Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Carole King, Judith Light, National Pancake Day...and MORE!

My life has been a tapestry of rich and royal hue, an everlasting vision of the ever changing view.

Happy February 9th,
There is a lot to celebrate today!
It is National Bagel Day, Pizza Day, AND National Pancakes Day! I hope your biggest decision is whether to have Chinese to celebrate the year of the Monkey or Pizza or Pancakes!?!?!
It is Carole King and Judith Light's Birthday. Unfortunately, I never have met Carole King. I was lucky enough several years ago to be a workshop with Judith Light at Primary Stages.
These are two very powerful fellow Aquarians that I admire deeply. I truly appreciate the contributions that they have made to our cultural landscape and they are worth celebrating. 
February 9 is the 40th day of the year in the
Gregorian calendar. If you were old enough to follow what was happening on the radio in 1971, you knew Carole King's Tapestry was a big deal.
The career of singer-songwriter Carole King is unparalleled. She is a four-time Grammy Award-winner, a Rock and Roll Hall of Famer, a 2015 Kennedy Center Honoree and in 2013, Carole King became the first woman to be awarded the Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular
To date, more than 400 of her compositions have been recorded by more than 1,000 artists, resulting in 100 hit singles, including songs co-written with Gerry Goffin: “Will You Love Me Tomorrow” (The Shirelles), “Up on the Roof” (The Drifters) and “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman” (Aretha Franklin).

I love Carole King! Around 1995 or 96 I went to her second performance in Blood Brothers at the Music Box. I've seen the show 10 times since I fell in love with it in London while in college. Her performance as Mrs. Johnston was the best out of any of the actresses who have played the role. 
She was amazing. And then four or five days later we were having dinner at Barrymores and who walked in but Carole with another woman. I had to tell her how much of a fan I was; I never approach celebrities but I did this time. She gave me a hug too. Wonderful memory.
-Michael Parker.

Happy birthday to Goodwill Ambassador Mia Farrow! Thank you for all your work for the world’s children. 

On this date in 1971, Apollo 14 returns to Earth after the third manned Moon landing.

The earth literally did move under some people's feet on this date! 

The 1971 San Fernando earthquake (also known as the Sylmar earthquake) occurred in the early morning of February 9 in the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains in southern California. The unanticipated thrust earthquake had a moment magnitude of 6.5 or 6.7 (as determined by several independent institutions) and had a maximum Mercalli intensity of XI (Extreme). The event was one in a series that affected the Los Angeles area in the late 20th century, and a study of the Sierra Madre Fault during that time indicated that more substantial thrust earthquakes had occurred near the Transverse Ranges in the past. Damage was locally severe in the northern San Fernando
Today is also Kathryn Grayson's Birthday. (left) Seen here with Ava Gardner in one of my favorite films, the 1951 version of Show Boat.
Damage was locally severe in the northern
San Fernando Valley, and surface faulting was extensive
Today is also the birthday of Roger Mudd
to the south of the epicenter in the mountains, as well as urban settings along city streets and neighborhoods. Uplift and other effects affected private homes and businesses.

It seemed from summer 1965 until 1971 it was a chaotic time in Southern California. There were the Watts Riots, the assassination of Robert F. Kennedy at The Ambassador Hotel, Charles Manson, the Chicano Moratorium in East Los Angeles, the ongoing destruction of the original Bunker Hill, the Sunset Strip
curfew riots, George Putnam not sure if he wants to work at KTLA or KTTV, massive brush fires, and of course, seemingly to top it all off, the Earth shaking below everyone's feet.
On this day in 1971, pitcher Leroy “Satchel” Paige becomes the first Negro League veteran to be nominated for the Baseball Hall of Fame. In August of that year, Paige, a pitching legend known for his fastball, showmanship and the longevity of his playing career, which spanned five decades, was inducted. Joe DiMaggio once called Paige “the best and fastest pitcher I’ve ever faced.”

Celebrating Anita Gillette
Anita Gillette and Penny Fuller in Sin Twisters, Too! Order your tickets TODAY!

On Saturday afternoon, Anita Gillette will be leading an all star cast in celebration of Peter Filichia's great book, The Great Parade: The Astonishing Never to be Forgotten Broadway Season of 1963/64. (See my blog from yesterday). As if that wasn't enough, she is currently in rehearsals with her sin twister, Penny Fuller, for their upcoming show at Feinstein's 54 Below on February 24th. I hope you will join me for this! Anita Gillette was one of Broadway's go-to ingenues in the 1960s, even if the roles were often in musicals that audiences themselves weren't inclined to go to. But even a notorious flop like Kelly is good for an anecdote as Gillette travels a long stage and screen career in her return to Feinstein's 54 Below on February 24th with Penny Fuller in Sin Twisters, Too!

In Entertainment News 
Samuel French, representing the wishes of the Harold Pinter estate, placed a restriction on all press reviews for The Roomwhich debuted Feb. 4 and is scheduled to run through Feb. 14 at LA’s Redcat. The reason cited for the ban was that the company had failed to alert the licensing group about the L.A. production prior to announcing it to the press. 
In the wake of the announced restrictions, The American Theatre Critics Association released a statement saying it would not recognize the “right of any group, including the licensing company, author or estate, to restrict coverage of a public event.” The organization maintained that arts criticism is journalism; therefore, reviewing the public event would be at the discretion of writers and their editors.  As a result, some reviews were published.

John Seabrooke NewYorker.com 2/08/16

For many songwriters, the wake-up call comes when they have their first streaming hit. For Michelle Lewis, an indie-rock singer-songwriter who now writes primarily for other artists, it was the song “Wings,” which she co-wrote for the British girl group Little Mix. Lewis and her writing partner, Kay Hanley, the former lead singer of the band Letters to Cleo, had been busy working on a Disney show (children’s TV relies heavily on alt-rock music), and at first she didn’t realize how popular the song had become. (Read MORE)

Thank you to all of the artists mentioned in this blog for the gifts you have given to the world and continue to give! 

Laughter is much more important than applause. Applause is almost a duty. Laughter is a reward.
-Carol Channing

With grateful XOXOXs ,


Check out my site celebrating the legacy of Jerry Herman's Hello, Dolly!


Please do what YOU can to be more aware that words and actions DO HURT...but they can also heal and help!   

Happy Birthday, Carmen Miranda!

Here's to an INCREDIBLE tomorrow for ALL...with NO challenges!
Please leave a comment and share on Twitter and Facebook

Happy Birthday, Fred Allen!

Keeping Entertainment LIVE!

Richard Skipper, Richard@RichardSkipper.com

Happy birthday to Kathryn Grayson, born in 1922! Ava Gardner and she were both Tar Heels. Can you name Kathryn's city?
Sarah Rice, Broadway's original Johanna of Sweeney Todd, will sing a Valentine's Day concert of songs from the operetta, classical and musical theatre repertoire, with Paul Jackel, in upstate New York, Feb. 14. - See more at: http://www.playbill.com/news/article/kiss-me-sweeney-todds-sarah-rice-sings-of-love-with-paul-jackel-feb.-14-111546#sthash.bYCP2Q2p.dpuf

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