Monday, March 28, 2011

Wenche Foss 1917-2011

It wasn't unexpected as she had been ill for some time - in fact, some months ago, she wasn't expecting to make it till Christmas - but it's still so incredibly sad. She was one of a kind. She really was. We're all supposedly one of a kind, but let's face it, most of us aren't really that special. :-) But Wenche Foss was very special. What a woman! For one thing, a fantastically talented actress. A consummate professional. I remember one time I saw her at the National Theater in some play with Toralv Maurstad ... I don't remember what it was called, but he played George Bernard Shaw and she played some woman that Shaw had a relationship with. It was just the two of them on stage the whole time. She was so impressive. This was after she had retired, of course. She had so many lines, and she remembered almost all of them ... when she didn't, she handled it like a star. You barely even noticed. So classy. :-)

Anyway, in addition to being such a wonderful actor and a natural born diva, she was also by all accounts a wonderful person. She really did a lot for the causes she believed in. For those not in the know, this was first and foremost the rights of the mentally disabled. She also changed a lot of lives for people in this group by the very valuable example she set. When she was 36 years old she had her first child - the first of two sons, the second of whom is now the mayor of Oslo. :-) This little boy had Down's syndrome. At that time - this was in 1953 - children like him were something people were ashamed of, they were kept away from the public eye and nobody talked about it. But Foss refused to be ashamed of her child and was open about his disability. She did more than anyone else, I think, to change people's minds on this issue.

Unfortunately, the boy got leukemia and died when he was only four years old. :-( So she had sadness in her life as well as success. But when you live to be 93, what more can you really hope for. :-) She was a fantastic woman and a fantastic artist. R.I.P.

But still and all, life goes on. Look what I found on my way to the subway this afternoon. Yay!!!

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