Thoughts That Transcend Time

Published on Sunday, May 17, 2009 in , , , ,

Sir Alan Bates reciting William Ernest Henley's 'Invictus'If it's true that many classic poems are treasures, then I've just discovered an entire treasure trove about which I formerly knew nothing!

Back in 1996 and 1997, UBS made an entire series of ads that, due to their opening text, became known as the Thoughts That Transcend Time series.

The ad series was the idea of marketing guru Neil French, who gives a behind-the-scenes look at this series on his site.

The concept was simple: Notable actors would recite classic poetry, with the ultimate goal of not only being entertaining and educational, but to give a timeless image to UBS and it's reputation for security and longevity, as well.

The poems featured were from William Ernest Henley, Frost, Shakespeare, Alfred, Lord Tennyson, R. L. Sharpe, Matthew Arnold, Ella Wheeler-Wilcox, Edgar Albert Guest, Shelley, Arthur Hugh Clough, Longfellow, Lao Tzu, Wang Zihuan, Walter D. Wintle, Yeats and Kipling. The actors who recited these works were Sir Alan Bates, Sir John Gielgud, Maggie Smith, Ben Kingsley, Paul Scofield, Ying Ruocheng and Harvey Keitel.

If you're trying to memorize poetry, this is a wonderful series in which to find pieces you may not have considered. Even better, if you're eventually going to perform them, this is a great way to find inspiration for presenting a piece, as well.

Remember some old favorite poems and maybe even discover some new ones by either watching them all below, or by viewing the playlist itself at YouTube. Enjoy!

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6 Response to Thoughts That Transcend Time

5:27 PM

Have just discovered this wonderful series on YouTube. Is it available on DVD?


8:51 PM

Since it's a series of commercials, it's not available on DVD as far as I know.

11:56 AM

If by Rudyard Kipling, appears to be disappeared.

12:03 PM

Sadly, there were copyright problems, and I removed it by request.

You can still see the missing ads at:

4:11 AM

Hello just me again, more of 'your' poems seem to be disappearing!!!

What seems to be the problem? - Please talk to me.

Can you please re-post, on my behalf and save me the job.

Best Wishes,

Terry Giblin

3:11 PM

Sorry, Terry.

As mentioned in my previous comment, there were copyright problems with them, and I removed them by request.

The link I posted shows all the missing ads, however: