Scenes from the past include rare footage of the 1928 Rex Parade; mules pulling the Carnival floats; parades on the streets of the French Quarter; celebrity kings of Bacchus; the origins of the gay Carnival; the Original Illinois Club’s traditional dance, the Chicago Glide; and the ritual of celebrating the season with king cake.
Special moments include: an interview with Mr. and Mrs Erik Johnsen, a former Rex and a former Queen of Rex; rare scenes of Louis Armstrong as King of the Zulu parade in 1949, along with Mardi Gras memories from Janee Mercadel Tucker, the Zulu Queen of 1977; and the colorful story of how Mardi Gras float builder Blaine Kern got his start.
Carnival historians Arthur Hardy, Errol Laborde and Henri Schindler add their own expert insights to MARDI GRAS: THE PASSING PARADE, which also chronicles the 1979 New Orleans police strike that prompted the cancellation of many parades.
Among the notable New Orleanians featured in this one-hour program are WWL-TV editorialist Phil Johnson, Krewe of Bacchus Captain Owen “Pip” Brennan Jr. and artist George Schmidt.
The show contains rare footage of Carnival, including newsreels and home movies. MARDI GRAS: THE PASSING PARADE is narrated and produced by Peggy Scott Laborde.