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Progressive social activist, 'The Sound of Music' Broadway Star, and Oscar-Nominated Actor Bikel Dead at 91

Theodore Bikel. Theodore Bikel dead at 91: Oscar-nominated actor and folk singer best known for stage musicals 'The Sound of Music,' 'Fiddler on the Roof' Folk singer, social and union activist, and stage, film, and television actor Theodore Bikel, best remembered for starring in the Broadway musical The Sound of Music and, throughout the U.S., in Fiddler on the Roof, died Monday morning (July 20, '15) of "natural causes" at the UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles. The Austrian-born Bikel – as Theodore Meir Bikel on May 2, 1924, in Vienna, to Yiddish-speaking Eastern European parents – was 91. Fled Hitler Thanks to his well-connected Zionist father, six months after the German annexation of Austria in March 1938 ("they were greeted with jubilation by the local populace," he would recall in 2012), the 14-year-old Bikel and his family fled to Palestine, at the time a British protectorate. While there, the teenager began acting on stage,
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

“Downton Abbey” Recap: “Party Games”

I am a cad. A terrible cad. Was I complaining about Anna and Bates last week? Was I? Well, I am an insensitive lout—which, coincidentally, is the subject line of every email my mother sends me. But we’ll come to that in its turn…

Welcome back to Downton Abbey, or as the first George Bush would call it, “A thousand points of plot.” This week the Abbey is hosting a weekend house party, which means that everyone downstairs is in a constant state of “tizzy” while everyone upstairs is desperately trying not to look so bored with one another. As much as Downton weaves a magical spell of time and place, and as interesting and glamorous as Julian Fellowes can make the early twentieth century seem, I know I would have been rot as a member of the Downton coterie, because I could not survive so damn long without television.
See full article at The Backlot »

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