Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Seven Degrees of Sherlock Holmes #60 - (It has been a while) Petula Clark

I love old British War movies. The ones made during or around the time of WW2.
My father served in the RAF. I had aunts and uncles who served in various capacities during the war, from ATA to North Africa. From Burma to a POW in Germany.
So that may explain my fascination with the films.
Two of my many favorites are; 'Medal for the General' and 'I know where I'm going'.
And to my surprise when I first learned of it a young actress by the name of Petula Clark appeared in both.
I think for most of my generation Petula Clark was known more as the singer who had a hit with 'Downton' in the early 60's. A song that was the beginning of a renewed career for her.

But Petula had a very big career starting in the early 1940's.
This from Wikipedia; In October 1942 nine-year-old Clark made her radio debut while attending a BBC broadcast with her father. She was there trying to send a message to an uncle stationed overseas, but the broadcast was delayed by an air raid. During the bombing, the producer requested that someone perform to settle the jittery theatre audience, and she volunteered a rendering of "Mighty Lak' a Rose" to an enthusiastic response. She then repeated her performance for the broadcast audience, launching a series of some 500 appearances in programmes designed to entertain the troops.[5] In addition to radio work, Clark frequently toured the United Kingdom with fellow child performer Julie Andrews. Nicknamed the "Singing Sweetheart", she performed for George VIWinston Churchill and Bernard Montgomery. Clark also became known as "Britain's Shirley Temple"[6] and was considered a mascot by the British Army, whose troops plastered her photos on their tanks for good luck as they advanced into battle.

So, with no further ado. . .

Petula Clark - 1932

took part in the 1951 film 'White Corridors'

which also featured James Donald (1917-1993) (who could probably have a million Sherlockian connections of his own as many wonderful movies he has been in.)

took part in the movie 'Beau Brummell' 1954

which also featured the wonderfully recognizable Robert Morley (1908-1992)

who, as we should know, played Mycroft Holmes in 1965's 'A Study in Terror'

One fascinating thing about some of the these old films is to see how many movies these actors would sometimes appear together in.

This is not the only Sherlockian connection for Petula Clark, but was the first one I followed to the end.

So, there you have it, there you are.

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