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Today's Birthdays 4/11 - Early Bird Special

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Broadway Legend
Broadway Legend
Paul Douglas 04/11/1907 - Sep 11, 1959 performer, Husband of Jan Sterling (1950 - 1959) his death - Double Dummy; Born Yesterday; A Hole in the Head; film's The Mating Game, Panic in the Streets, Executive Suite, This Could be the Night, It Happens Every Spring; my favs A Letter to 3 Wives & Everybody Does It [was this ever musicalized?]

Oleg Cassini 4/11/1913 - Mar 17, 2006 designer; Gene Tierney's ex; Son of an Italian countess and a Russian diplomat; Not only was he famous for his costume designs for motion pictures, he also designed many of the outfits worn by Jacqueline Kennedy, especially the gown she wore to J.F.K.'s innauguration; Brother of gossip columnist Igor Cassini. - As the Girls Go (Irene Rich, Sullivan)[Produced by Michael Todd; choreo'd by Hermes Pan]; His & Hers (Celeste Holm); Critic's Choice (Henry Fonda, Mildred Natwick, Georgann Johnson); Come on Strong (Carol Baker, Van Johnson); film's The Shanghai Gesture (Gene Tierney); Manhattan Tales; The Razor's Edge (Tyrone Power, Anne Baxter, John Payne); The Ghost & Mrs. Muir (Gene Tierney, Rex Harrison, Natalie Wood, Anna Lee, George Sanders); Where the Sidewalk Ends (Dana Andrews, Gene Tierney); The Ambushers (Dean Martin, Senta Berger, Janice Rule)

Joel Grey 04/11/1932 father of Jennifer Grey, husband of Jo Wilder, son of Mickey Katz - Borscht Capades; Cabaret; George M!; Goodtime Charley; The Grand Tour; 1996 Chicago; Wicked; film's Tony & Academy award-winning actor: Cabaret [1967 & 1972]; singer, dancer: Yankee Doodle Dandy, Buffalo Bill & the Indians, Kafka

Louise Lasser 04/11/1939 Woody Allen's ex - Henry, Sweet Henry; The Chinese and Dr. Fish; tv's & film's Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman; Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex [But Were Afraid to Ask], Frankenhooker, Rude Awakening, The Night We Never Met, Slither

Peter Riegert 04/11/1947 performer, I love this guy as the "Pickle Man"! - Censored Scenes From King Kong; The Nerd; An American Daughter; The Old Neighborhood; tv's & film's The Mask, Oscar, Crossing Delancey, Local Hero, National Lampoonís Animal House, Middle Ages; Law & Order, SVU, The Chosen One

Bill Irwin 04/11/1950 Writer, Choreographer, Director, Performer; Graduate of Oberlin and Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey's Clown College. He was an original member of the Kraken theatre company and the Pickle Family Circus. He directed and performed in "Not Quite/New York", "Scapin" (Roundabout, 1996), "The Harlequin Studies", "Mr. Fox: A Rumination" (both at Signature, 2004). Other acting credits include "Texts for Nothing" (Public Theatre, 1992), "The Tempest" (Public, 1995), "Waiting for Godot" (Lincoln Center, 198Today's Birthdays 4/11 - Early Bird Special and "The Regard Evening (Signature, 2003). - Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf; The Goat [replacement]; Accidental Death of an Anarchist; The Regard of Flight; Largely New York; Fool Moon; tv's & film's Northern Exposure; Stepping Out, Scenes from a Mall, Hot Shots!, My Blue Heaven, Eight Men Out, Popeye


1914 Mrs. Patrick Campbell and Herbert Beerbohm Tree are the very first Eliza Doolittle and Professor Higgins. George Bernard Shaw's tale of class and character, Pygmalion, wins 118 performances at His Majesty's Theatre in London.

1936 Rodgers and Hart provide music and lyrics for On Your Toes at Broadway's Imperial Theatre. George Balanchine choreographs the jazz ballet, Slaughter on Tenth Avenue featuring Ray Bolger and Tamara Geva. The show runs nearly 10 months.

1967 What happens at a castle in Denmark before we learn that Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead is the premise of Tom Stoppard's comedy. John Stride and Edward Petherbridge are the doomed pair at London's Old Vic.

1967 Melina Mercouri has the lead in Jules Dassin's Illya Darling. Joe Darion provides the lyrics for Manos Hadjidakis' music. Dassin adapted the book from Never on Sunday, and he provides the staging. There will be 319 performances at the Mark Hellinger Theatre on Broadway.

