Saturday, March 31, 2012

After the Curtain: The Music Man

The Music Man is my favorite musical. I grew up with Shirley Jones and Robert Preston and The Buffalo Bills and Hermione Gingold and Buddy Hackett and Ron Howard (ok, now I'm just seeing how many actors I can name). It's got a hate into love romance which is one of my favorite types, it's set in the 1910s which is one of my favorite decades, it has a marching band which is how I prefer my bands, it has fantastic and catchy music with big dance numbers and beautiful ballads and of course it has Harold Hill! Oh Harold Hill, he swindled his way into my heart long ago. I saw The Music Man  this past fall at USF with Brian Vaughn as Harold and it was fantastic. I even forgot Robert Preston! BUT you can't ignore the fact that the magic would eventually have to run out on this small town toe-tapper bc let's face it, what the heck is Harold going to do in River City?

The story of The Music Man:
Prof. Harold Hill, a two bit thimble rigger, comes to River City, IA to set up a boys' band. Thing is, he's a con man and knows nothing about music and the people of Iowa are hard nuts to crack. He gets everyone on board except Mayor Shinn whose business venture he's ruined and the old maid piano teacher and librarian who is skeptical of his musical "think system". His old partner in crime, Marcellus Washburn, helps him out while the local school board tries to smoke him out. Marian the Librarian's Irish mother and stuttering brother Winthrop are both taken with Harold, along with the gossips, including Mrs. Shinn, the local hooligan Tommy Djilas, and all the parents. Harold's scam is revealed when an anvil salesman stops in town to stick it to Hill for soiling the name of traveling salesmen. Harold is captured, but the angry mob is talked down by Marian, who of course has fallen in love with Harold. Miracle of miracles the think system works, sort of, and River City has themselves a boys' band! Ta ta DA!


Let's face it, the think system doesn't really work. Luckily the boys paid for instruction books as well, which Marian reviews like a mad woman and grills Harold on so he can actually have an occupation in town. It's rough going at first, but the people of River City aren't picky and eventually the band does alright, however most of the older boys are wiped out during WWI. After the war the band really gets going and establishes a legacy of marching band excellence in Iowa.

After realizing the think system won't get him anywhere with the band Harold skips town in a panic and decides to come up with a new scam. Marian hunts him down after a couple of days and proposes the instruction booklet plan. Marian and Harold get married, but Harold, or Gregory as he goes by now, has a hard time settling down. Every so often he pops over to Nebraska (where the real fun is) or even Chicago with a resolve to get his old life back, but he always returns to River City with a guilty conscious. Marian covers for him saying he's gone to musical conferences, but really she's the one keeping them and the band together. Besides Harold's wanderlust their marriage does alright. They have two children, a boy and a girl. The boy stays in River City and takes over the band, taking after Marian's steadiness. The girl, who takes after Harold travels to California and makes it big in talking pictures. Harold and Marian grow old in River City and a statue is erected to Harold after he dies, when we all know it should have been for Marian.

Marcellus marries Ethel and they have a great Iowan life.

Tommy Djilas and Zaneeta Shinn go steady until he gets drafted. They have a rush wedding and he's sent to France. He survives the war, but looses a leg. With his mechanical mindedness he fashions himself a state of the art prosthetic leg and becomes the leader in prosthetics for the tri-state area. Their children are pleasant but dull and thrive in River City.

Winthrop, after finding his voice, takes after Harold and becomes quite the smooth talker. A product of upright River City however he uses his powers for good and becomes the youngest senator Iowa's ever had. He's a major player in WWII politics and is known fondly in Washington as the Ginger Giant. He retires to River City in the 60s, a time of struggle for the band, and rejuvenates its popularity with his charisma, a la Harold. He doesn't marry Amaryllis bc she's obnoxious. He meets somebody at college and she's a wonderful politician's wife.

Mayor Shinn does not run for re-election after Harold endorses his pool hall. He and the anvil salesman team up and sell other pool hall paraphernalia to neighboring towns including paintings of dogs playing poker, stained glass light fixtures, and personalized cues. Mrs. Shin and the town gossips roll bandages and put up bunting during the war, become suffragettes during the women's vote movement, spearhead prohibition in Iowa and organize relief efforts during the Depression.

