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Archive for September 21st, 2012

by Pat Perry

By sheer, happy coincidence, I come today to sing the praises of a legendary Looney Tunes short on the 100th birthday of its creator – Charles M. “Chuck” Jones.

I can clearly recall a time in my childhood when most of what I knew about classical music I’d learned from Bugs Bunny.

Like so many kids who grew up watching Chicago television in the ‘60s and ‘70s, Looney Tunes were once an integral part of my early morning routine. From Channel Nine’s Ray Rayner and Friends show, we got a daily, before-school dose of Daffy Duck, Porky Pig, Foghorn Leghorn, Yosemite Sam, Road Runner and Wile E. Coyote… and, of course, the “wascally wabbit” who forever outran hunter Elmer Fudd.

During those formative years, I was introduced to Liszt’s Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2 by Bugs’ enthusiastic performance of it in Rhapsody Rabbit, and to conductor Leopold Stokowski by Bugs’ impersonation of him in Long-Haired Hare. In Rabbit of Seville, Bugs escaped the gun of Elmer Fudd by leading him into an opera house and subjecting him to a variety of tonsorial torments set to the rhythms of Rossini’s Barber of Seville overture. And from today’s countdown honoree – What’s Opera Doc? – I learned unforgettable lyrics to Richard Wagner’s “Ride of the Valkyries” – to this day, I cannot get them out of my head when I hear that music. C’mon, sing ‘em with me now: “Kill da wabbit! Kill da wabbit! Kill da Wa-a-a-a-bit!!!!!” (more…)

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by Allan Fish

(UK 1990 175m) DVD1/2

Heathens in hot places

p  Philippa Giles  d  Beeban Kidron  w/novel  Jeanette Winterson  ph  Ian Punter  ed  John Strickland  m  Rachel Portman  art  Cecilia Brereton  cos  Les Lansdown

Charlotte Coleman (Jess), Emily Aston (small Jess), Geraldine McEwan (mother), Celia Imrie (Miss Jewsbury), Cathryn Bradshaw (Melanie), Kenneth Cranham (Pastor Finch), Margery Withers (Elsie), Freda Dowie (Mrs Green), Elizabeth Spriggs (May), Pam Ferris (Mrs Arkwright), David Thewlis (doctor), Katy Murphy (Mrs Virtue), Tania Rodrigues (Katy),

News of the death of Charlotte Coleman in late 2001 – I dimly recall hearing about it in the news following the latest details of the aftermath of 9-11, which so dominated the news that fateful autumn – was received with a shock.  Shocking enough that she had died, and so tragically young (of an asthma attack) at just 33.  Yet somehow she seemed part of growing up, part of my growing up, or at least my generation.  I can still see her as the horrid child Marmalade Atkins in Children’s ITV’s Educating Marmalade when I was a kid as the sort of girl who would have been head girl at St Trinian’s if luck had been with her.  She exemplified something rebellious, and it’s that rebellion, that fierce, stubborn determination that exemplified what remains her finest hour. (more…)

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