Sunday, January 17, 2010

Twitter Glitter, Twitter Litter ...Gods and Quads, Tigers and Teas ... Come On In, Please

Showbiz David Out of the Past: first published January 17, 2010

Dreamy rain outside on Piedmont Avenue ... Ella Fitzgerald in here floating another great song over tea aromas ... Sunday morning soft at L’Amyx ...

Circuses sleeping, and I’m hoping they all wake up again. Yeah, I get nervous around this time; I’m funny that way. Really, I want ‘em all to return, even those that may have let me down in times past. There’s always another season to make things right. Another tour to redeem and redream. A young Japanese singer in her own language crooning a country song and making it sound sooooooooooo beautiful, and so wonderfully not country. Yet for her to discover and mine: Rodgers & Hart ... Sorry, if anybody down there in Tex or Ok is reading this; call me a retro elitist, y'all.

How tough is the tanbark still? Let’s talk tiger trainers. Something about the way the attack of Christian Walliser by three charges after falling in front of five, that “nearly killed” him, stirs boyhood memories of Clyde Beatty. And, oh, am I sorry that Henry Edgar could not have lived a few more months to share with us this ersatz Beatty Big Cage peril from days past when newspapers front paged Beatty's mishaps and the stitches that ensued. The "circus" in circus is showing its muscle these days. The pachyderms, given a reprieve by some DC judge (honest or paid off, but who will ever know?), the tiger man, and ...

And the Quad is God again, thanks, at least while it lasts, to Ivo Silva, Jr., of the Flying Caceres — did they not recently field a female flyer who flew the triple? Quad prince Ivo is now infusing Funundrum, Ringling latest, with the kind of excitement that may only thrill the buff class. Nor does it seem to have garnered national attention; that went to Miguel Vazquez back in the excellent eighties. Funundrum itself is landing high marks from bloggers. It has voice authority: I peeked briefly at a YouTube teaser, where the voice of returning Jonathan Lee Iverson in red hat sounds like I hoped it would -- full and solid, unique to the sawdust and shy of his older gossip hall shadings. He has the potential to achieve greatness.

So, we're talking a little tough stuff again, right? Cheers to Christian and Ivo! ... But why must Feld Entertainmentt not allow its photos to be “saved to.” I could only, when preparing this post, extract one image of Ivo, and not a good one, from a hectic internet search. Would Ringling not welcome my undivided attention in Oaktown? Feld Central: You want publicity? PUT SOME PHOTOS OUT TO THE PUBLIC ... [Documentary film maker Philip Weyland came to my rescue, sending me a link to a couple of photos embedded in a story.] The question now is, can Prince Ivo make a career of his great feat as did the magnificently accomplished Miguel? The story is back in motion, and Weyland, at work on a bio of Miguel ("The Last Great Flyer") may yet be challenged to amend. I’m actually looking forward to Funundrum ...

We gotta go in reverse, back to the tiger man’s tale: Fearless Christian is already out of hospital, appearing with Circus Barelli in Augusburg, donning a “complicated splint” and a redoubtable smile on his proud face ... Now here’s the moment for circus fan Andrew Wightman of Charlottetown in Canada, e-mailing me to ask, “Did Terrell Jacobs who trained more than 50 Big cats for the Ringling Brothers & Barnum and Bailey train the big cats the same way as Clyde Beatty or did he do it like the Hegenbach's did?” Not sure if Andrew has reaped an answer from The CHS website, to which I directed him, but I told him I’d post the question right here. Anybody has an answer?

Relax and smell the smog. “I didn’t know what time it was, till I met you,” sings Ella, and I’m waiting for Rod Stewart, whose music I danced to in disco days gone by, to sing, "my funny valentine, sweet comic valentine ..." Of many younger singers addressing the Great American Songbook these days, Stewart's treatment is positively authentic and sweetly lyrical. A+++

Speaking of Broadway tunes, Great White Way vet and one-time Ringling ringmaster, Eric Michael Gillett to guest direct the next Big Apple Circus banquet to be served up come autumn in New York (couldn't resist that). Gillett bringing with him a stellar staff loaded with Tony credits, among them Todd Rosenthal on sets, Ann Hould-Ward on costumes and Peter Pucci on dance. What a "wow!" of a production shakeup. Leave me alone, New York! ... And the soft rain out there reminds me that, at any moment, a Kelly Miller Circus truck bound for mudsville might flash up the street ... I’m wondering about a noted aerialist whom John Ringling North II was said earlier to be in negotiations with for a stint. Wondering if the guy has signed, been fitted for flood boots and handed a shovel? Okay, Okay, balance here: Jim Royal last season reminded me that once upon a season, Ringling-Barnum also appeared in the mud. My one visit under Big Bertha’s blue big top came with trucked in sawdust. So spoiled was I.

Ella’s soft, sweet pipes float on under a tea tent... Only bogus Bay Area rain out there, Sorry, Kelly Miller, we tried to secure you suitable quicksand for a day of high adventure at the circus, and failed. Can you do concrete?.

Tweet twot twat twer tttttttttt ...... Anybody still there? I'm going out to practice my single ...


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