The members of the school board go on the road and become the nations most popular barber shop quartet.

Idea behind After the Curtain  and After White Christmas

Friday, March 30, 2012

Look at this

Hey! This is my good friend's blog. She and I share a lot of opinions, but we also differ. I leave most Project Runway and mainstream media entries to her. She likes Wes Anderson films and has a fashion degree. I don't know why I chose to share those two particular facts about her, but check out her blog, she's started updating regularly and so there you go!
Her latest entry is on bow-ties, which is brilliant and I'm jealous I didn't think of it first!

Thursday, March 29, 2012

trendi: nail art

About five or so years ago I noticed jewel-toned nails in Vogue. There was no sparkle, just high gloss dark nailed perfection. Then the colors got a little more varied, then we moved into some sparkles, then a few fun ideas started popping up and all hell broke loose.

first we started out with nice, high gloss, no nonsense colors, which I like and prefer still.
OPI Mrs. O'Leary's BBQ
Then the colors started to get a little more varied, which is fine and which I like for the occasional manicure.
OPI Don't Mess with OPI 
Then some sparkle came back, which is fine.
OPI Black Berry Chutney

And then someone figured out how to marble their nails. This is cool, and while I'd never take the time to do it, it's great. When I first saw this on a friend I lost my mind. Very unique and clever.

And then Pinterest happened and all hell broke loose...

These are awesome, but a waste of time...
 No adult should do this....
yes, cows.
then there are the different nails with themes...
Sponge Bob
And nails that need to be seen together to make the whole picture...
Hungry Hungry...
I've seen Cookie Monster, Totoro, pandas, Star Bucks, rubber duckies, TMNT, Pac Man, even The Shining! and all sorts of crazy French manicures...
actually love most of these...
So my verdict? If you're in middle school, or don't have a serious adult job and have the time and/or money to spend on these ridiculous nails then by all means do! and contribute to the archive of crazy trends in the world. The themes of these nails are love it or hate it I think. I prefer a solid color myself, esp in a nude, and if I were going to do something special it'd be along the lines of something Art Deco or there abouts, but I'm rather conservative when it comes to things that last a week at most and don't believe in acrylic nails.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Nacho Libre painting

I've been home painting movie posters for my sister's kids. Nacho Libre was up and I think I did a pretty swell job. I've also done Cars which was pretty flippin' fantastic! I won't have time to do a collage this trip, but I'm taking all my stuff to Cedar with me for the season so I'm hoping to get a lot done this summer and fall.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

British Names: making everyone else sound stupid bc we think all those letters must be there for a reason

Ok, long title...but I was thinking about the surname Wriothesley the other day, Henry Wriothesley being one of QEI's favorites, and it got me thinking about AWESOME British names, be they just amazing for the fact that they crammed so many words into one name, or so many unused letters or simply ignored the letters all together. I've been storing these names in my brain my entire life, but am still surprised by some of the different pronunciations. This list is by no means comprehensive, and is mostly ones that I like the most. Sources can be found at the bottom, and I'm not including all the names with errant e's at the end.

Wriothesley-rizzly, rizely, rosely, rotsy, rocksly pronunciations here
Davies- davis
Norwich - noridge
Cholmondely - chumly
Marjoribanks - marchbanks
Leveson-Gower - loosengaw
St. John - sin gin
Woolfardisworthy - woolsuri
Featherstonehaugh - fanshaw
Reading - redding (like the railroad in Monopoly, NOT the rEEding line)
Fotheringay-Phipps - fungy-fips (sounds like a Jeeves and Wooster name...Wooster - wuster)
Evelyn - eevlan (as a man's name, think Downton Abbey)
Woolfardisworthy - woolsuri
Menzies - mingus
Beaulieu - bewly
Dalziel - dee-el
Holborn - hoeburn
Towcester - toaster
Hugh - yew (some accents)

these two just crack me up:
Ralph - rafe
Ranulph - ralph

This is just a funny entry I found.
Wikipedia has a rather extensive list, but you need to bone up on your phonetic alphabet.
Find out what your English name is!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Titanic US air dates

ABC will be broadcasting Julian Fellowes' Titanic which premiered on ITV1 this weekend, to lack luster reviews. The four part series will be shown two parts at a time on Saturday April 14th and Sunday April 15th on ABC at 8/7c. Reviews in the UK for the first episode described the show as having too many characters to follow leading to not caring about any of them. Tellyspotting wasn't so hard on it, and I don't think I, or the American public will be either.

