Daily Archives: January 24, 2011

Theoni V. Aldredge, one of the greatest Costume Designers of the 20th Century, Dies at 88

It is always a landmark for me when a theatre great passes on, and reading in this morning’s NY Times that costume designer Theoni V. Aldredge had died in Connecticut three days ago. struck me as one such landmark.

Aldredge won three Tony Awards for Costuming: Annie in 1977,  Barnum in 1980 and La Cage aux Folles in 1987. She was nominated for Tonys 12 other times, most recently in 2006 for the revival of Follies.

Aldredge was born Theoni Athanasiou Vashlioti in 1932 in Salonika, Greece (which, oddly enough, is where my relatives on my Father’s side come from). She acquired her last name in 1953 when she married actor Tom Aldredge, who she remained with for the rest of her life.

She often worked for Joe Papp at the Public Theater and, when Papp brought his big pieces to Broadway, like Two Gentlemen Of Verona in the 1970s, it was Theoni Aldredge who costumed the huge cast. Aldredge was known for beautiful designs that took large budgets to create… surprising since she did so much non-profit work for Papp.

In films, she won three Oscars and had five other nominations. Her films included Ghostbusters, Network, Moonstruck and Addams Family Values – indicative of the range of styles she commanded.

In 1985 she designed both costumes and environment for Akyvernites politeis, a television series in Greece.

I’ve been reading some posts on Atheism at Humanitarikim…

…and it reminded me of the Atheist Hymn that I put a YouTube cut on this blog last year (Steve Martin and the Stone Canyon Rangers):

And, please, check out Humanitarikim. You’ll enjoy it.

Another Question Eric Cantor is Sidestepping…

Representative Eric Cantor of Virginia

Eric Cantor

If you saw House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R – VA) on Meet The Press yesterday, you know that he evaded every question that was put to him. 

Here’s another from Senators Chuck Schumer (D – NY) and Robert Menendez (D – NJ).

The whole article is available at Talking Points Memo:

clipped from tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com
As promised, Senate Democrats aren’t going to take the GOP‘s health care repeal push lying down
In a letter delivered to House Majority Leader Eric Cantor Sunday, Sens. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Robert Menendez (D-NJ) demand an answer to a question now at the center of the Republican party’s top legislative priority: Will repealing the health care law force seniors to reimburse the government for the $250 check they received in 2010 to help them pay for prescription drugs?
“We are particularly concerned that repeal would reverse the course of making prescription drugs more affordable for seniors,” Schumer and Menendez write. “The [repeal] legislation approved by the House could require seniors to repay the government.”
“Richard Foster, the Chief Actuary for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), has said that “in theory,” seniors would have to return the checks if repeal becomes law,” the letter reads.
You can read the entire letter here.
blog it

Jack LaLanne is Dead at 96

You know, I actually believed that Jack LaLanne would live forever. I had been tripping over his appearances on television since the 1950s, running exercise classes, selling food processors with his wife, swimming and pulling boats behind him in Long Island Sound in his 70s… he was unstoppable.

His wife, Elaine, who had been with him for 51 years, said:

“I have not only lost my husband and a great American icon, but the best friend and most loving partner anyone could ever hope for.”

LaLanne was active and exercised right up to the end, according to his agent.

A LaLanne quote:

“The only way you can hurt the body is not use it. Inactivity is the killer and, remember, it’s never too late.”

In Jack LaLanne’s case, however, respiratory failure due to pneumonia was the killer.

Goodbye, Jack.