Saturday, July 31, 2010

Mae West: Damon's Invitation

MAE WEST — — The Brooklyn Bombshell, The Statue of Libido, The Empress of Sex, Diamond Lil — — the iconclast of the 1920s who evolved into an icon.
• • What was the effect on her fans and her loved ones in November 1980, as motion and emotion, shadow and substance began a leave-taking? For many, the final journey leads to a place of stone, cold, and forgetfulness. But some spectacular stars are like Mae West — — sending back light from themselves more like a song than a requiem.
• • Proust said that truth is only a point of view about things. Damon, an avid collector of Westian and a resolute keeper of the flame, celebrates that love and light privately year-round. And every August, Damon helps organize a joyful public commemoration, honoring Mae West on her birthday in Los Angeles, California on a rooftop lit by the stars. Damon offers a first-hand look to our readers and extends an invitation.
• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
• • In commemoration of the thirtieth anniversary of Mae's burial, American devotee Damon Devine writes about Mae West and the West Coast tradition he is such an integral part of.
• • • • Damon recalls: In the very early 1990s (having moved to Los Angeles), I met such wonderful people as Ramfis Diaz and Chris Basinger (the latter a good friend of Mae West’s who was also a switchboard operator at the Ravenswood).
• • • • The Annual Mae West Bash in Hollywood, California • • • •
• • • • I can’t quite remember the year of the first Mae West Birthday party we had, but I remember it was very small and very nice. Each year it grew bigger. It has always taken place at Ramfis’ Hollywood apartment. The early years were amazing, often taking place on an entire floor of the building and ending up on the roof! Beautiful guys of all ages and nationalities would attend, and if they weren’t already a Mae West fan, they were when they left! The coolest and most fun women in all of Los Angeles would find their way to the party as well. Mae West movies would play on several screens, slide projectors on any available wall would display a rare Mae West image, and Mae's music played as well. Ramfis has massive images of West (oil paintings, photos, drawings, etc) all over the place, which makes for an almost surreal Mae West experience (especially after several drinks!).
• • • • The millennium brought ups and downs for the party. Some years left much to be desired and, occasionally, guests exited a bit let-down instead of with a Mae West feeling.
• • • • Other years were fantastic and August 17th, 2009 was by far the best ever. It took place on the roof of Ramfis’ apartment building, on a gorgeous clear night. There was Chinese and Mexican food aplenty, a great crowd and early 1960s lounge music played in between Mae West songs. There were several cakes and Mae West photos ALL OVER the place, and Mae's lucky number 8 scattered about. There were pearl white and gold balloons tied to a staircase, that led from Ramfis’ apartment to the roof.
• • • • Ramfis is extremely dedicated to Mae West, and has been ever since he was a kid. His collection is as massive as mine and Chris Basinger’s (all three of us having the biggest collections in the world, next to Tim Malachosky’s). I know for a fact, she has been a savior to Ram as well. Like myself, I have seen him lean on Mae West to lift his spirits in dark times. We bonded that way. Ramfis is like a brother to me, and Basinger like a father.
• • Well, as usual, we will toast Mae West quite gloriously next month! So come celebrate with us in L.A. Or if you’re in New York, come up and see Mae on Saturday night, 14 August 2010, at Actors Temple [339 West 47th Street, NYC]. Sophie Tucker and Mae West have a great show planned and the public is invited.
Written by: Damon Devine, Hollywood, California

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• • Come up and see Mae every day online: http://MaeWest.blogspot.com/
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Friday, July 30, 2010

