Expect the Unexpected

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Archive for the tag “hello dolly”

Happy 95th Birthday Carol Channing!

Carol Channing and her late husband Harry Kullijian at the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival. — Patricia Gay photo

Carol Channing and her late husband Harry Kullijian at the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival. — Patricia Gay photo

Well hello, Carol, I’m so glad you are celebrating your 95th birthday today!

Carol Channing immortalized at Sardi's

Carol Channing immortalized at Sardi’s

I am forever grateful to you for bringing your own special brand of humor and joy to the theater. I will never forget as a little kid listening to my mom’s original Broadway cast recording of Hello, Dolly! I knew then and there I would forever be a Broadway musical and Carol Channing fan.

Singing to the record, (yes kids, we had vinyl records back then) I particularly liked how Carol sang So Long Dearie, with the drawn out opening notes. I sang this song many times when I was leaving a place, a job, or something else unpleasant.
Read more…

A Nifty Fifty for Hello, Dolly!

A parade of Broadway Dollys as seen on CallonDolly.com.

A parade of Broadway Dollys as shown on CallonDolly.com.

The beloved American musical, Hello, Dolly! opened 50 years ago today in 1964, at the St. James Theatre on Broadway.

The show ran for 2,844 performances, which at the time was a record.  It is currently ranked 19th of the longest running shows on Broadway.
Read more…

A tale of two Dollys


Beth Leavel, left, and Klea Blackhurst portray America’s favorite matchmaker Dolly Gallagher Levi in two very different productions of Hello, Dolly!

What kind of fool goes to two different productions of the same show in two weeks? A musical theater fool.

I recently saw two productions of Hello, Dolly! The first was at the Cape Cod Playhouse in Dennis, Massachusetts, starring Tony-award winning actress Beth Leavel (The Drowsy Chaperone). The second was in East Haddam, Connecticut at the Goodspeed Opera House, featuring Klea Blackhurst in the title role. Two very different productions, but great fun for this Dolly fan.

Read more…

Kennedy Center Honors: Carol Channing petition is on its way!


Hello, Carol!

To the delight of her many fans, a petition supporting performing legend Carol Channing for a Kennedy Center Honor is being hand delivered to the honors committee this week.

The petition was started by Richard Skipper, an entertainer, celebrity blogger and MAC award winner, asking the honors committee to recognize Ms. Channing for her lifetime of work and accomplishment and contributions to the performing arts. Read more…

Carol Channing petition is now headed to Kennedy Center

CarolDollyThank you! A petition on change.org that I’ve been talking about for the past week has now received more than a thousand signatures so it will be forwarded to the Kennedy Center for consideration.

The petition supports Carol Channing for a Kennedy Center honor for her lifetime achievement in the performing arts. Carol has been entertaining audiences since the 1940s. Her most iconic roles were Lorelei Lee in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes and Dolly Levi in Hello, Dolly! She also created a foundation with her husband Harry supporting arts education programs in public schools. Read more…

One more push for Carol Channing

The one and only Carol Channing.

The one and only Carol Channing.

We’re so close. A petition on change.org supporting Carol Channing for a Kennedy Center honor needs only 66 more signatures as of the time of this post to reach 1,000.  When it gets 1,000 signatures it will be sent to the Kennedy Center. Won’t you please help and sign the petition today?

I am a fervent supporter of Carol Channing receiving this honor which celebrates lifetime achievements in the performing arts.

Many young people have no idea who Carol Channing is (she is 92 after all), but when I was young she was a huge influence on me. I would listen to her records, yes records, not CDs, and pretend I was her in Hello, Dolly! Read more…

Carol Channing deserves a Kennedy Center Honor

Carol Channing and Harry Kullijian at the Tribeca Film Festival. —Patricia Gay photo

Carol Channing and Harry Kullijian at the Tribeca Film Festival. —Patricia Gay photo

It’s time for a Broadway legend to be recognized for her hard work.

Carol Channing, America’s Dolly Levi, deserves a Kennedy Center Honor.

The Kennedy Center Honors are awarded annually for exemplary lifetime achievement in the performing arts.

Last year’s Kennedy Center honorees were Buddy Guy, Dustin Hoffman, David Letterman, Natalia Makarova and the rock band Led Zeppelin.

In her introduction to the 2012 Kennedy Center award ceremony, host Caroline Kennedy said, “Tonight we salute honorees who, through their artistry and daring, have banished monotony and provided extravagant pleasure and joy to audiences the world over.”

That statement applies to the much beloved Carol Channing, who turned 92 this year. An entertainment icon, Carol first wowed audiences in 1949, as Lorelei Lee in the Broadway production of Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. In 1964, she became a huge sensation as Dolly Gallagher Levi in Hello, Dolly! which became her signature role. The show ran on Broadway for years, and in order not to disappoint fans, Carol never missed a performance. Read more…

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