As it usually happens, I think epic mini-series like this spend the first episode introducing characters so that not that much really happens. The first hour is always Jane Eyre's bleak and rather boring, but necessary childhood. The one upside for being a US viewer is that on the whole PBS, and now it seems ABC, will give us the first two episodes as one so we can go straight into the happening of stuff. I'm surprised ABC hasn't started the TV promos for this, have you seen them? They do however have a website, with episode descriptions I've learned not to read beforehand. Are you excited for this? I'm prepared to be totally devastated by the end of it.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Sexy Sunday: March edition

It's been awhile. All my Sundays are sexy, but frankly I'm not into taking posey pictures of myself and getting other people to take them makes me feel awkward and I'm so tall it's hard to fit me in a normal camera frame in a flattering manner. Even photographers at shoots I've done have had a hard time.

Anydoctorwho, here's what I looked like for church today. I went home after the first hour bc I'm sick, so if I look a little down in the mouth, that's why.

Gold earrings: Target
Blouse: Target
Belt: Forever 21
Skirt: made by me
Golden Fly Bracelet (so Egyptian!): Banana Republic
Shoes: Nine West

Those are my new shoes! Well, the blouse and earrings are too, and I've worn the earrings everyday since I got them, but those are my new Nine West leather pumps and I love them. I always think of Mae West when I see Nine West, so in my mind it's kind of slutty but alluring brand.

For those of you in the know, yes I am visiting my 'rents in Nebraska and yes, those are baby pictures of my older sisters behind me. My photo's just behind my torso, which is a shame bc I was the most beautiful baby ever, true story, my nurse said so.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Project Runway Finale

Mondo won. MONDOWON!!!!! Now I'm less bitter that Gretchen won his season bc he's proved himself against all the other PR heavy weights. This season was genius. For a moment I've forgotten what the old seasons were like, then I remember that since its move to Lifetime PR has only had one good season: Mondo's.
I want to make this tomorrow!

The first season on Lifetime was the worst in PR history with the most terrible group of talent and the dumbest everything. I hardly remember anything from that season except they moved it to L.A. and the winner was a some woman whose family is from Jordan, everything else is underwhelmingly forgettable.

Then they moved back to NYC and we met Mondo! And there was Michael C and the other Michael that did all knits and that glorious hat challenge and evil evil Gretchen and crazy Ivy and the episode with the teams that could be a thesis paper on its parallels with WWII. Such a great season! No wonder Michael C, April, and Mondo all made it to All Stars.

Then there was Anya. BOO! There was a law past in the 50s preventing game shows from rigging their contestants and results and I think it should apply to reality shows bc Anya was terrible and the entire season was catered to keep her in the game, and then the finale was changed to give her a second chance bc she did nothing with the three months they gave her. Ug. I wasn't over the moon for Victor, but I really loved his stuff and felt like his original collection before they decided to give them more money and time for Anya's sake would have won.

Then there was All Stars. Lovely All Stars where we didn't have to worry about whether or not they could sew, or worry about getting to know the designers. We already knew them, we already loved them or we already hated them. I'm sad this season is over. It was like the much anticipated sequel to Mondo Part 1. I watched After the Runway following the finale and they showed Mondo's collections from his season and this one and the difference and growth was fabulous. It doesn't really make sense to have another All Stars for years, so here's hoping the next season goes back to the pre-Lifetime/Mondo type loveliness we expect. And Tim and Heidi will be back! New season this summer.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

