Gene Kelly

American dancer, actor, singer, film director, producer, and choreographer “Gene” Kelly was born August 23, 1912 in Pittsburgh. Kelly started dancing At the age of eight after he was enrolled by his mother in dance classes, along with his elder brother James. They both rebelled, and, according to Kelly: “We didn’t like it much and were continually involved in fistfights with the neighborhood boys who called us sissies…I didn’t dance again until I was fifteen.” He thought it would be a good way to get girls. Kelly returned to dance on his own initiative and by then was an accomplished sportsman and well able to take care of himself. He attended St. Raphael Elementary School in Pittsburgh, PA. He graduated from Peabody High School in 1929 at the age of sixteen. He enrolled in Pennsylvania State College to study journalism but the economic crash obliged him to seek employment to help with the family’s finances. At this time, he worked up dance routines with his younger brother Fred in order to earn prize money in local talent contests, and they also performed in local nightclubs.

In 1931, Kelly enrolled at the University of Pittsburgh to study economics. While at Pitt, Kelly became involved in the university’s Cap and Gown Club, which staged original, comedic musical productions. Earning a Bachelor of Arts in Economics with his graduation from Pitt in 1933, he remained active with the Cap and Gown Club, serving as its director from 1934 to 1938, while at the same time enrolling in the University of Pittsburgh Law School Also during this period, Kelly’s family started a dance studio on Munhall Road in the Squirrel Hill neighborhood of Pittsburgh. In 1932, the dance studio was renamed The Gene Kelly Studio of the Dance. A second location was opened in Johnstown, Pennsylvania in 1933. Kelly served as a teacher at the studio during both his undergraduate and law student years at Pitt.Eventually, though, he decided to pursue his career as a dance teacher and full-time entertainer, so Kelly dropped out of law school after two months. He began to increasingly focus on performing. , having successfully managed and developed the family’s dance school business, he moved to New York City In 1937 in search of work as a choreographer, but returned to Pittsburgh, to his first position as a choreographer with the Charles Gaynor musical revue Hold Your Hats at the Pittsburgh Playhouse in April, 1938.

His first Broadway assignment, in November 1938, was as a dancer in Cole Porter’s Leave It to Me! as the American ambassador’s secretary who supports Mary Martin while she sings “My Heart Belongs to Daddy”. In 1939, he was selected to be part of a musical revue “One for the Money” produced by the actress Katharine Cornell, who was known for finding and hiring talented young actors.Kelly’s first career breakthrough was in the Pulitzer Prize-winning The Time of Your Life, In the same year he received his first assignment as a Broadway choreographer, for Billy Rose’s Diamond Horseshoe and In 1940, he was given the leading role in Rodgers and Hart’s Pal Joey which propelled him to stardom and Offers from Hollywood soon began to arrive. His first motion picture was “For Me and My Gal” (1942) with Judy Garland. He achieved his breakthrough as a dancer when he worked with Rita Hayworth in Cover Girl (1944), his next film Anchors Aweigh (1945) became one of the most successful films of 1945. Upon his return to Hollywood in the spring of 1946, he starred in Living in a Big Way and led to his next picture, a film version of Cole Porter’s The Pirate with Judy Garland in which Kelly plays the eponymous swashbuckler.

He capitalised on his swashbuckling image as d’Artagnan in The Three Musketeers. and also appeared with Vera-Ellen in the Slaughter on Tenth Avenue ballet in Words and Music (1948) followed by Words and Music (1948), Take Me Out to the Ball Game (1949), and On the Town, partnered with Frank Sinatra. In 1949 he took the lead role in the early mafia melodrama: The Black Hand.This was then followed by Summer Stock (1950) in which Kelly performed “You, You Wonderful You”, An American in Paris (1951) and, probably the most popular and admired of all film musicals – Singin’ in the Rain (1952). Kelly, at the very peak of his creative powers, now made what in retrospect is seen as a serious mistake, and went to Europe to make a pet project of his to bring modern ballet to mainstream film audiences. The film Invitation to the Dance It was beset with delays and technical problems, and flopped when finally released in 1956. For his next picture Brigadoon (1954), he starred alongside Cyd Charisse, In his next film Deep in My Heart, He also appeared with his brother Fred in. He made three further pictures for MGM. It’s Always Fair Weather (1956), Les Girls (1957) and The Happy Road.

