Friday, March 9, 2012

Shelly Goldstein!

Shelly Goldstein

"And in the end the love you take is equal to the love you make." - Lennon-McCartney 

Happy Friday!

This has been the most amazing week. If you've been following my blogs, you know! Monday night, going to the premier of Noel and Company's Design For Living starring Keith Merrill with Mary Ellen Ashley, going to The Persian Room Gala on Tuesday night, The book signing event on Wednesday night, Leslie Uggams last night, and today I'm writing about a true renaissance woman. I don't think there is anything that Shelly Goldstein cannot do. I just wished she was on the east coast! 

Living in Chicago, her parents took her to the touring companies of every show that came to town. 
She was fortunate, they started her very early. Shelly's Mom also fed her every Broadway album in her collection. She vividly remembers listening to FUNNY GIRL with her mom who did a wicked impression of Barbra/Fanny's singing and Yiddish-isms. They sang along to everything from PETER PAN with Mary Martin to MAME, FIDDLER ON THE ROOF, OLIVER and, of course, GYPSY

Those musicals she sang along to with her Mother remain her favorites to this day.

The experience that changed Shelly's life forever was seeing her first musical actually on Broadway, with a school group. It was PIPPIN. She doesn't think she exhaled for the entire show. Shelly fell madly in love with Bob Fosse and their entire group waited by the stage door to get glimpses of John Rubenstein and Ben Vereen.  While they were waiting, an important man rushed by the stage door. Her friend, Andrea, ran up to him crying, "Mr. Fosse! Mr. Fosse!" He stopped, as if he'd been slapped. He looked at all our tiny little faces, glared at Andrea: "The name is PRINCE. Mr. Prince"...and strode off. Ooops!

Who is your favorite entertainer, and why?  
That's an impossible question to answer. It's like which organ in your body is the single most important. Lots of Groovy Girls are my soul and inspiration: Barbra, Judy, Dusty, Liza, Cass, Carole, Aretha. I love them because they fused talent, passion, humor and style. I love watching Emma Thompson bring a character to life. Lily Tomlin onstage is a masterclass in not just humor, but humanity. Woody Allen and Mel Brooks taught me so much and brought so much joy to my life. If I could just hold an envelope bag with the style of Roz Russell I'd be ecstatic. Or cast a glance with the intensity of Miss Hepburn. On the male side, Colbert is a delight because of his wit, intelligence and absolute commitment to his character. He's as vital and eternal as Jonathan Swift and Mark Twain. Roger Daltrey embodies Rock and Roll for me. I've been madly in love with him my entire life. Sidney Poitier fascinates me onscreen. And my life wouldn't have been worth living without John, Paul, George and Ringo.
What have you learned about making your relationships in the industry more solid and resourceful? Treat people with respect and give 200% to the job. Be the person they want to hire again.

Your thoughts on Arts in Education  
 It's everything. Absolutely everything. I've written a big fund-raising gala for the past 3 years for a wonderful organization in LA called Inner-City Arts. They do amazing work with children in L.A. whose schools barely have walls, let alone theatre, music or drawing.
 Studying their programs I've seen the stats which prove again and again that students exposed to the Arts do significantly better in Reading comprehension, vocabulary, math, science and, most importantly, critical thinking. Understanding the question, not merely reciting the answer.
  Arts education -- writing, drawing, acting, dancing, poetry, drawing, design -- is vital to every child's development. A child must know there is more to life than rigid fact.   Imagination, the slightly skewed vision is what brings us John Lennon and Stephen Sondheim and Steve Jobs. "Where there is no vision, the people perish." We're seeing that play out right now. That must be reversed.
Have you ever felt like you were born in the wrong era? What other period of time do you relate to and why? 
My Groovy Girls show is all about my desire to have been a part of that fantastic era - roughly 1964-1972. Carnaby Street. Broadway. Laurel Canyon. Lincoln Park.  From "She Loves You" to PIPPIN. The style, the theatre, the music, the FASHION -- but also the optimism. Our national optimism got kicked in the gut around Watergate and we've never fully recovered.
Sid Caesar
I have one other dream - to have been in the writers room at CAESAR'S HOUR (Not "Your Show of Shows" because Larry Gelbart didn't work on that one) alongside Gelbart, Mel Brooks, Neil Simon, Carl Reiner, young Woody. These guys are my comedy gods. I was good friends with Larry and he once told me, "You'd have fit in fine in 'the room'". I cherish that.

