Nicholas Parsons

It is so sad to read of the death of the great Nicholas Parsons. He has dominated tv and radio for all my life- I remember “sale of the Century” and the “Benny Hill show” with affection when I was little and more recently, I cannot think of a weekend without a fix of “Just a minute”, even doing catch-ups in Moscow and Athens (though Gyles Brandreth took over at least once this summer- he did well, but it was not quite the same, was it?). But, most of all, I also greatly appreciate the fact that he bothered to write to me once about my hero, Edward Lear. He was, indeed, often the person of choice to recite limericks¬† on the radio and the tv – and his “Owl and the Pussycat” was excellent. With his passing, Lear-o-philes will be the poorer.

I also remember seeing him on stage in the “Rocky Horror” but, particularly, as the narrator in “Into the woods”, popping up at the end of act 1 with a daisy head-dress. I am about to do a programme on radio Fubar about rap and his opening of the Sondheim piece (along with the witch’s rap about vegetables of course) must qualify. It was a brave piece to do and he brought it off with aplomb.

I am not sure anyone has mentioned his Dr Who appearance as a vicar? Or that he took over from Tim Brooke Taylor as rector of St Andrews, my first university? What a wonderful man! Much to be missed.

 

More Lear limerick drawings

screen-shot-2017-01-29-at-10-15-45Lear wrote 212 limericks.

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The Dong with the luminous nose is not strictly a limerick-screen-shot-2017-01-29-at-09-09-04

A poster for our exhibition in Wolfson, Oxford showing the owl and pussycat posingfor passports before embarking on their 366 day pea green cruise.

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Some Edward Lear Pictures

David Watson has put together many of the Edward Lear compositions to form a Suite. We shall post a version of this shortly. In the meantime, in celebration, here are some Edward Lear illustrations.

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owl and cat japanese

lear and Howard Carter

Here is the Dong with a luminous nose-

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The Edward Lear project “Following Lear”

On Friday I did an interview for local radio about the Lear project. This is the first time I have done anything for this beyond the few exhibitions. It has been, now, nearly 10 years in development so it is well-worth talking about and here are some sketches in preparation for Lear’s most famous poem that closes the documentary. More, undoubtedly, about this later on!

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