Leaving MGM in 1957, Kelly returned to stage work, although he continued to make some film appearances, such as Hornbeck in the 1960 Hollywood production of Inherit the Wind. Kelly also frequently appeared on television shows during the 1960s, including a role as Father Chuck O’Malley in Going My Way (1962–63). He also appeared in three major TV specials: New York, New York (1966), The Julie Andrews’ Show (1965), and Jack and the Beanstalk (1967) which won him an Emmy Award for Outstanding Children’s Program. He joined 20th Century Fox in 1965, wher he starred the major box-office hit A Guide for the Married Man (1967) and was commissioned to direct Hello, Dolly! (1969), starring Walther Matthau and Barbra Streisand. In 1970, he made another TV special: Gene Kelly and 50 Girls. He also directed veteran actors James Stewart and Henry Fonda in the comedy western The Cheyenne Social Club (1970). Then, in 1974, he appeared as one of many special narrators in the surprise hit of the year That’s Entertainment! and subsequently directed and co-starred with his friend Fred Astaire in the sequel That’s Entertainment, Part II.Sadly Kelly’s health declined steadily in the late 1980s, and a stroke in July 1994 resulted in a seven week hospital stay. Another stroke in early 1995 left Kelly mostly bedridden in his Beverly Hills, California home. He died in his sleep on February 2, 1996, and his body was subsequently cremated, without any funeral or memorial servicesAlthough he is known today for his performances in Singin’ in the Rain and An American in Paris, he was a dominant force in Hollywood musical films from the mid 1940s until this art form fell out of fashion in the late 1950s. His many innovations transformed the Hollywood musical film, and he is credited with almost single-handedly making the ballet form commercially acceptable to film audiences. Kelly sadly passed away on February 2, 1996 but recieved many awards during his career including the Chevalier of the Legion d’Honneur from the French Government, an Academy Honorary Award in 1952 for his career achievements, a lifetime achievement awards in the Kennedy Center Honors, and in 1999, the American Film Institute also numbered him 15th in their Greatest Male Stars of All Time list.

Keith Moon (The Who)

the-whoThe late great Keith Moon, the former drummer with The Who was born 23rd August 1946. The Who were formed in 1964 by Roger Daltrey (lead vocals, harmonica and guitar), Pete Townshend, John Entwistle (bass guitar, brass and vocals) and Keith Moon (drums and percussion). They became known for energetic live performances which often included instrument destruction. The Who have sold about 100 million records, and have charted 27 top forty singles in the United Kingdom and United States, as well as 17 top ten albums, with 18 Gold, 12 Platinum and 5 Multi-Platinum album awards in the United States alone. The Who rose to fame in the UK with a series of top ten hit singles, boosted in part by pirate radio stations such as Radio Caroline, beginning in January 1965 with“I Can’t Explain”. The albums My Generation, A Quick One and The Who Sell Out followed, with the first two reaching the UK top five.

They first hit the US Top 40 in 1967 with “Happy Jack” and hit the top ten later that year with “I Can See for Miles”.Their fame grew with memorable performances at the Monterey Pop, Woodstock and Isle of Wight music festivals. The 1969 release of Tommy was the first in a series of top ten albums in the US, followed by Live at Leeds, Who’s Next, Quadrophenia, The Who by Numbers, Who Are You, and The Kids Are Alright. Saldy though Keith Moon tragically died at the age of 32 in 1978, after which the band released two studio albums, the UK and US top five Face Dances and the US top ten It’s Hard, with drummer Kenney Jones, before disbanding in 1983.They re-formed at events such as Live Aid and for reunion tours such as their 25th anniversary tour and the Quadrophenia tours of 1996 and 1997. In 2000, the three surviving original members discussed recording an album of new material, but their plans temporarily stalled upon Entwistle’s death at the age of 57 in 2002. Townshend and Daltrey continue to perform as The Who, and in 2006 they released the studio album Endless Wire, which reached the top ten in the UK and US.

The Who were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990, their first year of eligibility; the display describes them as “Prime contenders, in the minds of many, for the title of World’s Greatest Rock Band.” Time magazine wrote in 1979 that “No other group has ever pushed rock so far, or asked so much from it.” Rolling Stone magazine wrote: “Along with The Beatles and The Rolling Stones, The Who complete the holy trinity of British rock.” They received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the British Phonographic Industry in 1988, and from the Grammy Foundation in 2001, for creative contributions of outstanding artistic significance to the field of recording. In 2008 surviving members Townshend and Daltrey were honoured at the 31st Annual Kennedy Center Honours. That same year VH1 Rock Honours paid tribute to The Who and Jack Black of Tenacious D called them “the greatest band of all time. The Two surviving members of the Who also performed towards the end of the 2012 Olympic Closing Ceremony in London.

