Thursday, February 18, 2016

Anna Maria Alberghetti Who? (A Ted Baxter Knock Knock)


 Anna Maria Alberghetti,
born in Pesaro, Italy in 1936, to a musical family
(concertmaster father, pianist mother).
At the age of 6, Anna was already singing with symphony orchestras.
As WWII approached, the family came to America,
where Anna had her Carnegie Hall debut at age 14.
(The above shot looks like it was taken at the Trevi Fountain;
let's pretend it was.)

 When David Merrick set out to cast Carnival,
he initially hoped that Leslie Caron would star,
repeating her "turn" in Lili, (upon which the show was based).
He saw it as a dancing role.
Well, forget that, David.
Anna Maria was signed once he heard her cabaret act;
she was 24 (above with strange Carnival puppets).
 She shared the stage with Jerry Orbach,
also making his Broadway debut.
Gower Champion directed,
Bob Merrill wrote the words and music...
an instant hit,
with Anna winning a Tony (1961).
(*Actually it was a "shared" Tony: 
Anna supposedly tied with Diahann Carroll in No Strings)

 Post-Carnival:
Anna starred with Jerry Lewis in "Cinderfella,"
Dean Martin and Dewey Martin in "Ten Thousand Bedrooms,"
and on Broadway...Kismet, Fanny, The Fantasticks.

 She became the "queen" of the Ed Sullivan Show
with 53 appearances. 
A ton of TV shows, western films,
and her cabaret act...which she returned to later in life.

 Had to include this photo...
with Ethel and David Merrick.
David became his usual tyrannical self
when Anna had to be hospitalized during Carnival's run;
he made her take a lie detector test to "verify her illness."
So this photo is NOT from that time.
 Still gorgeous at the age of 79,
Anna now lives in California
(because she can!).




2 comments:

  1. Anna Maria Alberghetti. I remember that name being mentioned, in television ads perhaps? I had no real recollection of her. So great to find out she was such a talented singer, and very lovely.

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  2. A great voice, and sounds like she is still going strong! :)

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