Thursday, January 9, 2020

Throwback Thursday Stage Clip: Ron Moody as Fagin in "Oliver!"


Oliver!, the musical play and film created by Lionel Bart (born Lionel Begleiter) and based on Charles Dickens' novel Oliver Twist has always been one of our favorites. We have a personal connection with the production because our grandson Gil played the title role in the Encore Theatre production in Jerusalem in May 2014.

The role of Fagin was played by Ron Moody in the original London production and the movie. In the preface to the novel, Fagin is described as a "receiver of stolen goods". He is the leader of a group of children who he teaches to make their living by pickpocketing and other criminal activities, in exchange for shelter.

Moody, who was born Ronald Moodnick, was a second-generation native Briton whose father came over from Russia and whose mother was proud of her Vilna roots. A very Jewish bachelor, he shared his house with his mother and other family members in the Jewish North London suburb of Southgate.

Moody's portrayal of Fagin just oozes with Jewishness, but not in the anti-semitic way that Dickens portrayed him. On the contrary, he is humanized as a lovable crook who shows real affection for his pickpocketing children.

He reprised his role as Fagin at the 1985 Royal Variety Performance in Theatre Royal, Drury Lane before Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh.

Here is a clip from this performance in which Moody sings Reviewing the Situation, where he considers his past life and wonders about his future.

Enjoy!


A SPECIAL NOTE FOR NEW EMAIL SUBSCRIBERS:  THE VIDEO MAY NOT BE VIEWABLE DIRECTLY FROM THE EMAIL THAT YOU GET EACH DAY ON SOME COMPUTERS AND TABLETS.  YOU MUST CLICK ON THE TITLE AT THE TOP OF THE EMAIL TO REACH THE JEWISH HUMOR CENTRAL WEBSITE, FROM WHICH YOU CLICK ON THE PLAY BUTTON IN THE VIDEO IMAGE TO START THE VIDEO.





#Throwback Thursday    #TBT

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