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Henry Moncrieff Tennent (18 February 1879 – 10 June 1941),[1] also known as Harry Tennent, was a British theatrical producer, impresario and songwriter. The power of the producers H.M. Tennent and Hugh ‘Binkie’ Beaumont led to many accusations of undue influence, skewed in favour of particular young men for sexual reasons. Of the young Richard Burton, for instance, Frank Hauser wrote: ‘There is no doubt that the gay mafia around H.M. Tennent all fell for him, and although Richard was always resolutely heterosexual, I think he already knew how to play the gay game’. Tennessee Williams, during an interview with George Whitmore in 1976, when asked the question, ‘Do you think there is any such thing as a homosexual conspiracy in the theater?’ had replied, ‘In England, under H.M. Tennent, the theater was dominated by great homosexual talents. H.M. Tennent was one of the leading producers of London’s West End Theater. And I think Binkie Beaumont did exercise a considerable tyranny … I think the theater was, in London [in the 1940s and 1950s], dominated by homosexuals, mainly because they offered the most talent. They don’t anymore.’ Whitmore prompted him: ‘Of course there are innumerable homosexual producers in New York’, to which Williams unhelpfully replied, ‘Probably. I don’t know. I’m not interested in the sex lives of producers. They’re not attractive enough to interest me.’

From 1929 to 1933, Tennent mentored Binkie Beaumont, having previously worked with him in Cardiff. When Tennent, already the general manager at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, and a senior executive with Moss Empires, persuaded the boards of Moss Empires and of Howard & Wyndham to co-operate, in order the better to produce theatre drama, it was Tennent and Beaumont who became the chief executives of a new shared company H. M. Tennent Ltd. The largest and controlling shareholders were the Cruikshank family of Howard & Wyndham founded in Glasgow [2] in 1895 and headquartered in Edinburgh.[3] Their first production at the Queen's Theatre in 1936 was a failure, but later that year they formalised their partnership as the production company 'H. M. Tennent Ltd', with offices on the top floor of the Globe Theatre (now the Gielgud), and went on to great success. On Tennent's death of a heart attack in 1941, Beaumont found he was unmentioned in Tennent's will, but nevertheless took over as managing director of the company.

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