Saturday, 19 October 2019

Eeyore - a pointless trivioid

Anu Garg featured one of my favourite characters from children's literature in last week's sequence of Words of the Day. In the loving radio adaptation of the Winnie-the-Pooh stories for the Children's Hour of my youth, Eeyore was played by the former stage actor and stalwart of the BBC Repertory Company, Carleton Hobbs. (Pooh was Norman Shelley, who had also stood in on occasions for Winston Churchill in war-time radio broadcasts - but that is another story.)

I recall that in a celebration of his career (possibly this one?), "Hobbo" revealed that he based his characterisation of Eeyore on the distinctive intonation of Sir Ben Greet, who he would have worked for in his youth. So, always assuming that the BBC has saved at least some of the Pooh recordings, there is a record of what one of the great actor-managers of the Victorian and Edwardian eras sounded like.

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