Current Weather
The Spy FM

Still In Love With ‘Lucy’ On Her 100th Birthday

Filed by KOSU News in Art & Life.
August 6, 2011

Lucille Ball was born 100 years ago in Jamestown, N.Y. She died in 1989 — but appearing on screens all over the world has made her immortal.

Ball made movies, starred in musicals, and ran her own major studio. But for millions of people — perhaps even billions by now — she was simply Lucy of I Love Lucy, the 1950s sitcom she created with her husband, Desi Arnaz.

Ball, who was an accomplished dancer, plays Lucy Ricardo, a showgirl who marries Ricky, a Cuban bandleader with a nightclub act (you may remember his signature entrance, “Loooooocy, I’m home!”) Their best friends, Ethel and Fred Mertz, are old vaudevillians who live down the hall, and although Lucy says that she’s happy to be a 1950s homemaker, she spends many episodes looking for ways to break into show business. (In one episode, she has a chance to do a commercial for an elixir — but discovers during rehearsal that it contains a little alcohol.)

I Love Lucy became popular all over the world because Lucy’s lovely, rubbery face, exquisite timing and expert pratfalls needed no translation. The studio that she founded with Desi Arnaz, Desilu Productions, created many signature sitcoms, including The Dick Van Dyke Show and The Andy Griffith Show.

In many ways, I Love Lucy was the sitcom that created the form that survives today: three cameras rolling before a live audience, and the cast of likable characters thrust into unlikely situations. (Like the time Lucy and Ethel took jobs in a candy factory, couldn’t wrap chocolates fast enough — and tried to hide them in their mouths.)

A number of years ago, a producer and I went to a village in India for a story, in a place where reruns of I Love Lucy were on for much of the day. We might have been the only Americans the people in that village had ever met. Perhaps because of that, they called us “Lucy and Ricky.”

We never corrected them. Who wouldn’t love being confused with two people who made so many people laugh? [Copyright 2011 National Public Radio]

Leave a Reply

2PM to 3PM The Dinner Party

The Dinner Party

Think NPR meets Vanity Fair. In each episode, hosts Rico Gagliano & Brendan Francis Newnam talk with some of the world's most interesting celebrities, and along the way equip you with bad jokes, fresh drink recipes, hot food finds, odd news stories... and etiquette tips from the likes of Henry Rollins and Dick Cavett. It's all you need to get an edge in your weekend conversations. Past guests include Michelle Williams, Judd Apatow, Kid Cudi and Sir Richard Branson. Wallpaper magazine calls The Dinner Party one of the Top 40 Reasons To Live In The USA.

Listen Live Now!

3PM to 4PM The Splendid Table

The Splendid Table

Hosted by award-winning Lynne Rossetto Kasper, The Splendid Table is a culinary, culture and lifestyle program that celebrates food and its ability to touch the lives and feed the souls of everyone.

View the program guide!

4PM to 5PM Weekend All Things Considered

Weekend All Things Considered

View the program guide!

Upcoming Events in your area (Submit your event today!)

Streaming audio and podcasts

Stream KOSU on your smartphone

Phone Streaming

SmartPhone listening options on this page are intended for many iPhones, Blackberries, etc. with low-cost software applications available to listen to our full-time web streams, both News on KOSU-1 and Classical on KOSU-2.

Learn more about our complete range of streaming services

We're perfecting the patient experience - Stillwater Medical Center