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Thursday, January 14, 2010

The King's Breakfast

In 1963 Searle & Toye collaborated again on a short live-action film The King's Breakfast "a dramatisation in dance and mime, of the A.A. Milne poem about a king who had no butter for the royal slice of bread" (imdb)











The kitchen

The King's gym



 Maurice Denham as the King (thanks to Brian Sibley)

Yak El-Droubie sent in some wonderful shots taken by Douglas Webb on the set of The King's Breakfast. The sets, seemingly painted by Searle's hand, match his designs perfectly.  Like the 1954 Chelsea Arts Ball it's always a thrill to see Searle's work transferred into 'three dimensions'-imagine being on set in a 'walk-in' Searle painting!







I found all these wonderful designs on Photographers Direct.com but they're all very low-res and I couldn't get anywhere contacting the agency directly.  Please contact me  at the address in my Blogger profile if anyone has more info on the photographer/rights holder















Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Songbooks


Reader and contributor Stephen Nadler reminded me that an edition of Flanders & Swann's songs was published with cover illustrations by Searle.


Original artwork in the Searle Archive, Karikatur Museum, Hannover. 


Program cover-Canmore Opera House, Vancouver, BC: November 1980



Searle also illustrated a collection of Tomfoolery composer Tom Lehrer's work called 'Too Many Songs by Tom Lehrer and not enough drawings by Ronald Searle'.



'Poisoning Pigeons in the Park'



'We Will All Go Together When We Go'




Searle contributed this image to an illustrated collection of Beatles lyrics portraying John Lennon.

Lennon (a published cartoonist himself) famously remarked-
". . . I started trying to draw like Ronald Searle when I was about eight. So there was Jabberwocky and Ronald Searle I was turning into by the time I was thirteen. You know, I was determined to be Lewis Carroll with a hint of Ronald Searle."


CD cover for Ricet Barrier's 'La Mythologie'

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Theatre Design

The same year that they worked together on 'The Twelve Days of Christmas' Searle and Toye collaborated on a musical stage production called 'Wild Thyme' with Searle designing the decor and poster artwork.


"WILD THYME" Music by Donald Swann (who also directed the Orchestra)
Eight page sixpenny programme from the Duke of York's Theatre for this production dated August 24th 1955 (the date has been recorded on the cover). It starred Denis Quilley, Betty Paul, Colin Gordon, Jane Wenham, Julian Orchard, Frank Duncan and Paul Manning. The decor and cover design was by Ronald Searle
"Also worthy of mention is the 1955 musical flop, Wild Thyme, which failed despite stage designs by Ronald Searle, who also created one of the best London posters ever produced."



Searle and Toye signing the stage decor


'A railway porter meets a French singing star and they run off to the Devonshire coast of Wild Thyme. They are tracked down by his girlfriend and her impressario husband who brings them to their senses and offers him a singing contract.'


-www.donaldswann.co.uk



Wild Thyme - Costume design for French Doorman


'WILD THYME' ST PANDORA CROSS – ACT 1
  PEN INK, WATERCOLOUR AND BODYCOLOUR (7 X 24 1/2 inches)


Design for Denzil and May



'A Tanner's Worth of Tune' Adrian Wright 2010

Searle has been involved with the theatre throughout his career in some capacity-directly designing productions or producing poster and brochure art. Then of course there are the scores of theatrical caricatures he produced for PUNCH magazine.

PENNY PLAIN (1951-52)
'Surly Girls' (Flanders & Swann)
Desmond Walter-Ellis, Max Adrian & Jimmy Thompson
Backcloth: Ronald Searle

St Martin's Theatre, London.










This poster was designed for the Theatre Production of TOMFOOLERY Music, book and lyrics by Tom Lehrer. Devised by Cameron Mackintosh Criterion Theatre, London: opened 5 June, 1980, closed 30 May 1981 then Top of the Gate Theatre, Off-Broadway - 3 December, 1981







1953: Shakespeare Memorial Theatre Company, Coronation Year Souvenir

full-page colour cartoon by Ronald Searle of Anthony Quayle as Falstaff


THIS IS FOR A 24 PAGE ORIGINAL THEATRE PROGRAMME.  IT IS FOR A CELEBRATION OF THE WORK OF DONALD SWANN & MICHAEL FLANDERS "UNDER THEIR HATS" AT THE KING'S HEAD THEATRE LONDON.



EMLYN WILLIAMS AS CHARLES DICKENS
SIGNED, INSCRIBED WITH TITLE AND DATED 1952
SIGNED AND INSCRIBED WITH PUBLISHING DETAILS ON REVERSE
PEN AND INK 13 3/4 X 8 1/2 INCHES
ILLUSTRATED: NEWS CHRONICLE, LONDON, 30 OCTOBER 195


A poster design for Thelma Holt's production of The Clandestine Marriage.
Signed, inscribed and dated 'Ronald Searle 1994' (lower right) and 'The Clandestine Marriage: Lord Ogleby' (lower left) pencil and black ink, 17 x 12 in. (43 x 30.5 cm.)




Denholm Elliott played Private Peter Able in Christopher Fry's play, "A Sleep of Prisoners" (St. Thomas's Church, London,1951) at the Festival of Britain with Stanley Baker, Hugh Pryse, and Leonard White in the cast. Michael Macowan was director and Peter Vaughan was stage manager. Ronald Searle designed the cover illustration.



A 'winter comedy' by the playwright Christopher Fry, a first edn Geoffrey Cumberlege OUP (Oxford University Press). Character and cast list when it was in the West End included Peter Sallis and Peter Barkworth. A 'companion' play to the 'spring' The Lady's Not For Burning' and the autumn 'Venus Observed'.


MBASSADORS THEATRE  THE PASSING DAY  JOSEPH TOMELTY   SKETCH RONALD SEARLE A VERY INTERESTING CARD MUST BE PRIOFOR TO 1951 AS IN THAT YEAR THE AMBASSADORS STARTED TO HOST THE MOUSETRAP    A GREAT CAST  NORTHERN IRISH ACTORS BY AN ULSTER PLAYRIGHT GEORGE SHIELS INCLUDING JOS OSEPH TOMELTY AND DIRECTED BY TYRONE GUTHRIE  AND A SMALL SKETCH OF TOMALTY BY RONALD SEARLE


Donald Wolfit as Tumburlaine