Post by Andy Howells on Nov 7, 2019 0:43:52 GMT 12
Looks like the Desert Island Discs archive have finally added the clip I sent in of John's appearance on the programme. At least now all the Dad's Army stars who appeared on the show are now represented in the archive - be it a part clip or full programme!
I went to a couple of the Richard Briers 'Brothers In Law' recordings, one with James Hayter - Mr Tibbs in AYBS, I recall the producer David Hatch stopped the recording after about 20 minutes & said there was a problem with a microphone & they had to send someone on a bicycle along to the BBC Piccadilly Studio to get a spare, meanwhile Richard Briers did a stand-up routine for 25 minutes then they had to start the programme from the beginning. all good fun
Hattie was also in Educating Archie with Tony Hancock in the early fifties along with Max Bygraves & Harry Secombe, I remember telling a chap at work that one of the most successful radio comedies featured a ventriloquist & his dummy, he thought the idea was hilarious..
Post by Dave Homewood on May 14, 2020 0:52:02 GMT 12
'Dad's Army' star never in the Home Guard
By FRANK CRANSTON, Defence and Aviation Correspondent
For a man known to millions as the mild mannered, if somewhat timid sergeant in the British television series, 'Dad's Army', actor John Le Mesurier is a bit of a paradox. Actors are usually not my lot but as John Le Mesurier was best known for his military portrayal and the primary purpose of his visit to Australia was to make a series of commercials for British Airways, it seemed natural to somebody that I should do the job.
He was everything I had imagined he should be. He was never in the Home Guard, a company of which is the basis for the series, and he was never a sergeant.
"I joined the Army full time in 1940", he said yesterday in Canberra. "They called me a trooper and then put me in a highly mechanised outfit. It seemed a bit hilarious at the time".
But he did have a sergeant to contend with and that, he believes, is why he never made the rank.
"He used to wave his arms around and shout a lot", he recalled yesterday, ''and then one day he called me out and said it was obvious I would never make corporal let alone sergeant and as he did not know what to do with me he supposed it would he best if they tried to make an officer of me".
And that was how he came to go to an officer training unit and wind up as a captain in India.
Comfortable war "I had a very comfortable war", he confided, "and I met all sorts of very nice people, especially out in India and up on the north-west frontier", he said, managing to make it sound like a line in 'Dad's Army'.
He has been particularly impressed with newspapers in Australia, particularly one in Sydney in which a reporter recalled his once having a part in a film in which he said. '"I don't trust these damned new-fangled flying machines".
"I can't imagine anybody having seen the thing let alone remembering it just as I was doing a series of airline commercials" he said.
The success of 'Dad's Army' apparently surprised him and the others who play in it. They thought at first that it might be good, for a series of about six to appeal to old men who had served in the Home Guard. He was even more surprised at its popularity in Australia.
Another series is now in production. He is bored with films which emphasise sexuality for its own sake. Nudity was justified if it had a real part in a scene but too many films were exploiting it. And he believes that actors should largely confine their activities to entertaining. "They should leave it to other people to lie on their backs in Trafalgar Square", he said.
Hopefully he expects to be back in Australia later in the year. There is the possibility of a film to be made "in an uncomfortable location about 400 miles south of Darwin", and possibly a play in Melbourne.
John is very good in the film I'm Alright Jack where he plays a time & motion man & also with Tony Hancock in The Punch & Judy Man where is the chap that works on the beach making sand sculptures.. you knew he would always be a class act
Post by Dave Homewood on Jul 26, 2020 9:06:43 GMT 12
I see that one of John Le Mesurier's very favourite jazz performers and friends, Annie Ross, passe away this week, aged 89. Annie collaborate with John on his album - along with pianist Alan Clare - of music and readings, called 'What Is Going To Become Of Us All?'. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Annie_Ross
Great stuff, Dave! I had no idea of this - funny thing - the other day I heard on the radio about the group ”Lambert, Hendricks&Ross” a vocal jazz trio from the ’50-’60ties. ”Ross” was actually Annie Ross, the same person mentioned above. You can find them on Spotify or youtube.