Dedications: My four late friends Rory, Stan, Bryan, Jeff - shine on you crazy diamonds, they would have blogged too. Then theres Garry from Brisbane, Franco in Milan, Mike now in S.F. / my '60s-'80s gang: Ned & Joseph in Ireland; in England: Frank, Des, Guy, Clive, Joe & Joe, Ian, Ivan, Nick, David, Les, Stewart, the 3 Michaels / Catriona, Sally, Monica, Jean, Ella, Anne, Candie / and now: Daryl in N.Y., Jerry, John, Colin, Martin and Donal.

Monday, 3 April 2017

RIP, continued ...

I was sad to see the obituary of Russian poet Yevgeny Yevtushenko (1932-2017), aged 84. He was a key influence on my teenage reading years .... as this piece from 2012:

YEVTUSHENKO: SELECTED POEMS - This Penguin Paperback was an early '60s favourite of mine, it was interesting finding it again the other day. The blurb says: "Yevgeny Yevtushenko is the fearless spokesman of his generation in Russia. In verse that is young, fresh, and outspoken, he frets at restraint and injustice, as in his now famous protest over the Jewish pogrom at Kiev. But he can write lyrically too, of the simple things of all humanity - love, a birthday, a holiday in Georgia. And in "Zima Junction" he brilliant records his impressions on a visit to his home in Siberia". Yevtushenko is now much older, but was the Rudolph Nureyev of poetry then. Even now looking at those titles like "Lies", "Waiting", "Colours", "Encounter", "People", "Babi Yar" and that long marvellous poem "Zima Junction" brings it all back, being 18 or 19 again. 

David Storey (1933-2017) aged 83. Prolific British writer and playwright, Storey - like Alan Sillitoe and John Braine - caught that early 1960s Northern new wave, with his novels like THIS SPORTING LIFE (filmed by Lindsay Anderson n 1963), FLIGHT INTO CAMDEN and SAVILLE. He and Anderson collaborated on several of his plays, I loved HOME in 1970 which I saw twice, with Gielgud and Richardson at their peaks, and also Storey's IN CELEBRATION and THE CHANGING ROOM.

Tim Pigott-Smith (1946-2017) aged 71. Veteran British actor, best known for his leading role in the classic 1984 series THE JEWEL IN THE CROWN, which I have been meaning to re-visit. He was still working with several projects in post-production and was in the current hit BBC production of DECLINE AND FALL. Other roles included in DOWNTON ABBEY, ALEXANDER, FOYLE'S WAR, GANGS OF NEW YORK, BLOODY SUNDAY, THE REMAINS OF THE DAY, MIDSOMER MURDERS and more, 

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