Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Remembering Patty Duke, Happy Birthday Cynthia Crane, Celebrating Pat Cooper...and MORE!

Patty Duke in a wardrobe test for Valley of the Dolls (my favorite Patty Duke film)
He who tooteth not his own horn, the same shall not be tooted. 
-Damon Runyan

Happy Tuesday, March 29th, 2016!
March 29 is the 89th day of the year. There are 277 days remaining until the end of the year.
Sad news just came in: Patty Duke has passed on.  
Patty Duke’s talent may have felt like a miraculous gift, but it did not come free.
She won an Oscar for The Miracle Worker. She also starred in The Patty Duke Show in the 1960s in which she took the roles of "identical" teenage cousins. READ MORE. She was 69.She died of sepsis from a ruptured intestine, according to a statement from Mitchell K. Stubbs and Associates, the agency that represented her.
Anne Bancroft, left, and Duke on stage in the Broadway play The Miracle Worker in October 1959. Bancroft played the role of Anne Sullivan, who teaches the blind and deaf Helen Keller, played by Duke, to communicate.
As well as a best supporting Oscar, Duke won an Emmy in 1980 for playing Helen Keller's teacher in a TV movie.
I am a huge fan of Patty Duke's. I regret that I never met or interviewed her. My favorite film of hers, believe it or not, is Valley of the Dolls. "This morning, our beloved wife, mother, grandmother, matriarch and the exquisite artist, humanitarian, and champion for mental health, Anna PATTY DUKE Pearce, closed her eyes, quieted her pain and ascended to a beautiful place," her family said in a statement posted by her son actor Sean Astin. "We celebrate the infinite love and compassion she shared through her work and throughout her life."
Patty Duke as Patty Lane on The Patty Duke Show, 1965
CLICK HERE for more info. Rest in Peace, Patty. You are already missed.
Check out this video on YouTube:
This is my friend Don Berger delivering Patty Duke to the San Francisco Castro Theatre.
Richard White sent me this:
New York City, 1961-

I was 9 years old and was in New York City with my mother as my chaperone in rehearsal for Sail Away where I played one of the annoying kids on the cruise ship Carolonia who were giving ship’s activities director, Mimi Paragon (Elaine Stritch) a hard time in “The Little One’s ABC’s”. I had a night off and we managed to get tickets for The Miracle Worker with Patty Duke and Anne Bancroft which was at the Playhouse Theater.  I remember sitting there, mesmerized watching Patty on stage. We met briefly after the performance at the stage door, a 9 year old actor and a 13 year old actress.


1990 –
My cousin, Russell “Rusty” Hamer, former child star of Make Room For Daddy committed suicide and Paul Petersen, himself a child TV star from The Donna Reed Show, started A Minor Consideration to try and reach out and help former child performers who were having issues dealing with adulthood.  I connected with the group and through it re-connected with Anna (Patty’s real name). She told me about seeing me in Sail Away after we opened and about seeing me in Oliver! in 1963, having a crush on Davy Jones, who was playing The Artful Dodger (Davy, as almost everyone knows, went on to be one of TV’s The Monkees).  I was finishing up my 27 year Army career and she had married Michael Pearce who had been an Army sergeant when they met, so even though Michael had finished his service, she still called herself "an Army wife". We kept in touch with letters and e-mails and would occasionally cross paths. She was always very kind, nice, and had quite a sense of humor.
When my fiancee died in an accident in January of 2015, Anna was one of the first to reach out to me and help me get through that emotionally devastating time.
The last time I heard from her directly was in February 2016 and, even though she was not well, almost everything in her e-mail was “how are you doing?” and concern about me.
That’s the Anna I will always remember, giving freely of herself and asking little in return.


Thank you, Richard White

In other news today, the court tipped in Janice Dickinson's favor on Tuesday when a judge ruled her defamation case against Bill Cosby can proceed.

