Shirley Bassey at the 1961 Royal Variety Performance

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Dame-Shirley-BasseyToday we bring you the performance of Dame Shirley Bassey’s very first Royal Variety Performance in 1961. This year at her 9th. Royal Variety Performance Dame Shirley Bassey said: “My very first performance on The Royal Variety Performance was in 1961 and with each show it just gets better and better. I’m excited and honoured to be a part of this year’s show and to share the stage with such great talent.”

Special thanks to Terry for the video and to Jill for the photo from 1961.

Also we have a video of a programme from 2006 called ‘The Very Best of the Royal Variety Performances.

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The Royal Variety Performance is a gala evening held annually in the United Kingdom, which is attended by senior members of the British Royal Family, normally the reigning monarch. The performance showcases a variety of family entertainment, including comedy, singing, dance, circus and other speciality acts, with many of the performers being popular celebrities. The event is organised on behalf of the Entertainment Artistes Benevolent Fund, to which all proceeds are donated.

The performance is televised to the public and is considered by many to be a tradition of the Christmas season, being held late in November, or early in December. The responsibility of producing and broadcasting the performance is shared alternately between the BBC and ITV and it is becoming a tradition for the BBC to stage the performance in London’s West End and for ITV to stage it in regional theatres outside of London.

Dame Shirley Bassey performed at nine Royal Variety Performances. In the years: 1961, 1965, 1971, 1976, 1987, 1994, 2000, 2005 and the year 2014. The Royal Variety Performances show Dame Shirley Bassey at her very best. Dame Shirley would have performed also on the Royal Variety Performance from 1997 but she refused because she had to sing to a backing tape instead of a full orchestra.
rvp-krantenartikelDame Shirley Bassey’s 1994 Performance was the show’s first standing ovation in twenty years.

Dame Shirley Bassey in her dressing room waiting to go on stage before a Royal Variety Performance
Dame Shirley Bassey in her dressing room waiting to go on stage before a Royal Variety Performance

FROM THE ARCHIVE 295 -1968-

Yes - Ita Sgl - centreYes
Music written by Paolo Conte and lyrics by Vito Pallavicini.

This Italian song had been released about 1968 on a single only in Italy (UA 3142, with “To Give” on the B-side).
Vito Pallavicini was one of the most famous and prolific lyricists of Italy. He also wrote many lyrics for Dalida.

The Italian composer Paolo Conte (born 1937) became a famous singer since the 1970’s. Before that time he wrote many great songs for other artists and worked together for example with Adriano Celentano and Patty Pravo. He’s also a musician, poet and painter.

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Lyrics: (With English Translation)

Yes, nella mente ho te
Yes, in my mind there’s you

Yes, nel mio cuore ho te

Yes, in my heart there’s you

Yes, nella pelle ho te, ho te

Yes, under my skin there’s you, you

Solamente te
Just you

Tu sei padrone di me
You are my master
E che lo voglia o no, lo so
And, whether I want it or not, I know
Che ti crederò
I will believe you
E so che tua sarò
And I will be yours

Mondo, di che colore sei?
World, what’s your colour?
Uomo, e tu che cosa vuoi?
Man, what do you want from me?
Cosa vuoi?
What do you want?

Yes, io divento te
Yes, I become you
Yes, tu diventi me
Yes, you become me
E finalmente noi, oh yes
And at last we, oh yes
Siamo proprio noi
We are really us

Poi so che ti odierò
I know I will hate you someday
Ma che importanza ha, oh yes
But this is not important, oh yes
Ma che senso ha
What’s the sense of this
Se ora sei qui con me?
Now that you’re here with me?

Mondo, di che colore sei?
World, what’s your colour?
Uomo, e tu che cosa vuoi?
Man, what do you want from me?
Cosa vuoi?
What do you want?

Yes, io divento te
Yes, I become you
Yes, tu diventi me
Yes, you become me
E finalmente noi, oh yes
And at last we, oh yes
Siamo proprio noi
We are really us

Poi so che ti odierò
I know I will hate you someday
Ma che importanza ha, oh yes
But this is not important, oh yes
Ma che senso ha
What’s the sense of this
Se ora sei qui con me?
Now that you’re here with me?
Ora sei qui con me?
That you’re here with me?
Ora sei qui con me?
That you’re here with me?
Ora sei qui con me?
That you’re here with me?

(Transcribed and translated by Alessandro Cora)

 

 

The 1979 BBC-show # 2

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For this weekend we have the second 1979 BBC- show.
Parts of it recorded at Disneyworld: with guests Tony Monopoly, Paul Daniels, and Freddie Cole. Shirley’s songs: I Could Have Danced All Night, Zippety Doo Da, Give A Little Whistle, He’s A Tramp, New York Medley, If, When You Smile, When You Wish Upon A Star, Something.

A special note about the beautiful, blue dress the Dame wears while singing ‘Something’. This is what she had to say about the dress in the 1994 BBC-documentary ‘The Slate':

“Here’s another one but I’m terrified of the snake ’cause it wraps around my neck and I always think it’s going to bite me. So that doesn’t get worn too much. You see it goes around my neck … it is practically touches my boob I think … you see what I mean?  I don’t fancy being Cleopatra in this one.  I don’t want to die that way you know.  Well mind you if there was an ‘Anthony’ around I suppose I wouldn’t mind!”

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Two songs that were rejected for the British version of the second 1979 BBC Shirley Bassey Show but were broadcast in the USA: A duet with Tony Monopoly You Don’t Bring Me Flowers and When You Smile.

Unofficial Dame Shirley Bassey News and Features

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