Mae West: Hollywood Heartbreak

It was sixty years ago in January 1950, when "Diamond Lil" was onstage, that a British critic interviewed MAE WEST backstage. Throughout his article he kept comparing his impressions of the bawdy, gaudy, bejeweled 1890s saloon singer with the trim, slim, quiet-spoken woman before him, removing her diamond rings and bracelets in her dressing room.
• • You Made Me Love You • •
• • He wrote: "When Diamond Lil, in a voice that exercises her adenoids far more than her larynx, confides (sings is hardly the word) to her listeners the arch sentiments of "You Made Me Love You," a cataract of applause lasting several minutes overwhelms the theatre and stops the show." Continuing his backstage impressions of Mae back in 1950, the Englishman added, "Gone is the voice ranging suggestively between sibilance and gutteralness and in its stead comes a matter-of-fact New York accent liberally interspersed with you-see-what-I-means, kindas, lookas, and cantchas. And not a wisecrack anywhere. She saves those for her plays. ..."
• • How did her loved ones feel in November 1980, vigilant in the lilac light, in the lengthening pulse of a sorrow so profound it was numbing, as shadow and substance began their vanishing? There on the bedside table, a red resurrection of long-stemmed American beauties, its bark peeling back (where thorns were removed), bones sticking through.
• • And how do Mae's lifelong fans feel today — — experiencing the aftermath of her legacy amidst the clutter of the wise and foolish books written about her — — when they rally among themselves?
• • Proust said that truth is only a point of view about things. Damon, an avid collector of Westian and a resolute keeper of the flame, shares his perspective with our readers.
• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
• • In commemoration of the thirtieth anniversary of Mae's burial, American devotee Damon Devine writes about Mae West and the West Coast fellowship he is such an integral part of.
• • Damon recalls: When I was 10, in 1980, I was in the car with my grandfather when a radio news bulletin announced that Mae West had passed away. For some unknown reason I was stricken.
• • MAE WEST died? How was that possible? I had always known of her, everyone did.
• • She was in the news on occasion, in the dictionary and portrayed in one way or another in several different cartoons. To me, she was like George Washington, or Mickey Mouse — — you just knew who she was, no matter what age you were.
• • In 1981
• •
• • A year later, lots of trouble began in my home. I had lived with my ultra-conservative Republican grandparents for three years by that time. Having come to them from my other side of them family, who was very liberal and kind, this was a very bad match. There were constant clashes because they simply could not change my very nature.
• • I was extremely unhappy and knew of no way out. Depressed, and with raging hormones, I happened to have caught ‘Mae West Week’ on TV in November of 1981, commemorating the one year anniversary of Mae West’s passing. I was TOTALLY fascinated! My beaten down self esteem and FEAR of conservatives would cease be week’s end! This lady adored herself, and made FUN of prudes and conservatives! I would love her madly, from then on. When in fear, or when feeling the weight of conservatives in power (be it Reagan or my grandparents!), I was now armed with a flippant one-liner and saw the absurdity of their self-righteousness. It saved me. It really did.
• • I left home at 15 — — and took only my clothes and Mae West memorabilia. Those were two things I could not do without! No matter where I went or ended up, the books, records and photo albums would come with me. No matter where I move, one wall is always dedicated to Mae West, who was a savior of sorts.
• • In the very early 1990s (having moved to Los Angeles), I met such wonderful people as Ramfis Diaz and Chris Basinger (the latter a good friend of Mae West’s who was also a switchboard operator at the Ravenswood). Basinger introduced a twenty-something Tim Malachosky to Mae West in 1973, after he waited for days on end in the Ravenswood lobby, in hopes of catching a glimpse of her. Malachosky, via considerable persistence, would later become a much appreciated gofer of Paul Novak’s (Mae West’s live-in companion), and at times would even get to help with West’s fan mail.
• • • • The Lack of a Mae West Fan Club • • • •
• • One wonders why there are not Mae West birthday parties and fan clubs all over the world to the extent that there are long-running fan clubs for Marilyn Monroe [1926 — 1962], "Norma Jean" songs, annual gravesite memorials for Monroe covered in newspapers, and a never-ending stream bubbling out more book titles. [One Marilyn Monroe fan site, with a long masthead of contributors, reviews a new book about her 10
12 times a year.] Well, I tell it like it is, so get ready to hear the truth.
• • Mae West was not passive sexually nor a conventionally beautiful and tragic figure.
• • She lived a long and very happy life. She always won and was the aggressor. Most straight men can’t handle that, many gay men can’t relate to it (for a majority cling to tragedy, and as a gay person, I feel entitled to generalize there) and, for whatever reason, a great many women would rather be Marilyn Monroe. Why not Mae West and Marlene Dietrich? They were totally unconventional and lived to be older women, with very admirable lives and long careers. Apparently, the world loves a good talent combined with tragedy, so Garland, Monroe and Piaf it is. Don’t grow old, die of your vices, and you too will always be remembered! What a message!
• • Or… it could be as simple as blaming Roger Richman. What has he done to promote Mae West, whose estate he owns? NOTHING. He owns (or owned?) Monroe’s and must have made a pretty penny there (his last name, RICHMAN, is sooo ironic!).
• • Here in Hollywood, Monroe is EVERYWHERE. Every single store on Hollywood Blvd has Marilyn’s image in its windows. Kids buy her post cards, photos, posters and refrigerator magnets without ever having seen one of her films! That should have been Mae West! She could have empowered these young ladies and gays! She is an excellent role model to go after what you want and WIN, when the odds may be against you! She would have shown there is no need to have a huge brood of kids and a husband to be a “real woman.”
• • Where is Mae West’s U.S. postage stamp? Where is her wax figure in Madame Tussauds? They’ve got Raquel Welch’s wax figure in there, but no Mae West! That’s just… wrong. Very, very wrong.
• • Well… we celebrate Mae West every August! So come celebrate with us in Los Angeles! . . . [to be continued]
Written by: Damon Devine, Hollywood, California