QUADROPHENIA

Internet anniversary

imageThe World Wide Web (abbreviated as WWW or W3, commonly known as the web)debuted on 23 August 1991. The World Wide Web is asystem of interlinked hypertext documents accessed via the Internet. With a web browser, one can view web pages that may contain text, images, videos, and other multimedia and navigate between them via hyperlinks.The web was developed between March 1989 and December 1990. Using concepts from his earlier hypertext systems such as ENQUIRE, British engineer Tim Berners-Lee, acomputer scientist and at that time employee of the CERN, now Director of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), wrote a proposal in March 1989 for what would eventually become the World Wide Web. The 1989 proposal was meant for a more effective CERN communication system but Berners-Lee eventually realised the concept could be implemented throughout the world. At CERN, a European research organisation nearGeneva straddling the border between France and Switzerland, berners-Lee and Belgian computer scientist Robert Cailliau proposed in 1990 to use hypertext “to link and access information of various kinds as a web of nodes in which the user can browse at will”, and Berners-Lee finished the first website in December that year. Berners-Lee posted the project on the alt.hypertext newsgroup on 7 August 1991

In the May 1970 issue of Popular Science magazine, Arthur C. Clarke predicted that satellites would someday “bring the accumulated knowledge of the world to your fingertips” using a console that would combine the functionality of the photocopier, telephone, television and a small computer, allowing data tyransfer and video conferencing around the globe.In March 1989, Tim Berners-Lee wrote a proposal that referenced ENQUIRE, a database and software project he had built in 1980, and described a more elaborate information management system. With help from Robert Cailliau, he published a more formal proposal (on 12 November 1990) to build a “Hypertext project” called “WorldWideWeb” (one word, also “W3″) as a “web” of “hypertext documents” to be viewed by “browsers” using a client–server architecture. This proposal estimated that a read-only web would be developed within three months and that it would take six months to achieve “the creation of new links and new material by readers, [so that] authorship becomes universal” as well as “the automatic notification of a reader when new material of interest to him/her has become available.” While the read-only goal was met, accessible authorship of web content took longer to mature, with the wiki concept, blogs, Web 2.0 and RSS/Atom.

The proposal was modeled after the SGML reader Dynatext by Electronic Book Technology, a spin-off from the Institute for Research in Information and Scholarship at Brown University. The Dynatext system, licensed by CERN, was a key player in the extension of SGML ISO 8879:1986 to Hypermedia within HyTime, but it was considered too expensive and had an inappropriate licensing policy for use in the general high energy physics community, namely a fee for each document and each document alteration.The CERN datacenter in 2010 housing some WWW serversA NeXT Computer was used by Berners-Lee as the world’s first web server and also to write the first web browser, WorldWideWeb, in 1990. By Christmas 1990, Berners-Lee had built all the tools necessary for a working Web: the first web browser (which was a web editor as well); the first web server; and the first web pages, which described the project itself.The first web page may be lost, but Paul Jones of UNC-Chapel Hill in North Carolina revealed in May 2013 that he has a copy of a page sent to him by Berners-Lee which is the oldest known web page. Jones stored it on a floppy disk and on his NeXT computer.

On 6 August 1991, Berners-Lee posted a short summary of the World Wide Web project on the alt.hypertext newsgroup. This date also marked the debut of the Web as a publicly available service on the Internet, although new users only access it after August 23. For this reason this is considered the internaut’s day. Many newsmedia have reported that the first photo on the web was uploaded by Berners-Lee in 1992, an image of the CERN house band Les Horribles Cernettes taken by Silvano de Gennaro; Gennaro has disclaimed this story, writing that media were “totally distorting our words for the sake of cheap sensationalism.” The first server outside Europe was set up at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center (SLAC) in Palo Alto, California, to host the SPIRES-HEP database. Accounts differ substantially as to the date of this event. The World Wide Web Consortium says December 1992, whereas SLAC itself claims 1991. This is supported by a W3C document titled A Little History of the World Wide Web. The crucial underlying concept of hypertext originated with older projects from the 1960s, such as the Hypertext Editing System (HES) at Brown University, Ted Nelson’s Project Xanadu, and Douglas Engelbart’s oN-Line System (NLS). Both Nelson and Engelbart were in turn inspired by Vannevar Bush’s microfilm-based “memex”, which was described in the 1945 essay “As We May Think”.

