Morecambe & Wise : Andre Previn

Perhaps, Eric and Ernie’s finest moment.

Previn is initially enthusiastic as a guest, but he is perplexed by the news that he will not, after all, be conducting Yehudi Menuhin in Mendelssohn‘s Violin Concerto, but Edvard Grieg‘s A minor Piano Concerto with Eric as piano soloist:

Previn: Goodnight, gentlemen.
Ernie: No, no! Please don’t go, Mr Preview!
Eric: Privit.
Previn: Previn.
Ernie: I can assure you that Eric is more than capable.
Previn: Well—all right. I’ll go and get my baton.
Ernie: Please do that.
Previn: It’s in Chicago.

At this point in the sketch Morecambe punches the air with his fist and ad-libs the line “Pow! He’s in! I like him! I like him!”.The television executive Michael Grade has observed that it was Previn’s expert delivery of his lines that caused Morecambe to visibly relax: “Eric’s face lights up as if to say, ‘Oh, yes! This is going to be great!”

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10 thoughts on “Morecambe & Wise : Andre Previn

  1. nectarfizz says:

    I can totally see your humor here.

  2. Matt says:

    The best bits of this are at the end, I like the part where Andre “Preview”-Previn plays the opening Grieg piano to demonstrate how it should be performed, and Eric pauses, and after a short deliberation, dismissably says, “Rubbish…”

    They had such great timimg, and although it seems spontaneous, it was all scripted down to the steps taken to reach the piano. And watching the orchestra members chuckle in the background as they poke fun out of the famous conductor, which at the time was quite unexpected. Many Brits have fond memories of this routine (one of many Christmas specials in the seventies)

  3. nectarfizz says:

    I love seeing this through your eyes…it’s a little like Saturday Night Live now..

  4. megan says:

    That was hysterical! Popular comedy shows today don’t incorporate enough “culture” like this one did. Perhaps that’s why I don’t watch them… This made my morning – thanks for sharing it!

  5. Matt says:

    Eric and Ernie were arguably Britain’s finest comedy double act, and have have been described as “the most illustrious, and the best-loved, double-act that Britain has ever produced” I think the title, “best-loved” pretty much sums them up as their comedy is as endearing now as it was back then (the Andre Previn sketch is from 1971) Eric and Ernie were great friends, and I think it shows in their performances, an ease and fluency about them that compliments each other’s talents, and their guests. They always poked fun out of their famous guests, but in such a way that made you see them in another light, so the guest shone in other ways.

  6. nectarfizz says:

    (beams) So I guess I need to find me a Eric and Ernie fan club t-shirt for you?

  7. Matt says:

    Lol, I like their comedy, I’m not sure about their T-shirts, those are probably best left in the seventies!

  8. Oh my! I grew up watching Morecambe and Wise, and I remember this episode very well. They were hilarious.

    I remember all the fuss in the newspapers too, when Angela Rippon danced on their show. It was a scandal because she kicked up her legs while dancing. lol

    How times have changed.

    Thanks for the memories. 🙂

  9. Matt says:

    Yes, very true, Paul, and she had on quite a revealing side split dress at the time, albeit a classy one. In the BBC seventies, you just never saw newsreader’s in anything but a very serious, respected light in those days, and her showing her legs made the news the next day in a sort of delighted fuss, and she had really good legs too! 🙂

    How innocent it all seems now, and innocent in an endearing way, a way that will never be able to repeat and have the same impact.

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