she also took part in technology development, helping invent better lighting, and working on experiments of color film. And later in life, she became a teacher, leading the drama department at Stephens College in Missouri.
Notes and sources
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- Click here to read a snapshot biography of another performer, Marcel Marceau.
- Photograph of Maude is from the 1905 production of Peter Pan / unknown photographer for the Otto Sarony Co. / Museum of the City of New York Accession Number 32.290.9 / “Adams Peter Pan.” Wikimedia Commons, Wikimedia Foundation, https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Adams_Peter_Pan.jpg
- “Maude Adams, A Skilled Actress & Production Artist.” Better Days, https://www.utahwomenshistory.org/bios/maude-adams/
- “Maude Adams.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maude_Adams