1991 Boublil & Schonberg's Miss Saigon opens, updating "Madame Butterfly," making a star of Lea Salonga, and causing a ruckus when Englishman Jonathan Pryce is chosen to play a Eurasian "Engineer."

1996 Rodgers and Hammerstein's most famous duo, The King and I, return to Broadway opening at the Neil Simon Theatre. Lou Diamond Phillips and Donna Murphy shall dance their way to the Tony Awards to capture the Best Actress and Best Revival awards.

2000 Michael Frayn's drama about the much-debated 1941 meeting between German physicist Werner Heisenberg and Danish counterpart, Niels Bohr, in Copenhagen opens at the Royale Theatre on Broadway. The play with minimal set and characters starring Philip Bosco, Blair Brown and Michael Cumpsty will prove sufficient enough to garner the Tony Award for Best Play and Best Director for Michael Blakemore (who also wins the Best Director award for the revival musical Kiss Me, Kate the same night).


1814 Napoleon Bonaparte abdicated as emperor of France and was banished to the island of Elba.

1947 - Jackie Robinson became the first black player in major-league history when he played in an exhibition game for the Brooklyn Dodgers.

1970 Apollo 13 blasted off on a mission to the moon that was cut short when an explosion crippled the spacecraft.

1983 - There were so many outstanding films in 1982, that the members of the Academy must have had a real struggle making up their minds in time for this night at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in Los Angeles. Somehow, decisions were made and the 55th Annual Academy Awards ceremonies proceeded with hosts Liza Minnelli, Dudley Moore, Richard Pryor, and Walter Matthau. Those who voted for Best Picture had to choose between E.T.: the Extra-Terrestrial, Missing, Tootsie, The Verdict and Gandhi. Gandhi (Richard Attenborough, producer) was the winner of this Oscar and seven more including Best Director Richard Attenborough; Best Actor Ben Kingsley; Best Art Direction/Set Decoration (Stuart Craig, Robert W. Laing, Michael Seirton); Best Cinematography (Ronnie Taylor, Billy Williams); Best Costume Design (Bhanu Athaiya, John Mollo); Best Film Editing (John Bloom); Best Writing/Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen (John Briley). Believe it or not there were some Oscars leftover for other deserving folks. The Best Actress golden statuette was awarded to Meryl Streep for Sophieís Choice; while Jessica Lange received her Best Supporting Actress award for Tootsie and Louis Gossett, Jr. picked up his Best Supporting Actor award for An Officer and a Gentleman. An Officer and a Gentleman was honored again for Best Music/Song: Up Where We Belong (Jack Nitzsche and Buffy Sainte-Marie [music], Will Jennings [lyrics], with Victor/Victoria winning the category of Best Music/Original Song Score and Its Adaptation or Best Adaptation Score (Henry Mancini, Leslie Bricusse). Poltergeist, Annie, Rocky III, Blade Runner, Das Boot, Diner, The World According to Garp were also among the nominees at this Oscar celebration. We told you the voters must have had a difficult time voting!!!

1988 - Cher was sure moonstruck at this the 60th Annual Academy Awards at LAís Shrine Auditorium. And as well she should have been. After all, she won the Oscar for Best Actress (Moonstruck), over the likes of Meryl Streep, Glenn Close, Sally Kirkland, and Holly Hunter. Moonstruck struck gold again as Olympia Dukakis picked up the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress, and John Patrick Shanley won for Best Writing/Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen. Almost all of the other awards (9) that evening were won by The Last Emperor (Jeremy Thomas, producer) including Best Picture, and Best Director (Bernardo Bertolucci), except for Michael Douglas who received the Best Actor award for his performance in Wall Street, Sean Connery for his Best Supporting Actor role in The Untouchables, and Dirty Dancing which had the winning Music/Song, (Iíve Had) The Time of My Life (music: Frank Previte, John DeNicola and Donald Markowitz, lyrics: Frank Previte). Funny man Chevy Chase hosted the fun-filled event. Note: The Last Emperor won in every category in which it was nominated.

(sources: IBDB, IMDB, NYT's ON THIS DAY, 440.comís Those Were The Days,

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Broadway Legend
Broadway Legend
Love Paul Douglas! Never knew he was married to Jan Sterling
If I heard the bells and the banjos ring