On this date in the year of my birth, 1961 – The Twenty-third Amendment to the United States Constitution is ratified, allowing residents of Washington, D.C., to vote in presidential elections.
with my dear friend Cynthia Crane! Happy Birthday!!
As I sat down to begin my blog this morning, Frank Sinatra was singing It Was a Very Good Year. That was followed by Barbra Streisand singing I Believe.  Both of those songs were written by my dear late friend, Ervin Drake. How appropriate that I would hear his VOICE so early today. Tonight in New York at BB King's will be the 30th Annual MAC (Manhattan Association of Cabarets and Clubs) Awards. At an earlier time, Ervin and his wonderful wife Edith both would have been there dressed to the nines and celebrating all in attendance.
I miss them both so much. His birthday is coming up on Saturday. I will do a celebration of him here in my blog.
They contributed so much to my career and life and they forever will live in my hearts.
Cynthia Crane: Singer, Actress, Recording Artist, Wife to Ted Story, Mother, Grandmother to a 5th generation Native New Yorker, Environmentalist, ...
I wish my DEAR FRIEND Cynthia Crane a happy birthday. Cynthia is one of those friends that I, for the life of me, cannot remember when, where, and how we met. It feels like she has always been a friend and has always been there...although she has not. We served on the MAC Awards together and as we both have endured personal trials in our personal lives over the past few years, we have each lent our hearts       and ears to each other. I have interviewed Cynthia in previous blogs but I reached out once again for a mini interview. Today, I celebrate Cynthia Crane!
Some of the finest ladies in Cabaret!! — with Cynthia Stanley Crane, Joanne Camilleri-Furshpan, Pamela Singer and Maryann Lopinto. (Taken at our home this past Christmas)

Please send me a brief message about what this time in your life means to you
TURNING 80, OLDER THAN BOTH MY PARENTS, FEELS LOTS DIFFERENT THAN I THOUGHT IT WOULD.  IT FEELS LIKE THESE ADDITIONAL YEARS ARE A GIFT.  I’M TRYING TO FIND SOME WAY TO JUSTIFY THE GIFT.  THE HARDEST PART IS THE STATE OF THE WORLD TODAY, AGAIN SO DIFFERENT THAN MY EXPECTATIONS, THAT AND LOSING SO MANY OF THOSE WHO ARE DEAR TO ME..

What is your Morning Motivation?


KT Sullivan, Cynthia, Betty Gardner Gonzalez, Jeff Harnar
CURIOSITY AND THE NEW YORK TIMES

How do you approach social media marketing?
I LOVE SOCIAL MEDIA.  IT KEEPS ME UP TO DATE ON THE LIVES OF SO MANY PEOPLE I KNOW AND SOME, I DON’T.  AS FAR AS THE MARKETING PART, SOCIAL MEDIA GIVES ME THE MEANS TO TOOT MY OWN HORN, AND AS WE ALL KNOW, HE WHO TOOTETH NOT HIS OWN HORN, HIS HORN SHALL NOT BE TOOTETH-ED

It’s Twitter’s 10th birthday. So how do you feel about it now – love it or hate it?
SOMEHOW, I DON’T USE TWITTER MUCH, USUALLY TO PASS ON SOMETHING POLITICAL.  IT’S  FACEBOOK THAT I LOVE.  INSTAGRAM I USE TO COMMUNICATE WITH MY GRANDSONS.

What do you still want that you don't have now?
Cynthia and some of the greatest artists in cabaret
 

RIGHT NOW I STILL WANT TO DO ANOTHER SHOW.  IT’S 6 YEARS SINCE I LAST WROTE A SHOW (“JOHN DENVER, BERNIE MADOFF & ME”) & I’M FIGHTING WRITER’S BLOCK.

What is your favorite song?
I’M VERY FICKLE.  MY FAVORITE SONG IS MY EAR WORM OF THE MOMENT.  CURRENTLY I AM REVELING IN GERSHWIN’S “ISN’T IT A PITY"

Batman or Superman?
Lee Pfeiffer with Ted Story (Cynthia's husband) and Cynthia

WONDER WOMAN

What lesson are you learning in life right now??
THAT PEOPLE ARE STILL THE MOST INTERESTING GAME IN TOWN.

How do you stay focused on what matters most?
MEDITATION HELPS.  IT’S A LIFETIME PROJECT AS I TEND TO DABBLE AND LOSE FOCUS.          
    Happy Birthday, Cynthia! Please follow Cynthia on Facebook!


Other Notable Birthdays Today!
1918 – Pearl Bailey, American actress and singer (d. 1990)
Today is also the birthday of Arthur O'Connell (29 March 1908 Manhattan, New York – 18 May 1981 Woodland Hills, California). He appeared in films starting (with a small role in Citizen Kane) in 1941 and television programs (mostly guest appearances). Among his screen appearances were Picnic, Anatomy of a Murder, and as the watch-maker who hides Jews during World War II in Corrie ten Boom's The Hiding Place.

