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John C. MacInnis

(b London, England, Dec 27, 1911; d Batemans Bay, Australia, Oct 18, 2006). American English singer, comedienne, and musical parodist. Trained at the Royal Academy of Music in London, she aspired to a career as an opera singer. She performed in several opera productions in the UK and sang for the BBC in the 1930s. Initial successes as a musical parodist began in 1940 after Russell moved to Toronto, Canada, with her mother and especially after her famous recital at Town Hall, New York, in 1951.

Through the 1950s Russell performed and recorded extensively. She appeared in opera productions (e.g. New York City Opera, Hansel and Gretel, 1953) and on Broadway (e.g. Anna Russell’s Little Show, 1955). She often styled herself as a mock-music appreciation teacher; for example, she instructed audiences on “How to Write your own Gilbert and Sullivan Opera,” comically explained the plots of famous works like Wagner’s ...

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Roger T. Dean

(b Melbourne, Australia, Oct 12, 1936). Australian double bass player, composer, and performance artist. In his late adolescence and early twenties, when he was devoted to American jazz and its culture, he played with such hard-bop stalwarts as Stewie Speers and with Keith Hounslow. In the late 1950s and early 1960s he pursued parallel careers as an artist (particularly as a sculptor) and a jazz double bass player, working mainly in Melbourne. Having stopped making sculpture in 1969, he was active in the 1970s in free jazz, particularly with Brian Brown, exploring signal processing of the double bass, as well as extended acoustic techniques on the instrument. With his partner, Dur-é Dara, he formed Connections in 1975. Soon afterwards he ceased playing and focused instead on analogue electronics and his “art” ensemble False Start, which merged and saw no division among music, theatre, art, and performance. The ensemble produced a series of “events” until ...