Your thoughts on Carol Channing (All my blogs focus on Carol Channing’s Foundation For The Arts) 
Last year I was lucky enough to meet Miss Channing and her late husband, Harry. He and I talked about their foundation. God Bless them for their work. I've had the good fortune to see Miss Channing play Dolly twice. The performances were 25 years apart and she was brilliant in both of them. That says it all. Her talent, her humor, her fortitude...The woman is fantastic!

I’m campaigning for Carol Channing to receive the 2012 Kennedy Center Honor in 2012. If you agree that she should receive this honor, can you say why you think this should happen (See below on how YOU can help!) Carol Channing absolutely deserves the Kennedy Center Honor. She is an icon who embodies the American Dream. Her work ethic is unmatched. Her entire life has been dedicated to bringing joy to millions, and enriching education for children. She is still going strong in her 90s and is an absolute inspiration to all Americans. Why she hasn't yet received the honor is a mystery. 
Most recent appearance  
Sang the other night at Jim Caruso's CAST PARTY at Hollywood new "Coterie" room, which singer Julie Garnye has brilliantly brought to town.

Next appearance  
Will be performing in London, L.A. and Chicago. Announcement to come, soon!

What is your biggest success in Show Business? 
Haven't gotten there yet.  As an actor, the biggest high was working alongside Sir Derek Jacobi in THE RIDDLE. As a writer, working with Steve Martin was as good as it gets.

What was your lowest low and how did you surpass that?
When my Mother died. Still working on it. My husband makes every day more positive and possible.

What one change would you like to see in today’s industry? 
Less sexism onscreen. Less sexism behind the scenes. (ESPECIALLY IN COMEDY) Less agism. A 10 year ban on any sort of re-make of an old idea on TV, screen or stage musical -- and an embrace of new, original ideas. 
Are you happy at the point you are right now in your career?  
Happy, grateful, eager to do much, much more.

Do you feel you have achieved what you set out to do? 
I juggle lots of plates. I've done just about everything in show biz except literally juggle plates. I still have lots more to do.

What do you do to remain positive when life's hiccups get you down?  
Think what my Mother would do then loudly sing a showtune or appropriate 60s song.

How on earth do you reach theatregoers now that newspapers are obsolete and there are so many channels on TV you can’t pick the right ones to advertise on and with the web being so hit and miss. 
Plugging a show is much harder work than doing a show. Facebook, Twitter, e-mail, phone calls, plastering neighborhoods and hotels with flyers, go to open mics, talk to anyone who'll listen.

A genie pops out of the lamp, he grants you three wishes. What are those wishes? 
1) Cancer disappears  
2) Marriage Equality becomes legal  
3) I get to bring my Mama back for one day and she sits front row center as I debut at the Hollywood Bowl doing an evening of songs from the Groovy Era, joined by my special guests: The Beatles, Dusty Springfield, Judy and Liza who crown me, "The New Belter!"
How did you get into this business? 
I was born. 

What is your favorite song? 
"Someone to Watch Over Me". I sang it to my husband at our wedding. 

What is the last stage show you saw.  Local or professional.   
Coco Peru's spectacular, "There Comes a Time".

What do you do to prepare for your performances? 

When do you know it’s time for a Shelly Goldstein show? 
When I wake up.
Do you make a living at this or do you have a survival job?  Other than one Xmas season selling musical toothbrushes at Bullocks as an adult, I have always made my living in the entertainment industry as a writer or performer.
What is your favorite compliment?
"We want you back."


with George Marcy and Carol Lawrence
Please join me Monday night with several of the original cast members of Hello, Dolly! (various productions)
$30.00 tickets sold out and $50.00 tickets going fast for DO40 CARES: It's Not Where You Start, March 12th with Host Carol Lawrence and Guest Star Chita Rivera and the merry murderesses from the original CHICAGO! $100 seats are still available! Call telecharge now! 212-239-6200 At the Ailey Citigroup Theater/The Joan Weill Center for Dance, 405 West 55th St., NYC. For more information, call the DO40 Hotline, 212-330-7016 or visit our website,

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

Tomorrow's blog will be... Remembering Robert Sherman

Thank you, to all the mentioned in this blog!

  Here's to an INCREDIBLE tomorrow for ALL...with NO challenges!

Richard Skipper,
This Blog is dedicated to ALL ARTISTS: Past, present and future and the gifts they give to the world!


  1. Thanks for this. Shelly Goldstein is uniquely gifted, funny as heck and a lovely person. Each performance leaves her audience on its feet cheering.

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