Happy Birthday, Warner Baxter! Great Oscar winning actor. "You're going out there a youngster, but you're coming back a star coming back a star" 42nd Street.
1919 – Eileen Heckart, American actress (d. 2001)
March 29, 1937 Billy Carter born; brother of US President Jimmy Carter and purveyor of Billy Beer.
Marc Klaw

 Happy Birthday to photographer/filmmaker Bruce Weber (March 29, 1946), author of “Bruce Weber” (1991) et al.
On this day in 1950 Bud Cort of the film Harold and Maude fame was born.
Theatre manager Marc Klaw born (1848)

Greystoke: The Legend of Tarzan, Lord of the Apes
Christopher Lambert may be best known for his role as Connor MacLeod — "The Highlander" — in the movie and subsequent movie franchise series of the same name. He is also known for his roles as Tarzan in Greystoke: The Legend of Tarzan, Lord of the Apes and as the thunder god Raiden in the first movie adaptation of the video game Mortal Kombat.

Happy birthday Amy Sedaris! You are the greatest.
Actor/singer Joseph Cawthorn born (1867)
On 3/29/1878, Albert Von Tilzer was born in Indianapolis. He wrote the famous song Take Me Out to the Ballgame.
Howard Lindsay (b. 3/29/1889) played the title character in "Life with Father," 1939.
Rodgers and Hammerstein's The King & I opened on Broadway (1951).
It's a Bird, It's a Plane, It's Superman opened on Broadway (1966).
 Look to the Lilies starring Shirley Booth opened on Broadway (1970)
Kander and Ebb's Woman of the Year opened on Broadway (1981).
Jerry Lewis with Pat Cooper (photo courtesy: Pat Cooper and Steve Garrin)
Today, I also celebrate Pat Cooper!
Pat Cooper (born Pasquale Caputo is an American actor and comedian.
Cooper started performing in the 1950s, originally for primarily Italian-American audiences.He has performed at celebrity roasts at the New York Friars Club which he also played in an episode of Seinfeld titled "The Friar's Club" and was also a frequent guest on many radio shows, most notably The Howard Stern Show, Imus in the Morning and Opie and Anthony. He played fictional mobster Salvatore Analyze This and in the film Analyze That, as well as playing lawyer, John Bruno in the 2003 film This Thing of Ours.
Judy Garland with Pat Cooper (photo courtesy: Pat Cooper and Steve Garrin)
Masiello in the film
Here is my mini interview with Pat (Thank you, Steve Garrin!)

What does your book and the upcoming reading of the one man show (of your autobiography), "How Dare You Say How Dare Me", in the fall mean to you:
I never in my life would think that I would write a book with Steve Garrin and Rich Herschlag, and it happened and when I first saw the (book) cover, we were thrown a book party by the Friar's Club, I was so proud of myself, but I didn't get all taken away, because if I did, I wouldn't be the same guy, I would be an egomaniac, and I'm not that yet.  I'm happy that there's an interest, in doing the one man show, and that it's going to happen.
Robert De Niro with Pat and Pat's late wife Patti Del Prince Cooper. She was a singer and opened for Pat when he played Vegas. (photo courtesy: Pat Cooper and Steve Garrin)
We have a couple of months to get it ready. I'd like to direct the talent who is selected to play me, because who knows better how to play Pat Cooper, than Pat Cooper.

What is your Monday Morning Motivation?
​I Pray that I get to Tuesday, and then Tuesday motivation is to get to Wednesday because when you get to a certain age, I'm 87, you gotta be a realist.   ​

The greatest thing I've ever said in my life  is, "It's Over" ​, and when I said it's

Steve Garrin and Rich Herschlag with Pat Cooper (photo courtesy: Pat Cooper and Steve Garrin)
over I meant it's over​​. I got friends of mine, it's been over 20 years ago for them, and they still don't get it. "Being over" ​is good if you had something (a career) to be over with.​

(photo courtesy: Pat Cooper and Steve Garrin)
Your thoughts on the Hulk Hogan verdict?
​First of all, It's the most stupid, dumbest thing that people are interested in this with the world blowing up, and we're going to worry about Hulk Hogan. Who cares about Hulk Hogan? Now due to the video, we all know that Hulk Hogan has a small penis, which nobody cares about. He got the best built body in probably one in a billion, and he has no penis, so what happens, god punished him, great body small penis.