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• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
• • Come up and see Mae every day online: http://MaeWest.blogspot.com/
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Thursday, July 29, 2010

Mae West: Free Admission

In the tradition of saving the best for last — — and savoring MAE WEST at last — — the third annual Old Pasadena Film Festival (OPFF) is about to wrap up another al fresco success this weekend with a double feature tomorrow starring, and scripted, by the curvy Brooklyn blonde.
• • In peaceful Pasadena, California, the OPFF makes it possible to enjoy Hollywood's classic motion pictures shown in unique outdoor settings during a summer series for cinema buffs. Old Pasadena Management Association sets up screens and offers free showings at 8:30 p.m., a different feature from Thursday through Saturday.
• • Usually, one movie only is screened. But on Friday night, 30 July 2010 there will be a Mae West double feature — — two 1933 comedies that also feature a young Cary Grant — — in the One Colorado Courtyard. Up first is “She Done Him Wrong,” on the American Film Institute’s prestigious list of the 100 greatest comedies of all time, followed by “I’m No Angel,” inspired by Mae's childhood visits to Coney Island to see Bostock's lions.
• • One Colorado Courtyard is at 41 Hugus Alley, Pasadena, Calif. Tel: 626-564-1066. Admission is free.
• • Tomorrow the MAE WEST BLOG will savor a revealing commemoration of the screen queen by another one of her long-time fans.

• • Come up and see Mae every day online: http://MaeWest.blogspot.com/
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Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Mae West: Footsteps & Footnotes