New Girl

You watch New Girl right? RIGHT?! Seriously, the best new comedy of my life and the only one I've started from the beginning with. I love 30 Rock and Community, but I haven't been with them from the start. New Girl started last fall and I watch it on my Hulu every week and every week I laugh so so hard, out loud, by myself.
Nick, Schmidt, and Winston!
1) Zooey Deschanel is basically playing Zooey Deschanel. She's great.
2) The boys, oh my gosh the boys. The chemistry in this loft is outrageous. Schmidt and his chut-e-ny, Winston and his nannying, Nick and his...Nickness. It's so great. Nick and Schmidt's towel mix up?! Losing my mind. Nick getting locked outside w/ Jess and Justin Long at the Christmas party, laughing so hard. Why has no one made fan vids of just Nick being crazy? I checked, they haven't. There are however Nick and Jess fan vids. That needs to stop bc they're so far from getting together and you know that if and when they do the show is over.
3) Dermot Mulroney. Dermot Freakin' Mulroney. This week's episode was Fancyman, Part 1 with Dermot Mulroney as the Fancyman whom Nick falls in love with because "he smells like strong coffee and going to see a man about a horse" and his sweater smells like "Shakespeare, if Shakespeare were a damn cowboy and hawks nest and boat fuel, cigars and bourbon, man stuff ". Really Mr. Mulroney is one of Jess' student's parents she gets mixed up with. I've already watched the parts with Dermot Mulroney like 4 extra times.

"You fold that sweater, don't hang it, you listening to me? Fold it. I don't care, do whatever you want."
"Jess, you put it up to six happy faces! I've never had it past three!"
"It smells like leather, Teddy Roosevelt, wistfulness."
"This might complicate things, but I'm in love with him."
"A kitchen island? Be a man, let your counter attach to itself."
"I want to kill ya, because I respect you. I think I understand hunting!"
"Did you take bath in his tub because you wanted to see what it would be like to be him? Because weirdly I get that."
"I'ma push a piece of paper across the desk that I've written a little number on. I'm just going to tell you, it's five kabillion dollars."
"So whatya say? Is China mine? Mr. Ying?"

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

New Doctor Who Companion Announced!

Karen Gillian (who's only a month older than me and the same height!) is leaving Doctor Who sometime during the upcoming season which started filming in Wales last month. Head writer Steven Moffat has announced that Jenna-Louise Coleman will become the Doctor's new companion during next year's Christmas episode leading into the 50th Anniversary of Doctor Who. Coleman will be recognized in the upcoming Julian Fellowes' Titanic. 
BBC article here.

This just makes me miss Donna. You'd think I'd identify and enjoy watching a companion that's my own age, but I miss the chemistry a Donna type had with the Doctor, although I do imagine Catherine Tate and David Tennant's age differences are similar to Matt Smith's and these women. Oh well. Really I just pine for the good ol' 10th days. I have nothing against Matt Smith's Doctor, nor the writing in general for his seasons, I just miss 10's personality. The Doctor has moved to a different place. Matt Smith's Doctor is a different and more detached Doctor where Tennant was so empathetic and caring. Moving from the last episodes of 10 into 11 it's understandable that 11 has become more distant and disconnected from his companions and reality. He just sort of runs about doesn't he?

The Remains of the Day

Sometimes I'm absolutely not inspired to blog, then my mom happens upon The Remains of the Day on TV.

The summer before college I got a TV/DVD player and Blockbuster online and I, in effect, watched most of the important costume dramas to that point in time. Amongst them were many Merchant/Ivory films. I read and/or purchased the accompanying books; read A Room With a View, bought Howards End. 

I was determined to read The Remains of the Day by Kazuo Ishiguro before I watched the film and I couldn't wait to see it so I ran to the library and hunkered down...HOLD UP. I've been going through my journals and I cross referenced RofD that summer, but I guess I watched it the summer before my senior year, strange. Anyway, this is what I had to say after I read it...
Sunday 18 June 2006
Oh man, I just sobbed bitterly and uncontrollably for like five plus minutes at the end of The Remains of the Day. Are you joking me?...OH Stevens! I lost it, I was all sprawled on my bed from many a maneuver all night to try and get comfortable, my comforter all twisted, my mouth guard in, just sobbing and weeping uncontrollably...I just laid there all contorted absolutely blubbering... AOAoGH!