It’s Twitter’s 10th birthday. So how do you feel about it now – love it or hate it?
​Only birds tweeted when I was young.​
​  I don't tweet.​

What do you still want that you don't have now?
​I'd like to have someone in my life that I can share my remaining days with,  a lady, not for sex, but someone I'd really like to be with and hang out with for companionship. I haven't found anyone after I lost my wife.

Get Millennials To Vote In 5 Words
​Get out and vote now!! Pay your country back for giving you​
the freedom to be you.​

What Wisdom would you like to offer my readers today?
​Wisdom, enjoy every day 'cause there may not be a tomorrow, but there were a lot of yesterdays if you were fortunate. ​

Do you consider yourself competitive?
Oh yeah. When you're in show business or anything that's difficult and you don't give up. You need to mentally psych yourself up and hone you're craft until you're the best at what you do.
Thank you Pat Cooper AND Steve Garrin! 

In Other Entertainment News 
Just wanted to let you know the schedule for this year's Judy Garland Wizard of Oz Festival. For those who can't attend, I thought you might be interested to see what is going on! Click HERE
Courtesy Michelle Russell.

In just the past few weeks, Karen Mason has performed in Florida, Puerto Rico, The Virgin Islands, and St. Lucia. And next up, she'll once again be traveling to a great island (perhaps one of the best): Long Island!  Click HERE for more info.

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

With grateful XOXOXs ,

 


Check out my site celebrating the legacy of Dolly Gallagher Levi
Happy Birthday, Pearl Bailey. Read my Interview with Morgan Freeman about his experiences in Dolly! with Pearl Bailey
NO COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT INTENDED.  FOR ENTERTAINMENT PURPOSES ONLY!


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

Here's to an INCREDIBLE tomorrow for ALL...with NO challenges!
Richard Skipper Celebrates May 25th  AND Anna Bergman (and OTHERS!) at The Triad in NYC 8PM Show... Reservations a MUST! You Never Know Who You Might See There!
Order your Tickets HERE
Please leave a comment and share on Twitter and Facebook


Bridging the Past with the Present: GO SEE A LIVE SHOW TONIGHT!
 
TILL TOMORROW...HERE'S TO AN ARTS FILLED DAY


Richard Skipper, Richard@RichardSkipper.com


 PLEASE CELEBRATE WITH US April 7th in NYC


Don't Tell Mama Presents...

Wendy Scherl returns in What Do You Do All Day?  Directed by the incredible Helen Baldasarre with great musical direction by Matthew Martin Ward. Wendy is an amazing vocalist with a rangy and rich sound.
“This is someone to watch!” Go see her, you can thank me later.
- Sue Matsuki   In “What Do You Do All Day”, Wendy Scherl shares anecdotes and song about the numerous hats she wears every single day as a wife, a mother of two boys and two dogs, a short order cook, a daughter, a house manager, a chauffeur and Cabaret Singer! Her show is both touching and real, theatrical and funny!
This show WILL sell out! So reserve today and be a part of his star studded audience!
You will truly be amazed by what this full-time executive director of a family of four accomplishes every day!
Wendy will wow you with both her choice of material and her talent!
After graduating from Northwestern University with a BA in Theatre, Wendy performed in numerous regional theatre productions around the country, including some of her favorite productions: Hair (Theofficial 20th Anniversary Production in Chicago), Grease (numerous roles), Annie (Grace), The Pajama Game (Babe), and Godspell.  
$20.00 Cover/Two Drink Minimum Cash Only Reserve at 212-757-0788 (after 4PM or through me)

$5.00 OFF COVER OF ALL MAC MEMBERS
Richard Skipper Celebrates is the publicist for Wendy Scherl and What Do You Do All Day? at NYC's Don't Tell Mama. For press reservations, interview requests, or more information, contact Richard Skipper at Richard@RichardSkipper.com or 845-365-0720
 





1 comment:

  1. As always with Richard's blogs, such a loving and carefully crafted tribute. I am truly honored.

    ReplyDelete