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Meredith Willson

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ENTERTAINMENT
June 16, 1994 | CORINNE FLOCKEN, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Led by a clutch of capable teen-age actors, the Buena Park Youth Theatre's staging of "The Music Man" is as warm and satisfying as a stack of flapjacks on a cold I-o-way morning. First produced in 1957, Meredith Willson's "The Music Man" contains scraps Willson remembered from his own Iowa boyhood, and this staging, directed by Ruth Walp, does a crackerjack job of capturing the nostalgia believably and with the right touch of irony.
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NEWS
March 17, 2002 | STEPHANIE SIMON, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Former Mayor Carl Miller raises an eyebrow and jerks his head toward the Pleez-All Billiard Parlor. "This," he says, "is where all the trouble started." That's Trouble with a capital "T" and that rhymes with "P" and that stands for Pool. And indeed, there it is: a pool table. Enticing young boys to fritter away their chore time. Undermining staunch Midwest morality. And, just maybe, giving this careworn town--one of the biggest cement producers in the nation--a shot at cultural glory.
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NEWS
May 8, 1987 | Associated Press
"The Music Man," the first American musical ever staged in China, opened today with an old-fashioned production of the 1957 Broadway show about swindler-salesman Harold Hill and his escapades in River City. "Seventy-Six Trombones" rang through Beijing's Tianchao Theater as the all-Chinese cast of 60, many of them in blond, red and light brown wigs, danced and sang to Meredith Willson's score. The lyrics were translated into Chinese, and the audience applauded loudly.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 11, 1998 | CYNTHIA KELLY
Like a child overshadowed by a more famous older sibling, "The Unsinkable Molly Brown" has been passed over by many musical theater companies eager to mount Meredith Willson's other musical, "The Music Man." Jan Duncan, director of the Fullerton Civic Light Opera's production of "The Unsinkable Molly Brown," says the need for strong leads and the high cost of the sets explain the relative scarcity of "Molly Brown" productions.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 16, 1986 | TERRY ATKINSON, Compiled by Terry Atkinson
"The Music Man." Warner. $24.98. While one may grumble at a few saggy spots, a couple of below-par songs and the ultimate message--that our lives are better off with con men than without them!--everything else about this splashy, 151-minute 1962 musical is as irresistible as the charm of Robert Preston's trickster-with-a-heart-of-gold band-instrument salesman. As with "Auntie Mame," Morton da Costa moved his director's chair from Broadway to Hollywood with sparkling cinematic results.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 15, 1995 | CORINNE FLOCKEN, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Holiday traditions come and go (remember aluminum Christmas trees?), but for many the season wouldn't be complete without a viewing of "Miracle on 34th Street." The fantasy, originally a book by Valentine Davis and first filmed in 1947, is about a department store Santa who revives a girl's faith in the season by claiming to be the genuine article. The story has been retold many times on stage and screen, including last year's update.
NEWS
April 22, 1987 | Associated Press
President Reagan will award posthumous Medals of Freedom to actor Danny Kaye and composer Meredith Willson, the White House announced Tuesday. Others chosen for the nation's highest civilian honor are conductor Mstislav Rostropovich, Frederick Patterson, founder of the United Negro College Fund, and Nathan Perlmutter, executive director of the Anti-Defamation League. The awards will be presented June 23 at the White House, the announcement said.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 11, 1998 | CYNTHIA KELLY
Like a child overshadowed by a more famous older sibling, "The Unsinkable Molly Brown" has been passed over by many musical theater companies eager to mount Meredith Willson's other musical, "The Music Man." Jan Duncan, director of the Fullerton Civic Light Opera's production of "The Unsinkable Molly Brown," says the need for strong leads and the high cost of the sets explain the relative scarcity of "Molly Brown" productions.
NEWS
June 7, 1987 | CHARLES HILLINGER, Times Staff Writer
It's easy to visualize Meredith Willson guiding a marching band down Main Street here, playing "Seventy-six Trombones." Leading the big parade at the North Iowa Band Festival in Mason City was a special treat for Willson during the '50s, '60s and '70s. The north central Iowa farm center of Mason City, population 30,000, was the author-lyricist-composer's home town--his real-life River City.
