Thursday, May 4, 2017

Elaine: Chapter 1 (Chapter 2 next week, folks!)

Elaine Stritch, circa 1946-48,
when she was debuting on Broadway 
in Loco and Angel In The Wings.
She was raised in a tony part of Detroit,
with a Goodrich Tire CEO for a dad, and plenty of Catholic school.
She took the train to NYC at age 17,
to live in a "convent" and attend The New School's
Dramatic Workshop.
Classmates: Marlon Brando, Bea Arthur, Tony Curtis, Rod Steiger.

First musical, Angel In The Wings...
and her song (which was NOT cut in Philadelphia),
By 1952, she was understudying Ethel Merman
in Call Me Madam,
and simultaneously performing "Zip" 
in Rodgers and Hart's revival of Pal Joey.
"And you wonder why I drank!"

1956: Bus Stop on Broadway.
Other goodies from that time period:
Private Lives, Wonderful Town, No, No, Nanette,
and The King And I.

Goldilocks, a bagel from 1962...
but she got the lead and that led to...

Noel Coward's Sail Away,
in which she played Mimi Paragon,
cruise-Meister (Mistress?), nonpareil.

She played the first Trixie Norton (far left, above)
in the premiere edition of "The Honeymooners."
By epi 2, they'd picked more homey Joyce Randolph.
(Also above, Pert Kelton, Jackie and Art.)

In a Mame revival,
playing Vera Charles to Janet Blair's Mame.

With kindred spirit,
Noel Coward.
Note how the pearls have grown!

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