La la la la la…(UPDATED)

Not sure what to make of this, but at least I don’t need subtitles. As the kids would say, WTF?

UPDATE: Since the original post, I’ve turned up a bit more information on this performer. His name is Eduard Hil (spelt “Hill” in some places, which may not be correct). Someone has put up a fan page about him on Facebook, and a video search on Google turns up a few more of his videos.

Here’s one, more links on this Russian language page.

UPDATE 2: Here’s another video that shows an early clip of Hil from some musical film, followed almost immediately by another clip of him singing a live “remix” of the same song on a Russian chat show of some kind.

Joe Green Among the Greens

I’m reminded of an old Victor Borge joke: “…and now a piece by Giuseppe Verdi. Joe Green to you.”

And it was Joe Green, or at least his music, that invaded a market in Valencia, Spain on an apparently ordinary day. Piano music comes over the loudspeakers: somebody’s playing Joe’s tunes. Then a fruit merchant suddenly breaks into song. Heads turn, a crowd gathers – but see for yourself:

The event appears to have been a promo for a local opera company. Someone holds up a sign at the end that says “¿Ves como te gusta la Ópera?”, which, as near as I can tell, translates, “See how much you like opera?” There’s also a long web address at the bottom that I can’t seem to make out, which I’m guessing leads to the site of the company that put on this event. I say “event” because it’s too sublime to be called a “publicity stunt”.

Stephen Fry shared this link on Twitter today, with this comment: “Art truly proves its power when it’s taken out of its usual sphere and seen somewhere ordinary.” Joe Green would have been pleased and proud.

It had me grinning and a little weepy at the spontaneous beauty of it all. Thanks, Stephen! (Or should I say Steve?)

YouTube – Opera en el Mercado

Bob and Ray -Two Classic Sketches

One of my favourite comedy teams, Bob Elliot and Ray Goulding, do two of their classic sketches on the Johnny Carson show – “The Most Beautiful Face Contest” and reporter Wally Ballou interviewing a four-leaf clover farmer. The beginning of the first sketch is cut off, and the video quality is sketchy throughout, but it’s well worth a watch.

An interesting side note: between the two sketches, Johnny asks Bob if any of his children are interested in show business, and he mentions his son Chris. That’s Chris Elliott, who would eventually go on to fame as a regular on Late Night with David Letterman, and roles in movies like Groundhog Day. Now, Chris’ daughter, Abby, has joined the cast of Saturday Night Live. The family was featured in a New York Times Magazine feature article last November.

Now, as Bob and Ray would say as they signed off their show, “write if you get work, and hang by your thumbs.”

(thanks, They Might Be Giants!)

YouTube – Bob and Ray “Most Beautiful Face Winner”