MAE WEST: how can her impact on pop culture be measured? In November 2010 it will be thirty years since the Brooklyn bombshell left us.
• • The popularity of her one-liners keeps her name popping up in the news almost daily. An astonishingly diverse number of people across the world quote her such as Warren Buffet, artists from India, and fashion designers from France.
• • Mae West still functions as a Muse. Yesterday, for instance, the 41-year-old actor Michael Sheen told HitFix that his character in "Tron Legacy" was inspired by rockers such as David Bowie, Frank-N-Furter from "The Rocky Horror Picture Show," the MC from "Cabaret" and Mae West.
• • The personality she played onscreen has become a familiar reference point. But who was she in real life? Colette praised her as the ultimate woman who did not defer to a man — — on celluloid or in reality. Clearly, Mae West was confident enough to rock the world in a cradle of her own devising, often outwitting those who sought to unhinge her hand or make her stumble. Leaping her shrewd elegant leap across generations, she has landed in the mouth of an Irish soccer coach, in the recollections of a World War 2 veteran, high on the schedule of film fest organizers, and on the list of The Top Ten Motion Picture Classics,
preserved for posterity.
• • Proust said that truth is only a point of view about things. Mark, a devoted Mae-maven, who is working on a manuscript titled "In Search of Mae West," shares his truths and discoveries with our readers.
• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
• • In commemoration of the thirtieth anniversary of Mae's burial, Canadian R. Mark Desjardins writes about "the most interesting woman I never met."
• • • • PART 2 • • • •
• • Continuing from yesterday, Mark offers these fond recollections about his trips to The Big Apple and to Los Angeles, following in Mae's footsteps.
• • • • Mae's Hometown: New York City! • • • •
• • Mark explains: I decided to travel to NYC for the 100th anniversary of Mae West's birth [17 August 1993] with the idea that I could visit her grave site and retrace some of her footsteps in order to get a better idea of her Broadway career. I also needed to research reviews of her plays, etc. and spent several hours at the New York Public Library. Then I discovered that the Performing Arts Library at Lincoln Centre was where I should spend time. By good luck, one of the librarians in "The Cage" named Roderick Bladel, now long retired, became intrigued by my constant ordering of obscure Mae West material and, after two days observing me, asked me about the purpose of my interest. I explained the reason for my journey and he told me he remembered seeing an ad for a Mae West Tour to celebrate her birthday anniversary. By amazing luck, there was one last available seat on the tour, and my reservation was confirmed.
• • The tour was conducted by Sam Stafford, the president and founder of Sidewalk Tours of New York on Sunday, August 15th, 1993. For thirty dollars, a total of sixty fans, approximately 54 of them males, boarded a caravan of three mini buses. Each participant was given a bound commemorative booklet, and our name was written in gold ink on large purple ribbon that surrounded a beautiful huge floral arrangement that was to be placed at Mae's crypt.
• • During the tour, we drove by the site of the Daly Theatre, Mae's apartment residence at 266 West End Avenue, and the Catholic Church she attended from time to time in Manhattan. Of course, the highlight of the tour was our stop at the Cypress Hills Cemetery in Brooklyn.
• • Abbey Mausoleum • •
• • Normally the Abbey Mausoleum is closed to the public, but Sam had obtained permission for the group to enter and view the West family resting place. The building had been state of the art in 1926 when it was built and the only reason Mae West rests there is that when her beloved mother died, she was entombed there. The marble interior was impressive, but obviously the three caretakers who accompanied us appeared somewhat put out that they had to dust off the path we were to take to the top floor. Beautiful stained glass widows that had been broken by vandals were held together by silver duct tape. A bag containing human ashes lay beside a crypt. All other areas in the Abbey were roped off and off limits to us.
• • Sam Stafford upset the caretakers by leading the group to unsheduled stops to the crypts of Victor Moore, Mae's co-star in "The Heat Is On" and James J. (Gentlemen Jim") Corbett, one time Heavyweight Champion of the World, one of her love interests because their resting places had not been dusted off.
• • After Sam checked the floral arrangement to ensure that all the participants names were indeed on the ribbon, we were lead to Mae's final resting place. There were five crypts in all, arranged full length. It appears that Mae was originally placed in the third crypt from the top. Later after her will was read, it was discovered that she had wanted to placed on top. After Beverly passed away, Mae's was removed from the 3rd spot and placed on top.
• • After a brief statement from Sam, the floral arrangement was placed in front of the West family crypt and the participants assembled for a group picture. These flowers were the only ones in evidence in the entire building. I noted that someone had managed to place a tiny rose bud on the bottom ledge of Mae's crypt and that it had dried and was very tiny. Stan told me later that he had visited Mae's crypt the previous Christmas and had noticed the bud back then. It must have been about twenty feet up.
• • At Mae's crypt, the assembled fans shared stories, pictures and memories of their cherished idol. One fan, Rena Burg blew bubbles beneath Mae's crypt and Jori Ellen Schwartzman , a Mae West scholar, videotaped much of the tour, and attempted to interview many of the participants, much to some's dismay.
• • Ron Alexander of The New York Times attended the tour and in his campy assessment of the outing entitled Peel Her A Grape, reported, "Bette [Midler] would be perfect as Mae, if they ever make a movie about her, someone said from the back of the minibus. "I wrote her and told her so," a fellow said. "She never answered."