NEWS
March 17, 2002 | STEPHANIE SIMON, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Former Mayor Carl Miller raises an eyebrow and jerks his head toward the Pleez-All Billiard Parlor. "This," he says, "is where all the trouble started." That's Trouble with a capital "T" and that rhymes with "P" and that stands for Pool. And indeed, there it is: a pool table. Enticing young boys to fritter away their chore time. Undermining staunch Midwest morality. And, just maybe, giving this careworn town--one of the biggest cement producers in the nation--a shot at cultural glory.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 15, 1995 | CORINNE FLOCKEN, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Holiday traditions come and go (remember aluminum Christmas trees?), but for many the season wouldn't be complete without a viewing of "Miracle on 34th Street." The fantasy, originally a book by Valentine Davis and first filmed in 1947, is about a department store Santa who revives a girl's faith in the season by claiming to be the genuine article. The story has been retold many times on stage and screen, including last year's update.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 16, 1994 | CORINNE FLOCKEN, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Led by a clutch of capable teen-age actors, the Buena Park Youth Theatre's staging of "The Music Man" is as warm and satisfying as a stack of flapjacks on a cold I-o-way morning. First produced in 1957, Meredith Willson's "The Music Man" contains scraps Willson remembered from his own Iowa boyhood, and this staging, directed by Ruth Walp, does a crackerjack job of capturing the nostalgia believably and with the right touch of irony.
NEWS
June 7, 1987 | CHARLES HILLINGER, Times Staff Writer
It's easy to visualize Meredith Willson guiding a marching band down Main Street here, playing "Seventy-six Trombones." Leading the big parade at the North Iowa Band Festival in Mason City was a special treat for Willson during the '50s, '60s and '70s. The north central Iowa farm center of Mason City, population 30,000, was the author-lyricist-composer's home town--his real-life River City.
NEWS
May 8, 1987 | Associated Press
"The Music Man," the first American musical ever staged in China, opened today with an old-fashioned production of the 1957 Broadway show about swindler-salesman Harold Hill and his escapades in River City. "Seventy-Six Trombones" rang through Beijing's Tianchao Theater as the all-Chinese cast of 60, many of them in blond, red and light brown wigs, danced and sang to Meredith Willson's score. The lyrics were translated into Chinese, and the audience applauded loudly.
NEWS
April 22, 1987 | Associated Press
President Reagan will award posthumous Medals of Freedom to actor Danny Kaye and composer Meredith Willson, the White House announced Tuesday. Others chosen for the nation's highest civilian honor are conductor Mstislav Rostropovich, Frederick Patterson, founder of the United Negro College Fund, and Nathan Perlmutter, executive director of the Anti-Defamation League. The awards will be presented June 23 at the White House, the announcement said.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 16, 1986 | TERRY ATKINSON, Compiled by Terry Atkinson
"The Music Man." Warner. $24.98. While one may grumble at a few saggy spots, a couple of below-par songs and the ultimate message--that our lives are better off with con men than without them!--everything else about this splashy, 151-minute 1962 musical is as irresistible as the charm of Robert Preston's trickster-with-a-heart-of-gold band-instrument salesman. As with "Auntie Mame," Morton da Costa moved his director's chair from Broadway to Hollywood with sparkling cinematic results.
NEWS
August 13, 1995 | From a Times Staff Writer
Phil Harris, the bandleader who became famous by portraying himself as a flashy, hard-drinking musician on the old Jack Benny radio show, died late Friday. He was 89. His wife of 54 years, former actress Alice Faye, and daughter, Phyllis Harris, were at his side at their Rancho Mirage home, said family spokesman Jewel Baxter.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 9, 2004
Television awards: The Directors Guild of America nominees for the best made-for-TV movies, airing in 2003: Jane Anderson (HBO's "Normal"), Jeff Bleckner (ABC's "Meredith Willson's 'The Music Man' "), Rod Holcomb (FX's "The Pentagon Papers"), Richard Loncraine (HBO's "My House in Umbria"), and Mike Nichols (HBO's "Angels in America.")
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