1954. The Academy Awards named "Three Coins in The Fountain" Best Song For a Film, and the recording by The Four Aces went to Number One on Billboard.
The classic song, with memorable four part harmonies, will be performed by the guys in Forever Plaid which plays at The Media Theatre through March 31. The show focuses on a vocal group, known as The Plaids, who are similar to today's boy bands. They were never able to perform their big concert because of an accident on the way...but get the chance to return to Earth to finally charm audiences with their music. The amusing part is they are stuck in the '50's while their audience is in the present day.
Let's go back to 1954 for a bit. A house, on average, would have cost only $22,000. A Ford would have been about $2,000 give or take a couple hundred. Gas was (and here's where we would ALL like to go back to the '50's) just 21 cents per gallon!
Of course the average salary was much lower, but what a wonderful world it would be if the prices, just like the Plaids, were to come back from the era of "I Love Lucy" and Ed Sullivan! And, yes, there is an Ed Sullivan Tribute in Forever Plaid.
In 1954, a young Marilyn Monroe married Joe DiMaggio. Bill Haley and the Comets recorded "Rock Around the Clock." The Boeing 707 finally took its maiden flight after two years in development. The Bilderberg Group met for the first time, and--here's one people forget--the words "under God" were added to the Pledge of Allegiance to be used for the first time in the recitation across America in schools and at club meetings.
Miss America was broadcast on TV for the first time in 1954. The New York Giants won the World Series (defeating the Cleveland Indians). And there were two openings of franchises that would change the way people felt about overnight accommodations and burgers: The Hyatt Hotel and Burger King.
So, 1954 was a year that led us into a future from a past that many have forgotten. The TV landscape began to rule our living rooms, rock and roll changed dating and proms, and The Bilderberg Group began a worldwide view of politics that took place in one location each year to the chagrin (or pleasure) of conspiracy theorists everywhere.
Ah, the '50's! And you thought it was the 1960's that changed the world! Think again. From Communists to Godzilla and Lord of the Flies to The United States Air Force Academy, 1954 brought forth many milestones that we still, here in the good old USA and around the world, continue to accept as a part of our lives each and every day.
Travel with the Forever Plaid cast back to the '50's as they sing some of the best hits of the era in perfect harmony, with tongue-in-cheek and plenty of heart. It will do you good. The songs are the story, the nostalgia is the heartbeat, and the smile on your face is good to last another 50 years.
For tickets, visit mediatheatre.org. The show runs through March 31 (one act; 90 minutes; no intermission).