18 December 2011

"Simple Gifts"

This was a unique Christmas special presented on PBS in 1977 and repeated for a few years afterward, then it disappeared. I found a videotape copy on e-Bay a couple of years ago. Together are stitched six animated segments and an introduction, all in different styles: limited animation, stills combined with animation, etc. Colleen Dewhurst introduces the program.

  • The Introduction
  • From Moss Hart's book Act One
  • "Lost and Found" (done in the style of the old "Toonerville Trolley" animated silent cartoons)
  • "The Great Frost" from Virginia Woolf's Orlando (This is probably the most remembered sequence of this program; many people think it was a separated animated piece)
  • An excerpt from the diary of young Theodore Roosevelt
  • A narrative of the 1914 Christmas Truce
  • And lastly the "No Room at the Inn," by R. O. Blechman
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