Monday, September 25, 2017

RIP Jan Triska

Czech actor Jan Triska, who moved to the U.S. after being banned by the Czechoslovak Communist regime, died, more than a day after he fell from Prague's iconic Charles Bridge. He was 80. Triska was the narrator of the Czech animated western  “Úkryt cerného Billa” (The Hiding of Black Bill) 1965.

European Western Comic Books ~ Mustang Gray

Mustang Gray was supposedly based on a real Texas Ranger by the same name. The comic book series was created by Italian artists and published by Mercury Editoriale and was also published in the UK magazine, Western Picture Library. One of the artists was Camillo Zuffi (1912-2002). The main artist, however, was Armando Bonato who later worked on the fumetti, via Diabolik. From a quick glance, Mustang Gray seems very similar to Tex Willer, the best known of the Italian Western comics. Mustang Gray consisted of 12 issues from 1958-1960 with 100 pages per issue.

Camillo Zuffi was born in Bergamo, Italy on April 19, 1912. He was the creator of 'Il Piccolo Sceriffo', together with writer/publisher Tristiano Torelli, which first appeared in 1948. He also worked with the characters 'La Jena', 'Bonnie' and 'Tex Tone'. He worked primarily for the Italian and French markets, but was also present in Britain with 'Kit Carson' in Cowboy Picture Library and 'Mustang Grey' in Pearson's Western Picture Library. He illustrated several issues of 'I Misteri della Giungla Nera' from 1977. Zuffi died in Italy on April 4, 2002.

Special Birthdays

Michael Madsen (actor) is 60 today.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Who Are Those Composer? ~ Carmelo A. Bernaola

Carmelo Alonso Bernaola was born in Ochandiano, Biscaye, Spain on July 16, 1929.  His father was Amado Alonso and his mother was Rufina Bernaola. He later chose to use his mother's surname, rather than his father's. When he was 7 years old, he and his family moved to Medina de Pomar (Burgos), where he received his first musical education. In 1943 he moved to the city of Burgos, where he studied with professor Blanco and he also played the clarinet with the local Engineers Academy Band.

In 1951 he obtained a job as clarinetist with the Army Ministry Band and he moved to Madrid. In Madrid Conservatory he studied counterpoint, fugue and composition with Massó, Calés Pina and Julio Gómez. In 1953 he got a new job as clarinetist with the Madrid City Band, but in 1959 he obtained the Prix de Rome and moved to Italy.

In Italy he studied composition with Goffredo Petrassi in the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia and conducting with Sergiu Celibidache in the Accademia Chigiana di Siena. In addition, during this period he participated in the Darmstadt International Summer Courses under the direction of Bruno Maderna and Olivier Messiaen and there he met Pierre Boulez, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Luigi Nono and Ramón Barce. In Spain, he completed his studies with André Jolivet and Alexander Tansman in Santiago de Compostela.

In 1962 he returned to Madrid, where he was harmony teacher at the Madrid Conservatory and clarinet player with the City Band. He was also a scholar at Valladolid University.

From 1981 until his retirement he was the director of the Conservatory of Vitoria-Gasteiz. He died in Madrid, Spain on June 5, 2002, at the age of 72.

BERNAOLA, Carmelo (aka Carmelo A. Bernaola) (Carmelo Alonso Bernaola) [7/16/1929, Ochandiano, Biscaye, Spain – 6/5/2002, Madrid, Madrid, Spain (cancer)] – composer, conductor, musician (clarinet), actor.
Cut Throats Nine - 1970

Special Birthdays

Abel Salazar (actor) would have been 100 today, he died in 1995.

John Ireson (composer, singer, musician) would have been 80 today, he died in 2016.