Berners-Lee’s breakthrough was to marry hypertext to the Internet. In his book Weaving The Web, he explains that he had repeatedly suggested that a marriage between the two technologies was possible to members of both technical communities, but when no one took up his invitation, he finally assumed the project himself. In the process, he developed three essential technologies:a system of globally unique identifiers for resources on the Web and elsewhere, the universal document identifier (UDI), later known as uniform resource locator (URL) and uniform resource identifier (URI);the publishing language HyperText Markup Language (HTML);the Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP). The World Wide Web had a number of differences from other hypertext systems available at the time. The web required only unidirectional links rather than bidirectional ones, making it possible for someone to link to another resource without action by the owner of that resource. It also significantly reduced the difficulty of implementing web servers and browsers (in comparison to earlier systems), but in turn presented the chronic problem of link rot. Unlike predecessors such as HyperCard, the World Wide Web was non-proprietary, making it possible to develop servers and clients independently and to add extensions without licensing restrictions. On 30 April 1993, CERN announced that the World Wide Web would be free to anyone, with no fees due. Coming two months after the announcement that the server implementation of the Gopher protocol was no longer free to use, this produced a rapid shift away from Gopher and towards the Web.

An early popular web browser was ViolaWWW for Unix and the X Windowing System..Scholars generally agree that a turning point for the World Wide Web began with the introduction of the Mosaic web browser in 1993, a graphical browser developed by a team at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (NCSA-UIUC), led by Marc Andreessen. Funding for Mosaic came from the U.S. High-Performance Computing and Communications Initiative and the High Performance Computing and Communication Act of 1991, one of several computing developments initiated by U.S. Senator Al Gore. Prior to the release of Mosaic, graphics were not commonly mixed with text in web pages and the web’s popularity was less than older protocols in use over the Internet, such as Gopher and Wide Area Information Servers(WAIS). Mosaic’s graphical user interface allowed the Web to become, by far, the most popular Internet protocol.

The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) was founded by Tim Berners-Lee after he left the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) in October 1994. It was founded at theMassachusetts Institute of Technology Laboratory for Computer Science (MIT/LCS) with support from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), which had pioneered the Internet; a year later, a second site was founded at INRIA (a French national computer research lab) with support from the European Commission DG InfSo; and in 1996, a third continental site was created in Japan at Keio University. By the end of 1994, while the total number of websites was still minute compared to present standards, quite a number of notable websites were already active, many of which are the precursors or inspiration for today’s most popular services.Connected by the existing Internet, other websites were created around the world, adding international standards for domain names and HTML. Since then, Berners-Lee has played an active role in guiding the development of web standards (such as the markup languages in which web pages are composed), and has advocated his vision of a Semantic Web. The World Wide Web enabled the spread of information over the Internet through an easy-to-use and flexible format. It thus played an important role in popularizing use of the Internet. Although the two terms are sometimes conflated in popular use, World Wide Web is not synonymous with Internet. The web is a collection of documents and both client and server software using Internet protocols such as TCP/IP and HTTP.Tim Berners-Lee was knighted in 2004 by Queen Elizabeth II for his contribution to the World Wide Web.

Shaun Ryder (Happy Mondays, Black Grape)

Shaun Ryder vocalist with The Indie/alternative/dance bands the Happy Mondays and Black Grape was born 23rd August 1962. Formed in 1980 in Salford, Greater Manchester, the Happy Monday’s original line-up consisted of Shaun Ryder on lead vocals, his brother Paul Ryder on bass, lead guitarist Mark Day, keyboardist Paul Davis, and drummer Gary Whelan. Mark “Bez” Berry joined the band onstage later during a live performance after befriending Shaun Ryder and served as a dancer/percussionist. Rowetta Satchell also joined the band to provide backing vocals in the early 1990s. Some of the Happy Mondays best known songs include Step On, Wrote For Luck, Hallelujah, 24 Hour Party People and Kinky Afro. Their discography includes Bummed and Pills,thrills and Bellyaches.

Along with The Stone Roses, The Happy Mondays found fame and success during the “Madchester” music scene of the late 1980′ and early 1990′s, which developed in Manchester, England. The music that emerged from the scene mixed alternative rock, psychedelic rock and dance music. Other Artists associated with the scene also included New Order, Inspiral Carpets, Northside, 808 State, James, The Charlatans, The Fall, A Guy Called Gerald, and other bands. At that time, the Haçienda nightclub was a major catalyst for the distinctive musical ethos in the city that was called the Second Summer of Love. The Happy Mondays also played at various Music Festivals during the summer 2012 including V Festival at Weston Park, Weston-under-Lizard and Hylands Park, Chelmsford. There may Also be footage of the performance online somewhere.