For the next six years, they gathered around black and white sets, doubled over in laughter, as Lucy and Desi Ricardo and their neighbors, the Mertzes, clowned and cavorted in zany situations backed by the Latin beat of Desi’s band.
The winner of four Emmy Awards and multiple nominations for the show and its stars was followed by The Lucille Ball-Desi Arnaz Show from 1957-1960. Today the most beloved couple in television continue to bring joy to the world in syndication. Best of all, their legacy is preserved by the Library of Congress in an exhibit of their lives and accomplishments. It will be on display to the public until January 2012.
Throughout this year, the 60th anniversary of “I Love Lucy” and the 100th birthday of Lucille Ball have been honored by BABALU!, a celebration of their lives and gifts of music. Hosted by Lucie Arnaz and Desi Arnaz, Jr., BABALU! was first performed at New York’s 92nd Street Y in January as a tribute to their father. His brilliant and lively orchestrations were performed by the Desi Arnaz Orchestra. Desi, Jr. wanted to use his father’s original charts, some of them ten to twelve pages long, but they were too fragile, so the Library of Congress copied them free of charge. The New York concert was followed by one in Miami this past summer and a third in Washington at the Library of Congress’s Coolidge Auditorium in October. The Washington concert was taped for future presentation.
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