Huh, I can't find an entry about actually seeing the movie. I do say that the library didn't have it. Oh well, anyway....

The Remains of the Day is amazing. S'bout Stevens the butler and his butling. The book is his telling of the good ol' days of Darlington Hall right before the Second World War. You quickly realize that Stevens is the perfect butler because his sole, and I mean sole purpose in life is to be of the most assistance to his employer as possible no matter what his employer does, or what he feels for others. It's just profoundly heartbreaking and amazing. The film stars Anthony Hopkins as Stevens and Emma Thompson as Miss Kenton the housekeeper with James Fox as Lord Darlington and Hugh Grant as Lord Darlington's godson. It's absolutely magnificent. Hopkins and Thompson are my favorite on screen couple and are just, ah! just SO good! If you like Downton you'll LOVE this, it's pre-Julian Fellowes, back in the day when Merchant and Ivory were the name in aristocratic and posh British costume dramas.

Go read it, cry a lot.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Worth, you devil

The House of Worth, founded by papa Worth, Charles Frederick, basically invented Haute couture and rose to prestige in the second half of the 19th century and into the 20th. The thing to have was a Worth gown, queens and empresses flocked for Worth gowns and many of the best known gowns from this period are Worths. I could go on and on about Worth, but any costume historian worth their salt already knows it all, and non-historians should Wikipedia Worth for a good read.

Worth succeeded through innovative designs, but also, as all designers do, from drawing from the past. He was a leader in the historicism that was rampant at the time. Historical decades in general parallel others (entry to come), but Worth was great at basically stealing past gowns and updating them. This isn't a malicious accusation, it's a fact and it's a tactic used by costume and fashion designers to this day.

Here we have an 18th century robe a la polonaise in red and white and a Worth gown from one hundred years later with the same bold stripes, bustling and color family, hmm...
Bustles in general in the 70s and 80s were very reminiscent of the polonaise.
robe a la polonaise 1780, KCI
Worth 1888, Met Museum

Next we have a robe a'langlaise from the KCI. The Worth doesn't so overtly take from this gown specifically, but Worth's is obviously a 19th century anglaise down to the fichu.
robe a'langlaise 1780, KCI
Worth 1900, Met Museum

 There is a cape of Worth's that is a direct copy of a 16th century Spanish cape that he had access to at one time, and I once came upon a portrait of the 16th century owner wearing the cape (one of those things where you'd been flipping through Worth books the day before you happen upon this painting), but I can't find the portrait online and no longer have access to the reference I found it in originally. I know, this is all a tease, but I don't want to post it until I find the painting.

BAHAHAHA! Found it! I kept thinking it was of Robert Dudley, but nope, it was the other Elizabethan favorite, Walter Raleigh. Ok, so here you go, a painting of Walter Raleigh wearing a cape very similar to the Worth cape, then the fashion illustration of Worth's cape that was the cover of Harper's that season, then the cape itself. Click on the caption of the cape to go to the Met's explanation of the origins of the cape. The original apparently ended up in the Nuremberg Museum in 1903, which if you Google is very Nazi heavy, but I'll keep looking. Something similar here, in Dresden.

I'm not saying the Raleigh cape is the cape, but isn't it fun to have the portrait be so similar? Goes to show that it was either a popular style so he owned one, or it was a popular style so the portrait artist painted it in (as was often the case).

Sir Walter Raleigh, 1588
Worth 1895, Met

Monday, March 19, 2012

I Rock Long Hair Association

Ok, it had to be done.

President of the IRLHA:
Jason Isaacs of course!

such a beautiful wig, really.
the reason I watch this movie.
seriously, these wigs make me so so happy.

Jack Davenport

so dirty.
rocks the white wig
and army red (in Mary Bryant, strong adult content)

Secretary and Treasurer positions will be filled at a later date.

plaid shirt
Officers were chosen based on results of very scientific length and attractiveness formulas and on the fact that you can't beat green eyes.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Another weak chin: Jack Davenport

why hello there.
I'm adding Jack Davenport to my list of handsome weak chins. I never liked Orlando Bloom (or Keira Knightley for that matter) in Pirates and always thought Commadore Norrington should have gotten a girl (but not Keira Knightley, she's gross). He's pretty dopey in The Wedding Guest but is apparently hot to trot in SMASH, which I tried to watch but didn't get past half way through the pilot. Anydoctorwho, add Mr. Davenport to the Weak Chins/Strong Allure Club.

