Archive for the 'dead people' Category

How the Whingers want to go

Monday 20 August 2007

Following on with the John Waters theme: the Pope of Trash has been very busy doing a lot of droll interviews lately, but one of our most favourite bon mots comes from an interview in Scotland on Sunday. Read the rest of this entry »

The theatrical event of the whinging year

Saturday 21 April 2007

InvitationWell, it’s all go at the Whingers’ respective headquarters in Kentish Town and Vauxhall as preparations for tonight’s party go into overdrive.  Moods are rather fractious as it’s 10.15am and in deference to their duties this evening neither Phil nor Andrew has had a drink all day. Read the rest of this entry »

Kitty Carlisle Hart – an appreciation

Saturday 21 April 2007

Kitty Carlisle HartWe were a bit concerned that our obituary of Kitty Carlisle Hart might have been a bit short on facts (we basically said we thought she sounded fabulous whoever she was).

So, never ones to shirk from hard work and in-depth research, The West End Whingers have commissioned a testimonial from a real live ex-patriate (the best kind) American living in London and writing under the pseudonym of The Merm.

Why does everyone writing for the Whingers insist on using a nom de plume? Read the rest of this entry »

Goodbye, Kitty Carlisle Hart

Thursday 19 April 2007

Goodbye and RIPSo goodbye, Kitty Carlisle Hart.

The West End Whingers salute you.

We had only a hazy idea of who you were until you died.

But now that we read the obituaries we realise you were fabulous.

And the winner is…

Friday 13 April 2007

Our competition inviting suggestions for the ideal people to play Bette Davis and Joan Crawford produced some interesting results.

Fans have been indulging in frantic activity on their (sadly imaginary) casting couches and coming up with everyone from Gillian Anderson to Bea Arthur (OK, that’s not a very good example because they both begin with “A”) to… Tony Curtis (Damn, only begins with “C”. Oh well, you get the point).

Anyway, today being Friday 13th, we are proud to reveal the judgement of no-less-an-expert than Mr Shaun Considine himself, author of Bette & Joan: The Divine Feud who has generously donated a signed (by him, not by the Whingers) US hardback copy as a prize. Read the rest of this entry »

A bit of a do: an invitation to the theatrical blogosphere

Sunday 25 March 2007

InvitationStrange thing about the blogosphere. There’s all these people you kind of “know” but that you’ve never met who you can’t contact privately.

Oh well. If you are part of the scene, you’re invited to a party – blogging reviewers, readers, actors, playwrights; we’re not fussy. We’ll whinge to anyone. Read the rest of this entry »

Billie Piper – Name above the title.

Sunday 11 March 2007

It’s not a huge vote of confidence in Billie Piper (or perhaps it’s merely recognition of why audiences are bothering to turn up at all), that the producers of Treats at the Garrick Theatre have taken the unusual step of publicly offering punters tickets for an alternative performance if the leading lady doesn’t show. Read the rest of this entry »

John Inman dead at 71

Thursday 8 March 2007

areyoubeingserved_1.jpgGoodbye to John “I’m free” Inman who died in the early hours of this morning at St Mary’s Hospital, Paddington.

He was iconically famous as the dreadfully camp (but not gay of course!) Mr Humphries in the camp 70’s BBC TV sit-com Are You Being Served ? which – in those long off days before satellite and cable channels – was able to draw audiences of over 20 million viewers at its zenith. Ah, those were the days. Read the rest of this entry »

Goodbye Ian Richardson

Friday 9 February 2007

Ian RichardsonGoodbye, Ian Richardson CBE. The West End Whingers salute you.

He was best know to television viewers as Francis Urquhart in the House of Cards trilogy, but in the theatre he had some notable successes. He played Marat in Peter Brook’s famous Marat Sade (which luckily we didn’t see – terribly experimental) and was nominated for a Tony award for his portrayal of Henry Higgins in My Fair Lady on Broadway. We didn’t see that either.

What a shame that we did see one of his last stage appearances – the pointless and execrable revival of the not-only-creaky-but-bordering-on-offensive The Creeper at The Playhouse. He was also woefully underused in last year’s National Theatre production of The Alchemist.

His celluloid swansong, Becoming Jane, will be released in the UK in March (with Dame Maggie Smith and Julie Walters!)

According to his agent, he had not been ill. Could his unexpected death be related to the fact that he was due to start filming an episode of the (in)terminably dreary Midsomer Murders? We could not possibly comment.

Dead and buried

Monday 29 January 2007

Today is notable for being the eighth anniversary of the death of stripper and burlesque artist Lily St Cyr (worthy of a national holiday, we feel).

It prompts us to reflect on that feeling we get when we hear that someone famous has died and our first thought is, “Again?”. That was certainly our response to the recent death of Yvonne de Carlo.

The West End Whingers often experience this because so many of their icons are – to put it politely – in the autumn or winter of their years and many of them haven’t been seen in public for years.

That’s why one of our favourite websites is the wonderful Dead or Alive? which helps to settle many an argument. Eve Arden? Died in 1990, apparently. Deanna Durbin? Jane Wyman? Both still going.

Had the internet been invented for just this purpose, it would still have been a worhtwhile invention, in our view.

We often follow up with a look at Find A Grave which tells you where the departed ones are buried. Did you know that Boris Karloff’s last resting place is Guildford Crematorium‘s Garden of Remembrance (his name is on a marker under a rosebush in plot 2, on the left hand side) and that Margaret Lockwood is buried in Putney Vale Cemetery?

Goodbye Yvonne De Carlo

Thursday 11 January 2007

Yvonne De CarloGoodbye, Yvonne De Carlo;

You were in the original production of Follies;

You sang “I’m Still Here”;

But unfortunately you’re not any more.

(with apologies to E.J. Thribb)

Yvonne De Carlo (nee Peggy Yvonne Middleton)
B. 1 September 1922
D. 8 January 2007

And here is the woman herself singing that tune at the Hollywood Bowl. Shame someone accidentally taped over the middle of it…

Goodbye Vincent Sardi Jr

Saturday 6 January 2007

Andrew snapped at Sardi’s

Black is the new black. The West End Whingers are in full mourning garb at the sad news of the demise of Vincent Sardi Jr at the tender age of just 91.

Sardi Jr was, of course, owner of the famous New York restaurant Sardi’s which – like many Broadway movers and shakers – Phil and Andrew loved to frequent whenever they were in town until their stalker Liliane Montevecchi went and spoiled it all by bribing the waiters to put her on the table next to theirs whenever they dropped in for lunch. Read the rest of this entry »