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Any Questions #204

Load up the van for WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel.

Last week's challenge
Start with the name of orchestral composition “La Mer” composer Claude Debussy. Change one letter to an H and rearrange the letters and you can spell a three-word phrase for something that might keep you from enjoying the weekend. What is the phrase?
Answer: Change one D to an H and you can spell A BUSY SCHEDULE.

On-air questions
: On July 24, 1862, President Martin van Buren died at the age of 79 in Kinderhook, New York (which was also his birthplace). Like much of the town of Kinderhook at the time, the van Burens spoke Dutch at home, and as a result, van Buren is the only U.S. president who spoke English as a second language. To commemorate our eighth president, this week our quiz is about famous people with "van" in their name.
1. Making her debut on March 2, 1952, what comic strip character pulls a football away from another character for the first time eight months later, because she's afraid his shoes will get her new football dirty?
2. What entertainer won a 1961 Tony for his role in the musical Bye Bye Birdie, shared a 1964 Grammy Award for his performance on the soundtrack to Mary Poppins, and won multiple Emmy awards for his work on his eponymous 1960's sitcom?
3. Chris van Allsburg, an illustrator and children's author, has twice won the Caldecott Medal (awarded to the best illustrated children's book of the year). Both of those award-winning books were adapted into successful feature films: one stars Tom Hanks as the conductor of a train heading to the North Pole, and the other stars Robin Williams as the father of two children who play a mysterious board game. What are the titles of the two books?
4. Between 1979 and 1993, actress Joan Van Ark played Valene Ewing on the TV show Knots Landing. Her character was originally a one-time guest appearance, later increased to eight episodes, on what long-running drama, of which Knots Landing was a spinoff?
5. What rock guitarist has a middle name that's the Dutch version of "Ludwig" – after composer Ludwig van Beethoven – and continued this tradition by naming his son Wolfgang, after composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart?

Extra credit
1. Although the tale of Rip Van Winkle is set in New York's Catskill Mountains, what author admitted, "When I wrote the story, I had never been on the Catskills."?
2. Director Gus van Sant, who won Best Director Oscars for 1997's Good Will Hunting and 2008's Milk, was also the recipient of a Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Director for his 1998 remake of what classic film?

This week's challenge
Start with the name VAN BUREN. Change one letter to an O and you can spell two four-letter words that each name something a writer is very familiar with. What are they?

On-air questions

1. Lucy van Pelt
2. Dick Van Dyke
3. The Polar Express, Jumanji
4. Dallas
5. Eddie Van Halen

Extra credit
1. Washington Irving
2. Psycho

A lifelong resident of the Capital Region, Ian joined WAMC in late 2008 and became news director in 2013. He began working on Morning Edition and has produced The Capitol Connection, Congressional Corner, and several other WAMC programs. Ian can also be heard as the host of the WAMC News Podcast and on The Roundtable and various newscasts. Ian holds a BA in English and journalism and an MA in English, both from the University at Albany, where he has taught journalism since 2013.
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