Saturday, November 14, 2009

Raquel Welch Sci-Fi Dance

We all thought the world of Raquel Welch during our formative years but I look at her often now and wonder why (other than the obvious hormonal issues). Her delivery was often terrible and on talk show appearances her breathy attempts at serious topics showed her to be not the smartest sex symbol of all time. When she started her musical career (where I aaaalmost saw her at the legendary Beverly Hill Supper Club in 1976) it became obvious her talents didn't lie there either. There are still plenty of iconic photos of Raquel that I enjoy seeing but I rarely think of her the way I once did. All that said, she danced pretty well in this 1970 sci-fi strangeness!

3 comments:

damonclay77 said...

Raquel garnered positive reviews for her World Tour (see following excerpt form People Magazine circa 1976 - sounds like we both missed a good show!) She also received great reviews for the Musical Comedy "Woman of the Year" where she broke box office records.

Best, Clay

People excerpt:

The dressing room door with a star on it pops open and two scared brown eyes peer out. "Help!" Raquel yells. "I forgot the dance!" It's opening night and the star is having a bout of nerves. Understandably. The act that conquered Paris has been rewritten, rescored, rechoreographed and partly recostumed at a further cost of some $50,000, and it's about to debut before an audience that includes an ambush of New York critics. "God!" Raquel groans as she waits for her entrance. "How I wish I were Liza Minnelli!"

As she hits the circle of light, the audience gasps. Her liquid form has been spooned into a gown whose tawny glimmer grades so subtly into the tanned flesh that the eye can hardly tell where the body ends and the dress begins. She lifts the mike and belts the opening bars of Boogie Fever—and the audience gasps again. The microphone is dead! It's a moment that might rattle a Sinatra, but Welch doesn't flinch. With a gesture of command she silences the orchestra, waits calmly till the mike comes alive, then piles into the song as if nothing had happened. The audience is alert in a new way. People had come to glimpse a body; they have glimpsed an individual.

As the show goes on, the glimpses multiply. Her voice is her own, not mini-Minnelli or vanilla Ella. It can rise to an alley cat wail or sink to a low-gear moan. And her movements, as choreographed by director Rob Iscove, are a sensuous spectacle; even on those seven-inch heels, she struts her stuff like a panther in pants. As the show ends, Raquel gets a stand-up ovation, followed by a bravo even in the New York Times: "Surprisingly stylish...not at all the empty-headed charmer."

wiec? said...

by accident i just slammed my finger in the car door. i was in a pretty dour mood. then i saw this video. and like magic I'm all cheered up.

thanks for sharing Book Steve!

damonclay77 said...

Here's a good singing number around 1968:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z4NF_qonNBo

Enjoy!
Clay