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South Pacific

ENTERTAINMENT
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.
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TRAVEL
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.
ENTERTAINMENT
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."
TRAVEL
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.
ENTERTAINMENT
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.
WORLD
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.
ENTERTAINMENT
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."
ENTERTAINMENT
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.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 18, 2007 | From the Associated Press
"South Pacific" may be one of the most popular Broadway musicals ever -- with a Rodgers and Hammerstein score that includes "Some Enchanted Evening," "There Is Nothin' Like a Dame," "Bali Ha'i" and "I'm Gonna Wash That Man Right Outa My Hair." But it's never had a Broadway revival. Now Lincoln Center Theater is bringing back the 1949 classic, with Kelli O'Hara as Nellie Forbush and opera baritone Paulo Szot as Emile de Becque.
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