He's also in the I Rock Long Hair Association.

Guten Taaaag!

I was thinking of this commercial while eating my cereal this morning. Good times.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

The Graham Norton Show

Have you seen The Graham Norton Show? It's a British chat show hosted by hilarious Irish comedian Graham Norton available on YouTube. I've been watching it on and off for a couple of years, but have taken time to watch all of last season over two or three days last fall and just started the tenth series a couple of nights ago. Things that are great about The Graham Norton Show:
Let's start the show!

Graham Norton: frankly, hilarious. His opening monologue introduces the guests with other current news and it's not too long! Graham is incredibly enthusiastic but dry and genuinely interested (or not) in his guests. He's soso clever and quick, I bust out laughing often. He's amazing at keeping the chat going with his guests and always has another topic on hand.
Kate Winslet, Jamie Bell, and Rob Brydon

The guests: What's different and great about this show is that there are three or four guests that all come out at once. Graham spends time talking to each about their respective projects, they tell stories etc and they all respond off each other. It's such a great time! The guests are usually one Hollywood star, one British star (Hollywood optional) and one comedian (usually unknown to me, but that's fun!). The combinations of guests is also a great thing. Some combos are very pleasant and have great chemistry, but it's a RIOT when you've got Bear Grylls between Cameron Diaz and Kathy Griffin, or a Pussy Cat Doll w/ Tom Hanks and Simon Peg, both HUGE Trekies. A musical guest is also included that plays at the end. In cases like Adele, Lady Gaga, or Hugh Laurie the musical guest will sit on the couch and chat for the whole show before and after they perform, otherwise they join the couch just at the end.

Stories from the Red Chair: In the last five minutes of the show Graham gives audience members the opportunity to sit in the Red Chair and tell a story, to which Graham and the guests listen. If deemed unsuitable for any reason, any reason, Graham flips them off the chair. It's pretty great.

Favorite Graham moments:
:-: reading cue lines from Much Ado About Nothing to Catherine Tate and David Tennant to see if they've memorized their lines.
:-: Tom Hanks and Simon Peg debating Star Trek trivia as they quiz each other.
:-: Adele, her whole episode was hilarious, she's hilarious.
:-: Graham reading a couple's iPhone texts to each other in front of them.
:-: Graham and Liza Minelli, he adores her, and she was on something...
:-: Graham's suits, there's really nothing you can say to make you understand how fabulous some of them are.

It's all just such a fun romp! I love it.

Includes adult content (remember this is British primetime).

Friday, March 16, 2012

There is no place like Nebraska.

I like that in Nebraska I can see endlessly in any direction.
I don't like that there aren't mountains right in my face all the time.

I like the laid back attitudes of the Midwestern people in Nebraska.
I don't like that Midwestern people drive the speed limit or less.

I like the humidity and how my skin drinks up the  moisture.
I don't like that I feel sticky all the time.

I liked that the sun was up longer the day I drove here because daylight savings had just changed.
I don't like that I'm still stuck on pre-daylight savings mountain time making me two hours behind.

Memorial Stadium: Sea of Red
I like that this is the third largest city in Nebraska.
I don't like that this is the third largest city in Nebraska.

I like that my high school is flanked by a swamp, a cornfield, and a cemetery.
I don't like that I'm not here during thunderstorm season.

I like that my friend is serving in Omaha.
I don't like that I haven't gone up there yet, task for the day?

Thursday, March 15, 2012

BBC Radio 4

I recently made a 13 hour drive and occupied most of my time with new podcasts! I wanted to make you all aware of my two favorite so far from BBC Radio 4. If you weren't aware the BBC still produces radio dramas, comedies, series, and so forth. People go to school to become radio actors! And screen actors do radio as well; David Tennant and Benedict Cumberbatch come to mind.

