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South Pacific

June 23, 2010 | By Susan King, Los Angeles Times
Want to see "South Pacific" in Los Angeles? On Friday, you will have two fun choices. As the Tony Award-winning revival of the 1949 classic Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II musical continues to enchant audiences at the Ahmanson, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will also be unveiling a newly restored 70-millimeter print of the 1958 movie version of the epic romance at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater. Following the screening, Center Theatre Group's artistic director, Michael Ritchie, will lead a discussion with three of the film's stars — Mitzi Gaynor, who played the perky nurse Nellie Forbush; John Kerr, who played the ill-fated Lt. Cable; and France Nuyen, who played his native lover, Liat — as well as Rod Gilfry, who just left the Ahmanson production.
June 16, 2010 | By Diane Haithman, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Carmen Cusack's showbiz career did not begin in the South Pacific, but there were definitely oceans involved. Cusack, currently winning rave reviews playing "cockeyed optimist" Nellie Forbush in the touring production of Lincoln Center's "South Pacific" at the Ahmanson Theatre, began her professional life as a cruise ship performer. It wasn't technically her first paying gig: Cusack, born in Colorado and raised in Alabama and Texas, was 5 when the pastor of her church coaxed her to belt out her signature song, "Amazing Grace," by offering her a chocolate bar. "I'll never forget this — the pastor asked me if I wanted the accompanist to accompany me, and I pulled him down to my level and said: 'No thank you, sir, she might mess up,'" Cusack said with a delighted grin during a recent conversation in her dressing room at the Ahmanson.
June 6, 2010 | By Avital Binshtock
UTAH Camp out among furry friends Volunteer your time with orphaned animals at Best Friends Animal Sanctuary, America's largest no-kill pet shelter, then enjoy hiking and camping in a national park, either Grand Canyon or Zion. Scientist Jonathan Balcombe, the author of "Second Nature: The Inner Lives of Animals," accompanies the Zion itinerary. The first segment of your vacation may include feeding, grooming, walking or training cats, dogs, birds, horses or pot-bellied pigs.
May 30, 2010 | By Charlotte Stoudt, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Some enchanted evenings call for two strangers. Rod Gilfry and David Pittsinger, baritones from the world of opera, will tag-team the role of dashing Emile de Becque in the revival of "South Pacific" that opens this week at the Ahmanson Theatre. The blond, buff Gilfry and the tall, intense Pittsinger may be unfamiliar to musical theater audiences, but they are big names on the international opera circuit. Los Angeles Opera General Director Plácido Domingo, who has worked with both men, says Gilfry and Pittsinger embody the best of contemporary opera, offering "superb vocalism and dramatic insights matched with the right looks for the roles they perform."
April 4, 2010 | By Avital Binshtock
UZBEKISTAN AND TURKMENISTAN 'Cities of the Silk Road' A key highlight of Wild Frontiers' 16-day "Cities of the Silk Road" itinerary is seeing Darvaza, fondly called Turkmenistan's "Door to Hell," a 280-foot-wide crater that's been ablaze since 1971, when geologists ignited its natural gases. Besides that fiery spectacle, there's plenty else to take in between these two rarely visited Central Asia nations, with their many archaeological sites, culture and history aplenty, the world's largest carpet, the Oxus River, the moonscape of the Karakum Desert and Ashgabat's impressive architecture.
January 4, 2009 | Sara Lippincott
On a recent South Pacific cruise aboard the Star Flyer, a sailing ship somewhat bigger than a 19th century whaler and a lot comfier, I brought along Herman Melville's "Omoo." Melville had launched his writing career while racketing around the Marquesas and the Society Islands in his early 20s. In that languorous climate, he might well have gone the other way -- to seed, like the classic South Pacific remittance man -- but there was no avoiding his gift.
December 5, 2008 | Tina Susman, Susman is a Times staff writer.
A South Pacific war cry thundered through the palace of a dead dictator in a desert land. "Aye, aye! Aye, aye!" Three rows of men, broad-shouldered and thick-thighed, clench-jawed and bronze-faced, stomped their feet and punched their fists, their guttural chants bouncing off the marble floors and the high-domed ceiling. In the annals of farewell ceremonies, the one for Tonga's troops no doubt ranked as the most stirring.
September 3, 2008 | From Reuters
The Rodgers & Hammerstein Organization is in talks with major music companies to sell its catalog of Broadway musical show tunes for between $150 million and $200 million, according to people familiar with the matter. EMI Music Publishing, Sony Corp's Sony/ATV Music Publishing, Vivendi's Universal Music Publishing and Warner/Chappell Music Publishing are all looking over the catalog, which includes songs from shows such as "The Sound of Music," "The King and I" and "South Pacific."
May 14, 2008 | Josh Getlin, Times Staff Writer
NEW YORK -- "In the Heights," a bold new musical about Latinos in Upper Manhattan, captured an eye-popping 13 Tony nominations, and the critically praised revival of Rodgers and Hammerstein's "South Pacific" won 12 as the 62nd annual Tony Awards nominees were unveiled Tuesday.
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