FRANK SINATRA April 20, 1949
FRANK SINATRA April 20, 1949
CHARLIE SHAVERS. “Baby Won’t You Please Come Home.” The Definitive Black and Blue Sessions. Recorded in Bordeaux, 1970.
By Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger
LONDON SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA. This is a pas de deux from Act III of Swan Lake. It is very difficult for one swan to do a pas de deux, but this Italian swan is capable. After all, he (or she?) is the only component in this photo which is in sharp focus. Recently we posted a photograph of a seagull in a boat, misidentified as a duck. But a swan?—–never mistaken for a duck.
Has professional ballet ever been done in Ocean Grove? I’ve never seen it mentioned in the OG history books. We certainly had a lot of opera and choral music, but vocalizing was always emphasized here thanks to Tali Essen Morgan, whose buddy was Caruso. There is no mention of Tali hanging out in the Grove with prima ballerinas.
Swan Lake made its debut in Moscow in 1877 by the Bolshoi. Tchaikovsky wrote it, and it has been almost constantly on tour ever since. Maybe someday we will have Swan Lake on the stage in the magnificent Great Auditorium of Ocean Grove, New Jersey.
We had 87 visitors from Israel, so since it’s Passover, here’s a tune that you might recognize if you have ever attended a bar mitzvah or a Jewish wedding. You can get up and dance a hora–you join hands and go round and round in a circle. Not very good if you suffer from motion sickness as I do. Or you can let some shtarkers* carry you around in a chair–a fairly terrifying experience.
* shtarker: a Yiddish word for a strong person, usually a male. I used to be a shtarker who could help carry the bride around, but now I sit at my table and nurse a scotch and water while checking out the dancers. Here is Hava Nagila. (which means “Let’s rejoice” which is what my people like to do–which is good to do after 4,000 years of ups and downs.) —-Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger.
It seems that the North End Hotel Pool photo has awakened almost 10 responses. Let me throw a postcard (being sold on ebay) made from a painting done in 1951 of the Hotel showing a bit of water bordering the lower rooms of the hotel. Anyone want to jump in on this and tell us where or what that water is doing there?
By Ross Anzaldi, commentator on Blogfinger (FOB)
Yeah, I know, you’ve all seen at least one of the “Rocky” movies. Some have enjoyed the simplistic tale of a guy struggling to be somebody, but just one punch shy of being a bum. But, make it into a Broadway musical? No way! Yes , way!
The lyricist and composer are the same duo that brought us Ragtime and received Academy Award nominations for the animated feature Anastasia. Some lovely songs which will have a life of their own post theater are “Adrian,” “Fight From the Heart” and “Keep on Standing” are of particular note. Interwoven are the songs made familiar from the Rocky movies, “Eye of the Tiger” and “Going to Fly Now.”
There is little dancing, but a lot of choreography. The boxers shadow boxing in the gym, up to the fantastic championship fight all perform with athleticism and yes, grace.
The play follows Rocky on his journey from a collector of debts for a local mobster, to a one in a thousand chance to fight for the heavyweight championship of the world. You get caught up rooting for the underdog.
As the fight is about to commence, the first ten rows in the orchestra section are emptied, and all the folks there are reseated on the stage facing the audience. The ring is then moved forward into the audience. You are now at the fight, and what a spectacle it is.
Punches seem to land with ferocity. Apollo Creed is invincible. Only one person doesn’t know it—-Rocky. How do the actors Andy Karl (Rocky) and Terence Archie (Apollo Creed) seem to stand and exchange those powerful punches? Yet they do and they do it 7-8 times a week.
It is a love story. It’s a story about overcoming life’s obstacles. It is a story that had the sophisticated New York audience on its feet cheering for that almost bum, Rocky to just last 15 rounds and Keep on Standing.
SURVIVOR “Eye of the Tiger” from the Rocky movie soundtrack and also featured in the current Broadway show.