Tuesday, 9 April 2013

Genuflect, genuflect, genuflect!

"Apart from that Mrs Lincoln, how did you enjoy the play?"

I owe one of my most-used catchprases to one of the geniuses of sardonic repartee, the singer-songwriter and pianist Tom Lehrer, who celebrates his 85th birthday today.

Stalwart of the hugely popular satirical TV show That Was The Week That Was in the late 60s, Mr Lehrer apparently became disillusioned with showbiz fairly soon afterwards - some say he decided to retire when the award of the Nobel Peace Prize went to Henry Kissinger ("political satire just became obsolete" were his words).

Needless to say, if Mr Lehrer were never to write another word, he has left us a fine legacy of classics...

The Vatican Rag

Poisoning Pigeons in the Park

I am not alone in wishing the great man a happy birthday - the BBC celebrated with a whole programme dedicated to Mr Lehrer on Radio 4 last weekend.

Thomas Andrew Lehrer (born 9th April 1928)

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