Saturday, April 21, 2012

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Barbara Harris

Artist:Barbara Harris
Song:Oh, To Be A Movie Star/Gorgeous
Album:The Apple Tree: Original Broadway Cast

Actress Barbara Harris has had a long career in film but started out on Broadway and won a Tony Award for her performance in the 1966 musical The Apple Tree. Though the show only ran for a year, it would have run longer if Barbara hadn't quit to go to Hollywood. She was born July 25, 1935 in Evanston, IL. She started out in Chicago with The Compass Players and then Second City. She moved to New York to appear in the 1961 play From The Second City and was nominated for a Tony. Barbara wanted to move back to Chicago but Richard Rodgers and Alan Jay Lerner wanted to write a show for her so she stayed in New York. That show was On A Clear Day You Can See Forever which was written by Lerner and Burton Lane. She was again nominated for a Tony. She was also doing guest shots on TV and made her film debut in the 1965 film A Thousand Clowns. She was nominated for a Golden Globe. The Apple Tree was written by Fiddler On The Roof composers Jerry Bock and Sheldon Harnick. Mike Nichols directed the 1966 Broadway production. Of course Barbara knew him from Second City. Barbara's co-stars were Alan Alda and Larry Blyden. But the show was written for Barbara. It's a trilogy based on stories by Mark Twain, Frank R. Stockton and Jules Feiffer. Barbara plays multiple roles. Oh, To Be A Movie Star/Gorgeous is from the final part of the show based on Feiffer's Passionella. Barbara won the Tony this time. Then she quit the stage because she didn't enjoy the daily grind. The Original Broadway Cast of The Apple Tree is available as a budget CD from Sony Classical. Barbara appeared in films in the 70s and 80s and was nominated for an Oscar for the 1971 film Who Is Harry Kellerman And Why Is He Saying Those Terrible Things About Me?. She also had significant roles in Robert Altman's 1975 film Nashville, Alfred Hitchcock's 1976 film Family Plot and the 1976 Disney film Freaky Friday. Barbara Harris retired from acting in 1988 and now teaches acting in Los Angeles. Her only appearance since then was in the 1997 film Grosse Point Blank. She says she would return if she was offered an obscene amount of money to do something. She says the best days in her life were back in Second City in Chicago and she wasn't crazy about the other work. Well, at least she has that statue. Here's Barbara Harris with Larry Blyden performing Oh, To Be A Movie Star/Gorgeous on the 1967 Tony Award broadcast.

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