Do you know The Treniers
? Back in the 40s and 50s, they straddled the lines between jump blues, swing, early rock'n'roll, jazz dance, hep jive and comedy. They were a whole hella fun
, and they happened to be the backing band for what must be the best dance performance Jerry Lewis
ever gave the world. That particular clip, BTW, from a Dean Martin/Jerry Lewis "Colgate Comedy Hour" in 1954, is purported to be the first rock'n'roll performance on national television, and it may well have been.
After Kad & Olivier sign off and the Satisfaction production logo fades, viewing audiences are oftentimes treated to a cold open of an empty talk show set... one that quickly becomes the impromptu dance floor for a shameless Frenchman making an absolute giddy fool of himself while lip-syncing pop songs alongside a menagerie of... wait, *what*?!
That's right. The Late Late Show
's Craig Ferguson appears to have a not-so-secret French admirer
-- one who's not above ripping off both his opening titles and his signature dance sequences
(including the iconic animal puppets
by The Jackson 5, "Flashdance"
by Irene Cara, "On the Floor"
by Jennifer Lopez and Pitbull, "Waka Waka"
by Shakira, "Men in Black"
by Will Smith, "Let's All Chant"
by the Michael Zager Band, "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go"
by Wham!, "It's Raining Men"
by The Weather Girls, and "Vive Le Vent (Jingle Bells)"
by Tino Rossi.
Luckily, Ferguson's sense of showmanship is more prodigious than litigious
-- he responded to Arthur's "homáge
" by booking a pair of translatlantic crossover shows, with Arthur visiting LA that week and Ferguson flying out to Paris just last month. Video of both shows (plus lots more) inside! [more inside]
About twenty years ago, HBO aired The Mondo Beyondo Show
, a sort-of send-up of avant-garde performance shows like Alive From Off Center
and Night Flight
. Hosted by Bette Midler (as the character Mondo Beyondo
), it showcased artists that covered the broad spectrum between performance art, dance, and absurdist comedy. Strap on your Eighties Goggles; here's the meat of the show:
| La La La Human Steps
| The Kipper Kids
| Yes/No People
| Paul Zaloom
| David Cale
| and the Divine Miss M as Eudora P. Quickly [more inside]
Harlem Variety Revue
. Pre-rock & roll TV show featuring swing from Duke Ellington
, Count Basie
, Lionel Hampton
, Cab Calloway
, and Sarah Vaughan
. Rhythm & blues from Amos Milburn
, Ruth Brown
, Joe Turner
, Martha Davis
and Larry Darnell
from Nat Cole. Ballad by Dinah Washington
. Doo wop from The Clovers
. Harmony from the Larks
and the Delta Rhythm Boys
(complete with exciting choreography). Comedy provided by Nipsey Russell & Mantan Moreland
, tapdancing by Coles & Atkins
and Bill Bailey
(check out that 1955 Moonwalk
at the end!) Hosted by Willie Bryant
Machine as romantic object.
The short film “Deere John” explores how narrative archetype can humanize the inanimate (and is funny).
The Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo,
with Margeaux Mundeyn, Pavel Törd, Ida Nevasayneva, Vladimir Legupski, Sveltlana Lofatkina, Olga Supphozova, Lariska Dumbchenko, Fifi Barkova is reviewed by Joan Acocella, "they pass through the joke and come out the other side, where the subject, having been laughed at, is once again embraced, enthroned." pic 1, and 2