General question

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shirochan
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General question

Post by shirochan » Thu Apr 14, 2011 10:01 am

Hello everyone! I have a question.

I read Hello magazine which has Richard Arnolds interview with JB from Cannes.

In the interview,John said to Bill "I will have you in a dress before you can whistle for Dick Whittington."

I'm not quite following this. Dick Whittington is an actor who played panto?

I'm so sorry for creating a new topic, if it's inappropriate here, please delete. Thank you. :)

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aresnz
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Re: General question

Post by aresnz » Thu Apr 14, 2011 10:35 am

shirochan wrote:Hello everyone! I have a question.

I read Hello magazine which has Richard Arnolds interview with JB from Cannes.

In the interview,John said to Bill "I will have you in a dress before you can whistle for Dick Whittington."

I'm not quite following this. Dick Whittington is an actor who played panto?

I'm so sorry for creating a new topic, if it's inappropriate here, please delete. Thank you. :)

Don't worry about this Shirochan. I'm not familiar with Dick Whittington either. :D So, can anyone enlighten us on this topic? Many thanks.
Lori

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kate
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Re: General question

Post by kate » Thu Apr 14, 2011 12:19 pm

dick whitington is a comman panto theme ,its about a boy who dreams bout becoming mayor of london or something ,i saw a production of it a few yrs back but cant remember the basic plot :/

rheidol
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Re: General question

Post by rheidol » Thu Apr 14, 2011 12:28 pm

shirochan wrote:Hello everyone! I have a question.

I read Hello magazine which has Richard Arnolds interview with JB from Cannes.

In the interview,John said to Bill "I will have you in a dress before you can whistle for Dick Whittington."

I'm not quite following this. Dick Whittington is an actor who played panto?

I'm so sorry for creating a new topic, if it's inappropriate here, please delete. Thank you. :)

Hello!! Nice to see you on here again - I'm sure we've all been thinking of you in all the terrible things you've been going through over there. :) :hug:

It's one of those jokes that doesn't QUITE make sense - Dick Whittington is the title role in one of the most British traditional pantos - one of 'hero' pantos that JB might get around to doing sometime, in fact! There's no connection with whistling...John could have substituted the name Aladdin/Robin Hood/Robinson Crusoe & it would still have made as much sense as it does...

It's one of those very rare traditional pantos/stories that's actually based on a bit of fact...pre-panto era, the first play about him seems to date from 1605....

The story of the panto: poor boy Dick Whittington walks all the way to London from Gloucestershire to 'make his fortune', having heard that the streets are 'paved with gold', & on the way he meets a magical talking cat, who becomes his friend. Tommy the cat is an amazingly good ratter (cat who kills rats) & so they get taken on as servants to the rich Alderman Fitzwarren, who has been having great trouble with rats in his shop. Dick falls in love with his daughter Alice Fitzwarren... The baddie is King Rat, who tries to make life difficult for Dick, Tommy & Alice all the way through - he frames Dick for theft so that the Alderman will dismiss him, and Dick sets out for home, stopping to rest on Highgate Hill (a steep hill to the north of the city), where in a dream he hears all the bells of London/Bow Bells speaking to him - "Turn again, Whittington, thrice Lord Mayor of London". So, when he wakes, he goes back to clear his name, then 'makes his fortune' by travelling to Morocco with Tommy to rid the rich Sultan of the plague of rats in his palace. King Rat makes sure the ship is wrecked on the way, but they all survive, & King Rat is finally defeated. Dick is now so rich that when he gets back to London he can marry Alice, become an Alderman himself & become Lord Mayor of London.

Alderman = literally from 'elder man' - a leading city businessman, usually from one of the medieval Guilds (organisations of particular traders, i.e. grocers, tailors, goldsmiths....) - the Guilds have been at the heart of London history since medieval times, & run many charities/schools, etc - many have guild halls that still exist as centres for their activities (mostly eating & drinking, apart from charity!). The Lord Mayor of London is elected every year from amongst the Aldermen, & Mansion House opposite the Bank of England is his official residence - when he takes up the post in November every year, there's a big parade through the City, The Lord Mayor's Show.

We also now have a Mayor of London, but that's a political post....

And the history: Richard (Dick) Whittington (d. 1453) WAS a poor boy from Gloucestershire who travelled to London to work, & married Alderman's daughter Alice Fitzwarren. He did 'make his fortune' as a mercer (general merchant, selling cloth, etc) & became an Alderman and a Member of Parliament, & was elected to be Lord Mayor 4 times. They had no children, so he left his vast fortune to charity, financing churches, hospitals, etc - there is still a Whittington Hospital, & it's on Highgate Hill - nearby is a stone commemorating him, with a statue of a cat on it. His charities STILL support the poor after all these hundreds of years - the Mercers Company gives grants in his name, & there are almshouses for elderly people in Surrey financed from his legacy. He made a lot of his money by bringing coal from the mining area of Newcastle down to London - the ships that carried the coal were called cats....

Here endeth the essay!! :)

Ooo, I enjoyed that - love panto, love history.....:D

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kate
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Re: General question

Post by kate » Thu Apr 14, 2011 1:38 pm

i remember now,its actaully a fun panto when i saw it ,it was for an actor i like and there was loads of jokes on his message board at the time bout the title ,if john does it one day i bet he ll make the same jokes

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shirochan
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Re: General question

Post by shirochan » Thu Apr 14, 2011 3:04 pm

Arenz
Thanks! I'm glad I'm not only one who is not familiar with Dick Whittington. :-)

rheidol and kate
Thank you! Thank you! Than you so much for explaining it so clearly! It's very interesting to learn the history of panto! And I can understand why John referred to Dick Whittington there. Now I've noticed Aladdin/Robin Hood are all basically the same 'hero' pantos. Once again, thank you so much for taking the time.

And thank you so much for your kind words about our country. We are suffering form the triple disaster(earthquakes, tsunami and nuclear accident) now, but I believe we will overcome the difficulty. We really appreciate kind wishes from all over the world. :)

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aresnz
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Re: General question

Post by aresnz » Thu Apr 14, 2011 5:05 pm

shirochan wrote:Arenz
Thanks! I'm glad I'm not only one who is not familiar with Dick Whittington. :-)

rheidol and kate
Thank you! Thank you! Than you so much for explaining it so clearly! It's very interesting to learn the history of panto! And I can understand why John referred to Dick Whittington there. Now I've noticed Aladdin/Robin Hood are all basically the same 'hero' pantos. Once again, thank you so much for taking the time.

And thank you so much for your kind words about our country. We are suffering form the triple disaster(earthquakes, tsunami and nuclear accident) now, but I believe we will overcome the difficulty. We really appreciate kind wishes from all over the world. :)

I too wish to thank rheidol and kate for explaining the Dick Whittington mystery. That really was interesting & a fun read.

Shirochan, I also want to let you know it's great seeing you back on the forum. Your country has been going through so much and the ups and downs don't seem to end. Your family, Shiro and others are always in my prayers. :hug:
Lori

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shirochan
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Re: General question

Post by shirochan » Fri Apr 15, 2011 9:10 am

aresnz wrote: I too wish to thank rheidol and kate for explaining the Dick Whittington mystery. That really was interesting & a fun read.

Shirochan, I also want to let you know it's great seeing you back on the forum. Your country has been going through so much and the ups and downs don't seem to end. Your family, Shiro and others are always in my prayers. :hug:

Thank you so much for your kind words,aresnz! Much appreciated! *hugs back*

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