I stumbled upon The Art of Monarchy with Will Gompertz, who if you frequent the BBC News Entertainment page you'll recognize as the BBC's art editor. I enjoy his pieces on BBC News and really have been enjoying The Art of Monarchy podcast available on iTunes. Each twenty minute podcast looks at six objects in the Royal Collection and how they reflect upon that week's theme. So far image, war, faith, magnificence and people have been addressed. Gompertz travels to various royal sites including Windsor, The Tower of London, Hampton Court, and Balmoral to view these objects. They are described and discussed by Gompertz and various curators of the Collection. Images of the objects are available on BBC Radio 4's website for the program. I really enjoyed this podcast and can't wait for the final installments. This podcast is a must listen for Anglophiles captivated by the monarchy and English history.

The second podcast I really enjoyed surprised me. I downloaded Weekly Drama which is a weekly hour long drama or play from Radio 3 or 4. The first episode I listened to was a political satire that was basically a review of the European economic crises using Dickensian names that really bored me. The second episode, and the most recent available was titled An American Rose and was a play by Charlotte Jones about Kennedy sisters Kick and Rosemary. I've blogged a little about Kick here, so I knew what was going to happen to her. I'd never heard of Rosemary before so was intrigued and heartbroken by her story. Whether you know all or nothing about the Kennedies this play was well constructed to guide the audience to the necessary information as you needed it. The Kennedies' accents were very strange. I've heard JFK, Bobby, and Ted talk, but the women, who are the only Kennedies you hear, were a very strange Southern, Transatlantic, hardly Boston kind of a sound, strange but whatever. Mrs. Kennedy was played by Fenella Woolgar, whom I saw in The Real Thing at the Old Vic. This podcast seems like it'll be rather hit and miss with content preferences, but I really enjoyed An American Rose.

I've also subscribed to Friday Night Comedy which is Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me  w/o the contestants. Comedy of the Week I started, but didn't like the play from that week.

Also, if you love Benedict Cumberbatch's voice (and if you don't you probably enjoy the sound of forks scratching plates), get his reading of Metamorphosis by Kafka on Sci-Fi Friday, only parts 1 and 2 have been put up so far.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Taran Killam

My sister and I have been noticing this unassuming SNL cast member creeping slowly into our hearts, so on last week's episode when he starred in what we're pretty sure was his first cold open as Rush Limbaugh we were so happy for him!
well done, Taran
Plays Japanese/American Jonathan Cavanaugh-san on J-Pop America Fun Time Now.

ah HA
 Great as Prince Charming in "The Real Housewives of Disney".

with Jean Dujardin

Plays Francois in "Les Jeunes De Paris"

He also did great as Michael Cera in the Zoey Deschanel episode. He's just one of my new faves.

I doubt he'll ever reach Jason Sudeikis status, but who really can?

Monday, March 12, 2012

Julian Fellowes' Titanic

I've known about this for awhile, but realized that I haven't told you yet! And the thing is upon us!

Julian Fellowes of Downton Abbey fame (well, and Gosford Park if we want to get to the bottom of why he's famous) wrote a Titanic series for the 100th anniversary of the sinking. The four part series will air on ITV1 (Downton's home) in April and in the US by April 14th (official anniversary, and tax day present!).  I'd say that's a darn good turn around for the US showing! Huzzah! It's basically Downton on the Titanic, following all classes and characters aboard. Article from Telly Spotting here.

Cast includes (so excited for some of these!).
David Calder, the dad from Bramwell, as Captain Smith, pretty dead ringer I'd say.

Toby Jones, from like everything.

Maria Doyle Kennedy, aka Mrs. Bates, aka my favorite gravel-y voiced lady actor.

Linus Roache from Law & Order, didn't know he was English, did ya?

Stephen Campbell Moore, He Knew He Was Right, Lark Rise to Candleford, and I saw him in All My Sons in London!

You'll recognize a lot of other people as well, including Lily Potter! Sad thing though is that at least all of the men will die, and inevitably some of the women too, so don't get too attached, but with Julian Fellowes at the wheel (or helm rather) you are going to get very attached, THEN they'll all die.