I'm afraid I've had to set up comment moderation, at least for the time being. The spam has been out of control lately, and until TypePad figures out a way to fix their filter, this is the only way I know how to deal with it.
Some time ago, I did a blog post about the actress who played Fred's maid in the 1951 version of A Christmas Carol, known in Britain as Scrooge. I wrote that viewers loved her, but no one seemed to know who she was. Recently, commenter Paul Tollet told me that he knew: She's his sister's mother-in-law. At the time she appeared in the film, he reported, her name was Theresa Derrington.
I e-mailed Paul, who put me in touch with Theresa's son Matthew Hepenstal, and the two of them supplied some information about her life and career. Her nickname is "Trip," as she was one of triplets. She attended the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts, and played only a few roles onstage and in films before marrying in 1951. She and her husband had five children. She was widowed and later married again; her last name is now Cozens-Hardy.
Random Reads, a blog at Random House India, is doing a series about "forgotten" classics. This month, The Old Curiosity Shopis featured. It's odd to think of this one as "forgotten," when it was so immensely popular in its time -- but there's no doubt that tastes have changed since then. Makes you wonder which Dickens novels will be considered the best, and which will be "forgotten," in another century or so.
"Charles Dickens had two ravens, two St. Bernards, two Newfoundlands, a spaniel, a mastiff, a Pomeranian, a cat, a canary, and a pony. Their names, respectively, were Grip I, Grip II, Sultan, Linda, Don, Bumble, Timber, Turk, Mrs. Bouncer, Williamina, Dick, and Newman Noggs."
Broadway's Tony Award nominations were announced this morning, and The Mystery of Edwin Drood picked up five: Best Revival of a Musical, Best Director (Scott Ellis), Best Leading Actress (Stephanie J. Block as Edwin), Best Featured Actor (Will Chase as Jasper), and Best Scenic Design (Anna Louizos). The winners will be announced June 9, in a live ceremony on CBS.
Drood also received seven Drama Desk nominations: Outstanding Revival of a Musical, Outstanding Actor (Jim Norton as the Chairman), Outstanding Actress (Block), Outstanding Featured Actor (Andy Karl as Neville), Outstanding Featured Actress (Jessie Mueller as Helena), Outstanding Set Design (Louizos), and Outstanding Sound Design (Tony Meola). The Drama Desk winners will be announced May 19.