On October 28, 1876, the South London Press reported an incident which had occurred several nights earlier at Drury Lane during a performance of Richard III. Had it taken place at the south London neighborhood theatres of the Surrey or the Victoria it would have been unremarked and unremarkable:

During the fourth act of “Richard III,” a hungry spectator occupying a seat in the front row of the gallery felt inclined to enjoy his supper and the performance together. Removing from a paper parcel he had brought with him the savory contents, it was his misfortune to drop a small pork pie over the gallery railing, and his shrieking ejaculation of horror and woebegone look as he saw the rich repast . . . lodged in the center of a dress-circle chandelier far below first called the attention of the audience to the circumstance. Presently, as the pork began to frizzle in the gas jets, a most appetizing odor pervaded the house, and a few fragments of crisp pie-crust dropping through convenient apertures in the chandelier among the persons in the pit, there was an evident scramble for the succulent morsels, which were devoured with manifest relish. In a short time the attention became more directed to . . . the frizzling pork pie and the pursuit of the oleaginous morsels . . . than to the description of the “devouring boar” on the stage. Everybody began to feel hungry, and the eager looks of the supernumeraries forming the contending armies of Richmond and Richard, centered ... on that chandelier exhaling such delicious fragrance. . . . The fun reached its height when, on a call for the manager, a wag in the pit cried out, “Mr. Chatterton, is that a real Melting Mowbray (Morris) pork pie?” Everybody roared with laughter excepting the one man in the gallery. 1