Today's Birthdays 3/28

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Broadway Legend
Broadway Legend
Today's Birthdays 3/28#1
Posted: 3/28/08 at 8:06pm
Paul Whiteman 03/28/1890 - Dec 29, 1967 conductor, Bing Crosby got his start w/PW; was the 1st to hire a girl band singer: Mildred Bailey,; premiered "Rhapsody in Blue" w/Gershwin at the piano - George White's Scandals [1922]; Ziegfeld Follies of 1923; film's The King of Jazz; Thanks A Million; Strike Up The Band; Atlantic City; Rhapsody In Blue.

Flora Robson 03/28/1902 - 7/7/1984 performer, made a Dame in 1960 - Ladies in Retirement (Estelle Winwood); Anne of England; The Damask Cheek (Zachary Scott, Celeste Holm); 1948 Macbeth (Julie Harris, Russell Collins, Michael Redgrave, Martin Balsam); Black Chiffon; film's Fire Over England; Wuthering Heights; Sea Hawk; Clash of the Titans

Rudolf Serkin 3/28/1903 - 5/9/1991 father of Peter Serkin; taught at Curtis Institute; concert pianist: “An artist of unusual and impressive talents in possession of a crystalline technique, plenty of power, delicacy, and tone pure and full.”; “A masterly musician ... a scholar of profound art without pedantry, with the loftiest conceptions of beauty, whose every thought and emotion is for the glory of his art.”

Frank Lovejoy 03/28/1914 - Oct 2, 1962 performer - Judgment Day; The Greatest Show on Earth; Woman Bites Dog; orig The Best Man; film's House of Wax, Strategic Air Command; I'll See You In My Dreams; The Sound of Fury; The Hitch-Hiker

Jay Livingston 03/28/1915 - Oct 17, 2001 Lyricist, Composer - Oh Captain!; Let It Ride; Sugar Babies; tv's & film's Academy Award winners were "Buttons and Bows" (from 1948's "The Paleface"), "Mona Lisa" (from 1950's "Captain Cary, U.S.A.") and Doris Day's signature tune, "Que Sera Sera" (from 1956's "The Man Who Knew Too Much", 1956); wrote theme songs for a number of TV series, including "Bonanza," "Please Don't Eat the Daisies," "The Bugs Bunny/Road Runner Hour" and "Mr. Ed."

Dirk Bogarde 3/28/1921 - 5/8/1999 performer - film's The Damned, Death in Venice, The Vision, A Bridge Too Far, Night Flight from Moscow

Freddie Bartholomew 3/28/1924 - 1/23/1992 performer - film's Anna Karenina, Captains Courageous, David Copperfield, Little Lord Fauntleroy

Conchata Ferrell 3/28/1943 performer - off-bway The Sea Horse; Hot L Baltimore; tv's & film's L.A. Law, Hearts Afire, A Peaceable Kingdom, McClain’s Law, Hot L Baltimore, E/R, B.J. and the Bear, The Buccaneers, True Romance, Mystic Pizza, Edward Scissorhands, Deadly Hero; Two and a Half Men

Ken Howard 03/28/1944 performer - Promises, Promises (Jerry Orbach, Jill O'Hara, Graciela Daniele, Donna McKechnie, Baayork Lee); 1776; Child's Play; Seesaw; Little Black Sheep; The Norman Conquests 1, 2 & 3; 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue; Rumors (Christine Baranski, Jessica Walters, Ron Liebman, Andre Gregory); tv's & film's Murder She Wrote; The White Shadow, The Thorn Birds, Country Girl, Oscar

Dianne Wiest 03/28/1948 performer - Frankenstein (David Dukes, John Carradine, Keith Jochim); 1982 Othello (Christopher Plummer, James Earl Jones, Kelsey Grammer); Beyond Therapy; 1993 In the Summer House; 2003 Salome; The Seagull; tv's & film's Academy Award-winning actress: Hannah and Her Sisters [1986]; Bullets over Broadway, Radio Days, Edward Scissorhands, Little Man Tate, Footloose; Law & Order

Reba McEntire 03/28/1955 performer; C&W singer - 1999 Annie Get Your Gun [replacement]; South Pacific @ Carnegie Hall with Stokes; tv's & film's Reba; One Night at McCool's; Tremors


1939 Philip Barry tells The Philadelphia Story at the Shubert Theatre in New York. Katharine Hepburn, Van Heflin, Shirley Booth, and Joseph Cotten star. Robert Edmond Jones designs the sets and lighting, Robert Sinclair stages. It will run a year.

1967 Sherry!, a musical adaptation of the play The Man Who Came to Dinner opens today to dismissive reviews, and it closes 72 performances later. Cut to 2004 when librettist James Lipton, now host of Bravo's "Actors Studio" series, puts together a dream cast of Bernadette Peters, Nathan Lane, Tommy Tune and Mike Myers finally records and releases a studio cast album.

1971 A man's family, mistress, and doctor run All Over their relationships with him as he awaits death. John Gielgud stages this Edward Albee drama. Jessica Tandy and Colleen Dewhurst lead the cast. It will run 42 times at the Martin Beck Theatre in New York.

1985 Two years and a day later, Eugene Jerome returns to the Neil Simon Theatre in the Neil Simon sequel to Brighton Beach Memoirs, Biloxi Blues. Now 1943, six years after the end of Memoirs, Eugene is on his way to boot camp during World War II. Matthew Broderick once again dons the duds of the character, then hand off the role to Jonathan Silverman, who will go on to star in the third part of the trilogy, Broadway Bound.


1941 Novelist and critic Virginia Woolf died in Lewes, England.

1943 Composer Sergei Rachmaninoff died in Beverly Hills, Calif.

1977 - Rocky, Network, All the President’s Men. Titles to remember from the 49th Annual Academy Awards presentation, held this day at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in Los Angeles. Hosted by a cast of, uh, four (Warren Beatty, Ellen Burstyn, Jane Fonda, and Richard Pryor), Rocky collected Oscars for Best Picture (Irwin Winkler, Robert Chartoff, producers); Best Director (John G. Avildsen); and Film Editing (Scott Conrad, Richard Halsey). Network hauled in the gold for Best Actor (Peter Finch); Actress (Faye Dunaway); Supporting Actress (Beatrice Straight); and Writing (Paddy Chayefsky). All the President’s Men was given awards for Best Supporting Actor (Jason Robards); Art Direction (George Jenkins); Set Direction (George Gaines). The Best Music/Song Oscar-winner titles are memorable too: Barbra Streisand (music) and Paul Williams (lyrics) for Evergreen (Love Theme from A Star Is Born) from A Star is Born.

On March 28, 1979, America's worst commercial nuclear accident occurred inside the Unit Two reactor at the Three Mile Island plant near Middletown, Pa.

1987 Maria von Trapp, whose life inspired the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical 'The Sound of Music,' died in Morrisville, Vt., at age 82. I remember as a kid going to Stowe, VT to the lodge the von Trapp family built & seeing MvT tootling in the garden.

1994 Known as the father of Absurd Theatre, he was a man who said "It's not a certain society that seems ridiculous to me, it's mankind." The penner of Rhinoceros, The Bald Soprano, Exit the King and The Chairs, playwright Eugene Ionesco dies at age 84.

(sources: IBDB, IMDB, NYT's ON THIS DAY,’s Those Were The Days,, MSN)