Monday, 28 January 2019

Tuesday, 22 January 2019

Yeah. You know Haus!

From the Bauhaus 100 site:
From foundation, the Bauhaus saw itself as a part of the modern movement and as its mediator. Created from the migration of artists and ideas, it developed in constant interaction with various groups of architects, urban planners, artists, scientists and designers. The constitutive ideas of the Bauhaus come from the Arts and Crafts Movement of the prewar period, especially the progressive education movement and the concept of the Gesamtkunstwerk (total work of art) that unites all of the arts as well as aesthetic education in all areas of life as represented by the Deutscher Werkbund (German Work Federation) and Art Nouveau...

...The return to craftsmanship was not connected with the intention of creating industrialised reproductions of past styles that evolved from craftsmanship but with the development of a new formal vocabulary based on experimentation and craftsmanship that would do justice to the industrial manufacturing process...

...The artist William Morris (1834–1896) was the founder and leader of a reform movement that aspired to counter the cultural damage caused by industrialisation. Starting in 1861, he revived historic handicraft techniques in his workshops and used them to produce high quality goods such as fabrics, carpets, glass paintings, furniture and everyday objects. In his own publishing company, Kelmscott Press, he produced books that paved the way for Art Nouveau.

Morris triggered a wave of reform that was to reach Germany later, where industrialisation had achieved a new quality after the foundation of the German Reich in 1871. Germany also recognised that well-designed industrial products represented a significant economic factor. The British educational system was analysed in order to reform the German schools of arts and crafts. An entire generation of painters now understood that the applied arts were their most important task. The Dresden Workshops (1898), whose ‘machine furniture’ was designed by Richard Riemerschmid, are the best-known example of the many workshops established on German soil. In 1903, the Wiener Werkstätte (Viennese Workshop) was established in Austria with Josef Hoffmann and Koloman Moser as its most important representatives.

The Weimar State Bauhaus was founded [in 1919] by Walter Gropius with the goal of overcoming the division between the artisan and the artist. The employees of the Bauhaus wanted to eliminate social differences through their creative work.
But, as they say, "all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy". And in the hands of Oskar Schlemmer (Master of the mural-painting and sculpture departments at the Bauhaus), the enthusiasms of the students "at play" certainly knew no bounds...

I feel a future theme for Gay Pride outfits coming on...

Wednesday, 16 January 2019

Tuesday, 15 January 2019

I am terribly shy, but of course no one believes me

"Laughter is much more important than applause. Applause is almost a duty. Laughter is a reward."

"You know, if you're lucky enough to have two smash hit shows, the traffic of the world goes through your dressing room."

"I am terribly shy, but of course no one believes me. Come to think of it, neither would I."

"I did 10 shows on Broadway and sure, not all of them were hits. But I wouldn’t change a thing. I got to work with George Burns and Mary Tyler Moore. I received a Golden Globe and an Oscar nomination, and so much more. How could I possibly have regrets?"

"Johnny Depp has said he wants to play me in a movie. Wouldn't that be great? People say, "But he is a man," but it doesn't surprise me at all. I can’t remember the last time one of my impersonators didn't have a 5 o'clock shadow."

Very sad news. One of our most entertaining of Patron Saints Miss Carol Channing is dead, just a few weeks short of her 98th birthday.

Over the years (and years and years) she was in the business, she brought nothing but pure joy. I never heard anyone who worked with her say anything about her but compliments - and even in her 90s, she was bemused when someone wanted to make a documentary film about her life. Of the director Dori Berinstein she said: "I don’t know how she put up with me. I really didn’t think anyone would care about watching my story. But she was passionate enough for the both of us, and she proved me wrong."

On stage, as well as large or small screen, she was unstoppable - she was still purported to be taking another go at "Dolly" just two years ago, ffs!

We adored the woman, her style, her talents, her sheer chutzpah - to mention just one notable role, her performance as "Muzzy" in Thoroughly Modern Millie was one of her finest moments. She herself always counted "Dolly Levi" as her own personal triumph (despite having lost the part in the film version of Hello, Dolly! to a woefully miscast MegaBabs).

From a purely camp perspective, she is dear to our hearts for a few screen moments in particular, not least this magnificent number:

Then, there's this show-stopping ensemble turn (possibly my most beloved clip of all time):

And, of course, this!

RIP, Carol Elaine Channing (31st January 1921 – 15th January 2019)

Tuesday, 8 January 2019

I can only watch you with my nose pressed up against the window pane

From the biography Miss Shirley Bassey by John L Williams:
[Shirley Bassey's then-husband] Kenneth Hume... began to develop something called The Secret Keepers. This was to have been a TV comedy series featuring Alma Cogan as a private eye. Hume would appear to have shot a pilot episode though one that never seems to have been broadcast. However, the Daily Mail ran a story about the show, illustrated with location photos. One of these still features Shirley holding up a sign saying "Husband and four agents to support."

According to the supporting text, the show featured Alma Cogan's P.I. hunting down a runaway husband played by Frankie Howerd. In the course of her search she bumps into Shirley, playing a street busker (thus the sign). Alma offers her a penny for a song and Shirley responds by throwing a brick through her window.

How verrry camp! I'd love to have seen that episode. Just two months later, however...
...the papers were full of the story of their marriage breaking down: "I won't go back to him. My marriage is over. I have given my wedding and engagement rings back to my husband. My belongings are packed and ready to be taken away at our house."
So what happened? According to Miss Bassey's then-manager Mike Sullivan:
"Early one evening I took a telephone call from her home in West London. She was hysterical and distraught. She had caught Hume in bed, making love to her chauffeur."

The biography goes on:
Shirley's life... had been one of non-stop drama, and now her music was starting to reflect that. From this point on, she joined the company of Judy Garland, Edit Piaf et al., women whose music was inseparable from their turbulent lives. In I (Who Have Nothing), Shirley the woman and Shirley the singer are indistinguishable. We know it from that first dramatic syllable - "I" - and from here on in, neither she nor her audience would be in danger of forgetting it. I (Who Have Nothing) is, if you like, her masterpiece; a gaudy, sentimental and magnificent statement of pure ego.
What else to play, dear reader, on the occasion of Dame Shirley Bassey's 82nd birthday, than that very song?

Happy birthday, Dame Shirley Veronica Bassey DBE (born 8th January 1937). All hail.

Tuesday, 1 January 2019

Happy New Year!

...courtesy of the best fireworks display in the world, here in London:

We toasted the New Year in with champers and a fab party. The fireworks were remarkable; such a shame the chosen music wasn't...

Music Played:
  • Daft Punk - Give Life Back to Music
  • Dua Lipa - New Rules (MRK Club Remix)
  • Culture Shock - There For You
  • Zedd & Alessia Cara - Stay
  • Serge Gainsbourg & Jane Birkin - Je t'aime moi non plus
  • N.W.A - Something 2 Dance 2
  • Justice vs Simian - We Are Your Friends
  • Liam Payne & Rita Ora - For You (Fifty Shades Freed)
  • Chase & Status - Heater (feat. General Levy)
  • David Guetta - Don't Leave Me Alone (feat. Anne‐Marie)
  • U2 - Vertigo
  • Sigala & Paloma Faith - Lullaby
  • Coldplay vs Swedish House Mafia - Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall
  • The Beatles - All You Need Is Love

We at Dolores Delargo Towers wish you, dear reader, a happy 2019.