October 18, 2011

Babalu! "I Love Lucy"

One of my favorite television shows growing up was "I Love Lucy."  We had several episodes on VHS (remember those?) and I would watch them over and over and over....

My two favorite episodes were when Lucy and Ethel worked in the chocolate factory (oh how I wanted to eat chocolate!) and the episode where Lucy makes (or attempts to make) wine from stomping grapes in a huge vat.  That looked like so much fun!

So you can imagine my delight when the Library of Congress opened up a special exhibit: "I Love Lucy: An American Legend" in honor of the 60th anniversary of the show's debut.

The idea for "I Love Lucy" originated when CBS considered transferring its successful radio program, "My Favorite Husband," starring Ball , to the then-new medium of television. Ball’s real-life husband, Arnaz, became her costar.  Ball and Arnaz were apart much of the time because Arnaz was touring with his band and Ball was acting.  She saw the show as the opportunity for them to do something together and salvage their marriage.

I stopped by the exhibit on Friday before Kern and I went to a special concert honoring Arnaz's Cuban music in the Coolidge Auditorium at the Library on Saturday evening.

I was mesmerized by her beauty!

This is a manuscript drum part for "Babalu" from the 1940s!
Ball and Arnaz did not have children for almost 10 years after their marriage.  They had been married in City Hall, so Ball insisted they re-marry in a church.  They did, and Lucie and Desi Jr. were born in the years following!
They were the "First Family"

Sheet music: "I love Lucy and she loves me...we're as happy as two can be!"

Their son and daughter were part of the evening's music. Singer Lucie Arnaz headlined the evening which paid homage to orchestrations of the Desi Arnaz Orchestra.  She told hilarious stories and reminisced about her childhood.  

I wish I had taken more photos but I was too busy dancing in my seat to the Cuban music!  There was a full 16 person orchestra.  It was a wonderful evening!

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