• • Ron Alexander expounded that Sam was surprised that the tour was even bigger than my "Jackie's World" walking tour or our bus trip to Judy's grave. "This was not a crowd that had to hear last names to know about whom Mr Stafford was talking," Ron stated in his article.
• • West End Avenue Adventure • •
• • Sam had taken a liking to me and was impressed by my interest in Mae and invited me to join him on Tuesday, August 17th to celebrate Mae's official birthday. He had originally wanted to return to the Abbey Mausoleum, but had been denied permission for a return visit. Rather than travel by subway for 40 minutes just to stand outside the Abbey, Sam arranged for Cable One News to interview him in from of Mae's former apartment on West End Avenue. On my way there, I bumped into Roderick Bladel, the librarian who had been so helpful to me and he was thrilled at my good luck to date.
• • Upon arriving at the West End Avenue site, the news crew had not shown up yet and Sam went to telephone them. Meanwhile, I noted that the lobby door to the building had been propped open, and I brazenly snuck into the building and started photographing the lobby interior. The caretaker confronted me and I explained that Mae West had lived her so many years ago and that today was the 100th anniversary of her birth.
• • The caretaker told me that her former suite had been vacated and that I could go upstairs and look around if I wanted to. I accepted his invitation and took countless photographs before realizing Sam would be looking for me. The caretaker stated the news crew was welcome to come up as well and I went back outside with the good news.
• • Rick Burd, another Mae West fan (who had met her) had arrived by now. I was to meet Rick again in Los Angeles a few years later again. After the crew finished interviewing Sam and Rick, I was asked why I had travelled so far to attend her birthday celebration and why I found Mae West so interesting. Realizing my reply may be cut out, I used a Mae West line, "In her own words, 'fascinatin' without being irritatin'!" and, of course, they used it. Imagine my delight later that evening watching the Channel One News as I lay on my bed at the West 63 Street YMCA watching myself on television!
• • Mae West Birthday Celebration In Los Angeles • •
• • Remembering One Annual Event from August 1996
• •
• • The first and only Mae West Birthday celebration in Los Angeles that I have been able to attend to date, apart from the party I plan to attend this August, was the one I participated in August, 1996.
• • Ramfis "Ram" Diaz, a Los Angeles based bartender and musician who has been a long time Mae West fan, hosts this annual party in his apartment in a neighborhood not far from the Ravenswood Apartment building. Weather permitting, the event is held on the rooftop of this art deco era building with the tops of palms trees dotting the horizon.
• • Usually attended by up to fifty or more celebrants such as Chris Basinger who used to be the front desk clerk at the Ravenswood, Damon Devine, a knowledgeable film memorabilia collector, and Kevin Thomas, film reviewer for The Los Angeles Times, the yearly gathering is for "fans and friends of Miss Mae West."
• • Last year's event was the biggest and splashiest to date, with financial backing from the bar when Diaz works. However, with a new employer, Diaz notes that this years celebration may be much more modest in scope. Traditionally Ramfis cooks up an all you can eat spaghetti dinner and guests are encouraged to bring something to toast Mae. Stories and memories of Mae are shared and a general good time is had by all.
• • • • • • One Man's a-MAE-zing Collection • • • • • •
• • As a result of my interest and research in Mae West, I collect any books relating to her career and writings. I am fortunate to have been given a few small items of her personal clothing such as a glove and a handkerchief. I do collect photographs of Mae, but personally find stills of her Las Vegas Review era the most fascinating. Of special interest to me are the series of photographs of her laying in her Vegas suite bed while lifting barbells. Perhaps this harkens back to my early fascination with Mae West stemming from the cheese cake magazine photos that memorized me as a boy.
• • Perhaps the most valuable item I have obtained is a second edition printing of Mae West's biography "Goodness Had Nothing To Do With It' which she personally inscribed to her cousin, "To Henry Doelger my Distinguished Cousin
— — So pleased to have included you in my book. Hope you enjoy my demonstration of progressive education. Affectionately, Mae West 1959."
• • The Lack of a Mae West Fan Club • •
• • It is my thought that Mae West does not currently hold the appeal to have a Fan Club base similar to Marilyn Monroe or James Dean because she died an old woman. Those who die young, in the flower of youth seem to be more revered in pop culture. However, it is my thought that Mae West wanted to appeal to the young and young at heart. She worked all her life to maintain the visual image of "Mae West"
— — an hourglass-figured blonde wise quipping bombshell. At perhaps great personal cost, she has achieved her goal.
• • Hopefully my manuscript "In Search of Mae West" will appeal to a young demographic who will rediscover her. If a bio epic project could be developed aimed at dusting off her image and making it appeal to a youthful audience, I could foresee a huge increase in interest in Mae West. That would make my 18 year plus involvement in this project well worth my while.
• • Mae West's Impact on Me • •
• • What impresses me the most about Mae West is how much an impact she had on 20th century culture. Being basically uneducated past the third grade, she left her mark on our world in a way that will be celebrated well into the future. Her humor, wisdom and healthy attitude towards sexuality are still relevant. She was a woman well before her time.
• • Before I conclude my remarks, I wanted to mention something else that is very important. For me, apart from fulfilling a dream of writing a book, my involvement with Mae West has opened the door to many wonderful friendships with other fans, whom I would otherwise never had met. Bringing diverse people together with her positive message of believing in yourself, taking time to have fun and not taking yourself too seriously is perhaps Mae West's greatest legacy!
Written by: R. Mark Desjardins of Vancouver, B.C. Canada

