On this day: the Queen Mother in 1979

Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother is seen here at the opening of the new library of the London School of Economics on the 10th of July, 1979.

The library – located in the Lionel Robbins Building – is in the former headquarters of major bookseller WH Smith.

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HM_Queen_Mother_at_the_formal_opening_of_the_new_library_in_the_Lionel_Robbins_Building,_10th_July_1979_(3982886515) London

1979 London British Royals England Britain VintageHM_Queen_Mother_at_the_formal_opening_of_the_new_library_in_the_Lionel_Robbins_Building,_10th_July_1979_(39828

HM_Queen_Mother_at_the_formal_opening_of_the_new_library_in_the_Lionel_Robbins_Building,_10th_July_1979_(3982886717)With Jacqueline Whiteside, library assistant.

HM Queen Mother at the formal opening of the new library in the Lionel Robbins Building, 10th July 1979 London British Royals England Britain Vintage

On this day…

The Australian Women’s Weekly ran a feature on a ballet production of Anna Karenina on the 17th of October, 1979.

Featured is ballerina Marilyn Rowe, who would go on to run The Australian Ballet School from 1998 to 2014.

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The costume in the main picture is one we hired for a production of Robert Ray’s Cinderella in 1992 (in the image below).

It was worn by one of the “ugly sisters” – a little bit of a change from its original purpose!

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On this day: the defection of Alexander Godunov

Alexander Borisovich Godunov (Nov 28, 1949-May 18, 1995), Ballet Dancer .

On the 21st of August, 1979 Soviet ballet dancer Alexander Godunov defected to the United States. His defection took place during a Bolshoi Ballet tour to New York City.

Alexander Godunov

A childhood classmate of Mikhail Baryshnikov, Godunov was one of the Bolshoi’s star dancers, and the gold medal winner at the 1973 Moscow International Ballet Competition.

He was also a known actor in the USSR.

Alexander Godunov People 21st April 1985 Cover

Godunov was married to a company soloist at the time of his defection, though his wife did not defect with him.

THE MONEY PIT Tom Hanks, Alexander Godunov, 1986.

He went on to become a principal dancer of American Ballet Theatre until he had a falling out with Baryshnikov, after which he toured internationally and became a known actor in Hollywood.

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Godunov was found dead in his home in May, 1995.

On this day: John Wayne died in 1979

John Wayne In The Undefeated

I want to say something about John Wayne’s career… but I just can’t.

On the 11th of June, this Oscar-winning right-wing extremist died of cancer at age seventy-two.

A man who turned down major film roles for not being ‘patriotic enough’ he was a bit of a, well, let’s say he was a tosser.

He might be remembered as an icon by many, but when I hear his name, I remember that he said things like this:

“I believe in white supremacy, until the blacks are educated to a point of responsibility. I don’t believe giving authority and positions of leadership and judgment to irresponsible people … I don’t feel we did wrong in taking this great country away from [the Native Americans] … Our so-called stealing of this country from them was just a matter of survival. There were great numbers of people who needed new land, and the Indians were selfishly trying to keep it for themselves.”

Between him and Sean Connery, I really have to wonder what’s wrong with people. Why are we still idolising this type of person?