Audio help More spoken articles. Flanders and Swann. Michael Flanders Donald Swann. Authority control MusicBrainz : dc50b-bafdba0e9f Categories : British comedy duos Angel Records artists British comedy musical groups English musical duos Parlophone artists Musical groups established in establishments in the United Kingdom. Namespaces Article Talk. Views Read Edit View history. Help Community portal Recent changes Upload file.
Download as PDF Printable version. Wikimedia Commons. Flanders left and Swann in Parlophone , Angel. Fortune Theatre suspended one month because of Flanders' pneumonia.
Edinburgh Festival "At the Drop of a Kilt". Donald was born in Llanelli on 30 Sept into a family of amateur musicians, both parents refugees from the Russian Revolution. His upbringing was one of Russian folk song and four-hand piano reductions of the Russian and European Romantics.
He remained largely self-taught in spite of being an external student at the RCM while still at Westminster School. In Donald was awarded an exhibition to Christ Church, Oxford, to read modern languages but, after a year, the war intervened. As a convinced pacifist with a life-long quest of religious faith and doubt, he switched from his earlier Anglicanism and found a spiritual home under the tolerant umbrella of the Quakers.
Donald registered as a conscientious objector and served with the FAU Friends' Ambulance Unit in Egypt, Palestine and, more importantly, in Greece whose music and culture became a life-long passion and influence.
As a student he wrote serious settings of poets such as Pushkin, Froissart and Ronsard primarily love songs. A number of these early compositions can be found in two recent volumes of The Songs Of Donald Swann. Donald's comic sense came to the fore in his versions of 'Senex' and 'Joan Hunter Dunn' by John Betjeman A Collection of Songs , which were aired, in the undergraduate revues he was extemporizing for Sandy Wilson.
A meeting with Michael Flanders , now wheelchair-bound with polio and working in radio, led to a continuation of their schoolboy writing partnership. Flanders found that his spoken introductions were as well received by the audience as the songs themselves. Swann recalled:. The show opened on 31 December at the New Lindsey. No West End shows were opening on that evening, and consequently, as Swann put it, "quite a number of critics turned up on spec. Swann, bent over his piano like a small mad scientist agog over some wild experiment, ideally complements the bearded suavity of Mr.
Flanders, who exudes from his wheelchair the robust authority of him who came to dinner. The two-man show was performed with Flanders in a wheelchair as a result of polio contracted in and Swann at a grand piano on an otherwise empty stage. A second revue called At the Drop of Another Hat was produced in Each performance ended with the "Hippopotamus" song, in which the audience was encouraged to join in, followed, in Britain, by a musical rendition of the Lord Chamberlain's regulations.
Most of the numbers were performed as duets. Solos are noted in the table below. Company No. Register here. More Information. Got any news or live dates?EMI Comedy: Flanders & Swann: A Drop Of Hilarity From Flanders & Swann by Flanders & Swann () by Flanders & Swann | Sep 18, Audio CD.