excerpt from 'Southbank Centre Archive' (197 words)

excerpt from 'Southbank Centre Archive' (197 words)

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Southbank Centre Archive

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George Melly: In the immediate post war Festival of Britain the Royal Festival Hall seemed to us very encouraging, and as there was a boom in Revivalist jazz led by Humphrey Lyttelton, it was not long before the Marquis of Donegal arranged for a command perfiormance in front of the very young Princess Elizabeth.  We were all very flalttered and my father even came down from Liverpool to come to it.  Donegal told me later that my rendition of Frankie and Johnnie "very much amused the Princess".  Most of the band leaders including Mick Mulligan were introduced to her afterwards, but I, as an anarchist and surrealist was quite relieved not to be.  I watched with amusement how they reacted, like most people do when introduced to royalty, as if they had been hit violently in the stomach while bending over and laughing.  It was a special day for all that, and although I have appeared quite frequently in one hall or another of the South Bank Centre I don't suppose anything will ever surpass that first visit.  I am looking forward to the "refurbishment" with mixed feelings.  I hope it won't spoil my early adventure there.

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excerpt from 'Southbank Centre Archive' (197 words)


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