Monthly Archives: July 2012

‘Still Fairer Hopes’ – George Gershwin 75 years after his death

(this article is published online by Gramophone magazine) During the thirteen years of their almost exclusive collaboration, George and Ira Gershwin produced nearly one thousand songs, for a dozen shows and four films. Imagine the fruits of that partnership if George had been granted even ten more years – let alone forty.             Someone once […]

THIS MONTH’S PARODY (July) The Green Eye of the Little Yellow God

THE GREEN EYE OF THE LITTLE YELLOW GOD is a poem written in 1911 by the English actor and poet J(ohn) Milton Hayes (1884-1940). It was a great favourite of the actor Bransby Williams, perhaps the most famous ‘monologist’ of the time, during the early years of the 20th century.  Obviously inspired by the ballads of Rudyard Kipling, […]

Kingdom of Cock-ups

I swore I wouldn’t write a blog about the Olympics but, sorry, I’ve got to get it all off my chest. Before a starting pistol has been fired or drug test shown positive, the whole things has already left a very nasty taste. As far as the actual sporting competition is concerned, I’m sure I’ll […]

Richard 11 and This England

Shakespeare’s plays (like opera) rarely work on the small screen. Even in the cinema they tend to be heavy-handed with performances played at the same level as on stage. The production of Richard 11  on Saturday night (BBC2) was a shining, magnificent exception. On every level – performances, costumes, direction, decor, lighting, editing, verse speaking – the […]