Continued from page 2
WELCOME TO ENGLAND
Towards the end of every
show was a long sketch called "Welcome To England". These
formed a series, repeating every 13 or 14 weeks. They
followed the adventures of a class of students. Peter
usually played the English person they had to deal with
(teacher, landlord, customs officer, police officer, hotel
receptionist, tour guide). The students were all
stereotypes. Though this changed over the years, our basic
class consisted of Karen as a Mexican, Guy as a Swiss-Arab
(cf. Swiss German, Swiss French, Swiss Italian), Alan as
Fritz Beckenbauer, a German and Nick (then later Patrick) as
a Japanese. When Chris Owen joined us, we added a Frenchman
named Valerie Giscard De Gaulle. Later, when we were without
Chris, Anna Karsay added a French woman in his place, and
Ken Shelley then added an Italian (Alfredo Romeo). Peter
replaced Alan as the German for some time too. Confused?
Imagine how we felt!
Welcome To England, February 1976 Alan, Peter, Chris, Karen, Patrick
A sequence I always liked was from 'First Day At School' where the teacher is trying to learn names. Fritz Beckenbauer (played by Alan) is much more advanced than this class of beginners.
Teacher: Fry-tz Beecknboom is there a Frytz Beeckenboom in the class?
There were points that students identified with then and now. Horrendous mispronunciation of their names, classes thrown together with a wide ability range, the mistakes that happen naturally.
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