After college he joined civil service, which left him little time for writing. To make ends meet he began writing drama reviews for the Dublin Mail newspaper which eventually led to him meeting Sir Henry Irving.
Max Beerbohm described Irving as having an “inner devil”, making him highly effective both on stage and film.
Early Life and Education
Henry Bram was born in Wisconsin and lived for 39 years before passing away at 79.
He attended Trinity College, Dublin where he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in English and history before going on to earn a master’s in business administration from Central Missouri State University.
After graduating, he joined actor Henry Irving’s acting troupe and then took over management of London’s Lyceum Theatre, becoming a familiar face within London society while gaining invaluable experience within the arts world.
David J. Skal’s book “Something in the Blood: The Man Who Wrote Dracula” details how Stoker may have drawn inspiration for some of the terrifying events depicted in his books from experiences from early in his life.
Henry Bram was Sir Henry Irving’s personal assistant and business manager for 27 years, working together on numerous productions at London’s Lyceum Theater.
At times, their strong bond was apparent to audiences both on stage and through letters they exchanged. While HI was distant and sardonic, exuding an aura of thespian gravitas; Bram was warm-hearted, engaging and an ideal Front-of-House meeter and greeter; although their partnership wasn’t equal (HI was unquestionably the Guv’nor), together they created an unrivalled teamwork.
Their relationship was free of rancor or friction; Bram embraced his new duties without hesitation or complaint in spite of Mr. Irving being listed at the head of each program for Lyceum events and himself appearing further down as Sole Lessee and Manager.
Achievement and Honors
Bram was an outgoing college student known for his good manners and athletic prowess as a hurdler, vaulter, long jumper, oarsman, and rugby player. Additionally he pursued an education degree while holding key offices within historical and philosophical societies at his university.
His writing also included short stories and theatre reviews for free publication by the Dublin Evening Mail. These works reflected both the melancholic mood of their times as well as the gothic, magical, and fantastical nature of Irish folklore.
At the Lyceum, his public-facing role brought him into contact with many prominent figures of his time: from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and Alfred Lord Tennyson to Sheridan Le Fanu and Mark Twain.
Bram had been an extremely sickly child; yet upon his arrival at Trinity he flourished into an active sportsman and popular campus presence. He excelled in debate and oratory; additionally as an active member of both Trinity’s preeminent student scholarly societies – College Historical Society and University Philosophical Society (Trinity’s leading student societies), Bram held top offices within both organizations.
Starting in 1890 and taking seven years to finish, Bram Stoker started writing Dracula during his day job at the Lyceum – often finding time and space in between lectures – under Henry Irving as his formidable patronage.
HI was often perceived as distant and sardonic; yet, his warmth made him the ideal Front-of-House meeter and greeter. Together with Bram, they formed an effective team.
At least 20 of his novels and short stories have been translated into over 40 different languages; his works include Angels & Demons, Da Vinci Code, Last Symbol and Inferno to name just some of them.
He is also an accomplished playwright and actor, appearing in numerous stage productions such as Up Against It, Henry IV Parts I & II, You’re A Good Man Charlie Brown and Big River which earned critical acclaim. Additionally he has appeared in television series and films.