15 October 2018 | Gblakelii
Variety is the Word!
The annual Columbus Day TV special is always one of New York City's best parades as far as variety is concerned. You have personalities and performers, songs, high school bands, dance, colorful Italian folk costumes, floats relating to: Italian cities, Christopher Columbus, etc., acrobatics, fancy automobiles and on rare occasions even puppets! In fact it is 2nd only to the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in this respect. Lots of parade viewers, but never over crowded. The TV coverage not only focuses on the parade, they also interview many of those who were honored at each parade. There are sideline interviews as well. One such for this parade was the Grandson of a World War One vet who received the Medal of Honor, although it took him 11 years to actually get it! The hosts generally make one feel as if you are a part of the family, perhaps even more so in this 74th edition. They really generate a feeling of camaraderie with their anecdotes and laughter. And if you love the Italian language, don't worry, you'll get your fill here! For Juliet Papa of WINS news radio, this was her 1st time as co-host, yet she blended in very quickly. (Juliet was filling in for Maria Bartiromo.) She had worked with the other co-host, Ken Rosato of ABC-TV news, before, so they gelled well. Of course, TV, film and radio personality Joe Pisocop(his 14th year as co-host) is always a burst of sunshine with anyone! Sometimes the viewers feel the hosts get in the way of the parade but this time they were so interesting they complimented the parade 100% worth! The big difference with watching it on TV is you get the best view for the musical guests. The average parade goer misses out on this. Most years you can count on a well known opera singer. This year the performers included Louis Prima's daughter, Lena, and her band, who, not surprisingly sang a song in Italian. A great talent and a wonderful showcase for them. Young Jenna Rose and her lively dancers performed on the Daily News float. She no doubt won many more fans after her appearance! Giada Valenti, fresh from her PBS special, was in good voice and pleased the crowd as did the many others. Occasionally clips of past performers are shown. This time it was Lady Gaga from 2011. The camera coverage was very good, sometimes there were audio problems but they dealt with them nicely. They will top this one for the 75th parade, admittedly a huge challenge! They actually plan it every year starting in December.