More Fairy Tale Love

It is officially summer. And here in south-central Kansas, it certainly feels like it.

Today is miserably hot and humid, and the mosquitoes and biting flies will not leave us alone.

As You Like It has closed. We had a good run, despite the bugs and the heat, and I had fun with my parts. I wish more of my friends would have made an effort to come see it, but I should be used to that. I'm grateful for the ones that did.

How negative I sound, right? Let me get all the negative out of the way: Friday, we were supposed to see Pinkalicious: The Musical at the children's theatre - it was the pizza show, so it was lunch, too - and I forgot all about the tickets until today. Oops. Saturday's trip to Lindsborg ended abruptly when one of my daughters got car sick, all over herself and the car, just as we were about to arrive in town. No Midsummer pictures to share. I got sick (for unrelated reasons) during the play Saturday night, which led to me spending most of Father's Day on the couch, trying to refuel for last night's show.

Boo hoo. There. I'm done. Let's move on to happier subjects now, shall we? Like the fact that in two days, the fairies will be back for International Fairy Day! And while we don't have a fairy house yet, we can certainly enjoy the day week!

I found three vintage copies of Andrew Lang's Fairy Books on the library website last week. They were in storage, but I was able to retrieve them and check them out!

The books we checked out were first published by David McKay Company, Inc., in 1948, although these are reprints from the 1960s. What caught my eye in the first place was the name listed as illustrator of The Red Fairy Book: Marc Simont! Seeing that made me hunt for any other copies published by David McKay Company. I located two more in the system. Each has a different illustrator, although they were clearly published together. The Blue Fairy Book was illustrated by Ben Kutcher, about whom I could find little information. The Yellow Fairy Book has some beautiful illustrations by Janice Holland. I know nothing about her, either, although she seems to have illustrated quite a few mid-century children's books. even lists a few prints by Janice Holland.

Here are some pretty pictures for you to enjoy!

From The Blue Fairy Book by Andrew Lang, illustrated by Ben Kutcher. David McKay Company, Inc., 1948:

From The Red Fairy Book by Andrew Lang, illustrated by Marc Simont.

From The Yellow Fairy Book by Andrew Lang, illustrated by Janice Holland.

Now if you'd like to see a fairy tale movie (or two, or three) that you've never seen before, I have a few to share. This morning, Big Sis and I watched the 1947 Soviet version of Cinderella. It was quite charming and theatrical, with songs and dances, a hilariously awful stepmother, and a pretty transformation scene. (And a few drops of Marxism in the dialogue, which definitely makes it a product of its time.) We watched the black and white version on YouTube, with the English subtitles turned on. There is a colorized version, too, which doesn't look too bad, considering the sets look very stylized and artificial anyway. That isn't meant to be an insult. I like the artifice.

For an older, made-in-America Cinderella, here is the 1914 silent film version starring Mary Pickford. Her husband at the time, Owen Moore, appears as Prince Charming.

Two years later, Famous Players-Lasky released another fairy tale film, Snow White, starring Marguerite Clark.

Little Sis is working on her post for tomorrow. Come back to see what she has to share!

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  1. It's okay to feel bummed...what a weekend! I like how you're looking forward to Fairy day. I wonder how you'll celebrate it this year:)) I have been thinking about making a fairy house.....

    1. We want to make a little fairy garden, but who knows when we'll get to it. Mr. B has plans to rebuild the big fairy playhouse, but time and money hasn't been on our side. (He wants to make a sturdier structure, using some store-bought wood for support.) We plan to make some wands, and the girls will play dress-up, and there will be a little tea party at a friend's house. I have a book to share, and our fairy doll craft to post about. ;)

  2. That is SO cool that you were in As You Like It! We love Lang's fairy tales and those are delightful looking copies! That is so neat about the various versions of Cinderella! I haven't even thought about looking for things like that! :) Thanks!

    1. It was my second time doing As You Like It. The first time was indoors, and I played Celia. Four years later, I play Le Beau (as a woman) and Audrey in the parks. Somehow, in all my years of doing theatre, it's only the third time I've repeated a show, and I have NEVER played a role for the second time. It would be interesting to try someday.

      The Langs are beautiful! I was looking for older fairy tale books from the library, but was only hitting on later reprints. As I said, these were buried in storage! I'm so glad to help them see daylight again. ;) Poor old books.

      I love my silents, and I love old foreign movies. I'm always happy to share what I find! Thanks. :)


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