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November 30, 2006

Video - Art Deco Gala Dance on the Queen Mary

Here is a video I made in 2005 of the Saturday night gala at the first "Art Deco Festival" on the Queen Mary. This was a joint program of the Art Deco Society of Los Angeles and the RMS Foundation.

The band is once again Mora's Modern Rhythmists. The vocalist is Damon Kirsch.

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Posted by Walter at 08:19 AM

Video - The Gold Rush Camp at the Huntington Library

This is a video we made of the Gold Rush living history program we put together for the Huntington Library. This is actually the second such program we did for them (we did the first of these for the Autry). This was part of a series they called "Step into a story", and we were the world of Mark Twain and Brett Harte.

Over the years, we have pitched a lot of different themes to the Huntington, to include a medieval market fair for their Chaucer exhibit, but they have us pigeon-holed as "The Gold Rush people" and never call us for anything else. Sigh.

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Posted by Walter at 08:14 AM

Video - The Liberty Tea

Here is a video of the first "Lanterman Ragtime Tea Dance" which we called "The Liberty Tea". Since it was on Armistice Day and the house was built in 1914, we went with a World War One theme. It became clear pretty quickly that the theme didn't really have much of a "hook", so we dropped the war connection in later Lanterman House events, and just called it a Ragtime Tea Dance.

Music is provided by Ian Whitcomb and Dean Mora along with Terry Gleny on the violin.

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Posted by Walter at 08:10 AM

Video - Old California Fandango

Here is a video I made of a "Fandango" dance demonstration we did for the Arcadia History Museum a few years back. The band are "Los Californios".

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Posted by Walter at 08:07 AM

November 29, 2006

The 1929 "Crash Bash"

To commemorate the 70th anniversary of the 1929 Wall Street Crash, the Art Deco Society of Los Angeles and the Lively Arts History Association cooperated on "The Crash Bash". It was a Jazz Age dance at the Wilshire Ebell, featuring Mora's Modern Rhythmists with vocals by Kayre Morrison and Richard Halpern.

The camera work is by Tom Lewis. It was edited by Walter Nelson (me).

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Posted by Walter at 08:28 AM

Amara as "Little Egypt" Dances to "Egyptian Ella"

Here's a bit from our 2003 "Gatsby Night", featuring our floor show--the talented Amara, doing a belly dance cum Charleston to the Dean Mora and the Modern Rhythmists. The tune is the late 20s novelty hit "Egyptian Ella".

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Posted by Walter at 08:18 AM

Video of 2002 Jane Austen Evening

Here is a video of the 2002 Jane Austen Evening. It also has the distinction of being the first time I ever edited a video on a computer.

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Posted by Walter at 08:11 AM

November 27, 2006

Video of the Schwartz Sisters

My wife Sheila runs a group called "The Schwartz Sisters" who take their inspiration from the great girl groups of the '30s and '40s, like the Andrews Sisters and Boswell Sisters. Here they are in their USO show mode. It is in the form of a "Movietone" newsreel.

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Posted by Walter at 02:27 PM

Historical Production of Restoration Comedy: The Way of the World

For those who may be interested in seeing a production of William Congreve's 18th Century comedy "The Way of the World", done in correct period costume, here's some information on a performance that is running through December:

We are, in fact, promised a Minuet finale.

I haven't seen it, but it sounds like a lot of fun.

Posted by Walter at 10:44 AM

November 26, 2006

Video of 2005 Jane Austen Evening

Here is a video of the Jane Austen Evening in January of 2005. It features my wife Sheila singing a traditional aire, a lady impersonating Jane Austen and lots of Regency style English Country Dance.

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Posted by Walter at 02:05 PM

November 25, 2006

Video of the Aviators' Ball

To celebrate the centennial of flight in 2003, we staged the "Aviators' Ball", a Ragtime dance which featured the music of the era, to include aviation songs like "Come take a trip in my airship" and "Wait 'til you get them up in the air. The band was Ian Whitcomb and the Bungalow Boys, with additional vocals by my wife Sheila Murphy-Nelson.

Here's a video.

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Posted by Walter at 02:11 PM

November 14, 2006

Joe Wasielewski

It's fallen to me to pass on the sad news of the death of Joe Wasielewski, the principal founder of the long running "Saint Nicholas Ball". Joe was a chef at the Biltmore when he started the event, which became an annual tradition there for many years. After new Biltmore management made the environment less friendly, the dinner dance moved to the Hollywood Roosevelt. It ran there for a few years until Joe's health and other issues caused it to fold.

Joe passed away on October 15th after a long illness, in a monastary in Northern California. His sister Fran and his friends are planning a suitable remembrance for him some time soon.

Posted by Walter at 09:46 AM

November 10, 2006

Web Suggestions - Being Found by Search Engines

As part of my continuing effort to help folks out there who are trying to maintain a web presence for themselves or their organization with little or no training, here are a few suggestions on how to be found by search engines like Google.

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Posted by Walter at 10:24 AM