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• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
• • Come up and see Mae every day online: http://MaeWest.blogspot.com/
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Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Mae West: A Commemoration

MAE WEST: some call her a Hollywood icon, others consider her vulgar, and many are awed by the controversial trailblazer. Has it really been thirty years since the movie queen left us? Considering the fact that she still inspires fashion designers to do a spread on her (such as in the current issue of Harper's Bazaar); that her name pops up in the news almost daily; that a variety of people across the world quote her; and that she is regularly being reinterpreted by dramatists, biographers, actresses, and vocalists; it's fair to say that Mae West is still in the building.
• • There is a queer island of time pooling on North Rossmore. For some, this singular destination has been a blessed habitat where the brain displaces oddments of former lives. Images from Mae's two-bedroom suite, apartment 611, can gleam with rare decorum, suddenly, lifting you out of ordinary time. A door opens to reveal a veritable banquet of a human being. Mysteries are breathing in and breathing out.
• • Proust said that truth is only a point of view about things. Mark, a devoted Mae-maven, who has a most intriguing viewpoint about Mae West, shares his thoughts with you.
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• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
• • In commemoration of the thirtieth anniversary of Mae's burial, Canadian R. Mark Desjardins writes about "the most interesting woman I never met."
• • Mark recalls: When I was 17, I obtained a paperback copy of "The Wit and Wisdom of Mae West" and it was one of the few items I brought with me when I left home to go to college.
• • In 1979, when I graduated, I decided to visit Los Angeles for six months, rather than go to Europe, which was the trend at the time. Ironically, I used to hang out within three blocks of Mae's Ravenswood Apartment, her California residence since 1932
— — not knowing she was alive and well there at the time. Before returning to Canada, I saw a double bill movie in San Francisco featuring "Sextette" and I was surprised at how much the audience howled at the in jokes.
• • • • One a-MAE-zing Dream • • • •
• • Fast forward to the early summer of 1992. I had finished the teaching year and was able to stay up late to catch the midnight CBC Television broadcasts of the only two Mae West movies they had rights to, "Goin'' To Town" and "Klondike Annie."
• • Most fans can say that they came to be interested in Mae West
— — but I believe Mae West came to me. Shortly after viewing those two films, I had a very vivid dream whereby I went back in time to when I was in Los Angeles. In this apparition, I was invited to a quiet dinner party by an older man who had been an actor in the mid 1950s. When I arrived at the soiree, an older lady, quite well dressed and dignified was already seating at the dining table. After the meal, some of the men left the room to smoke. As I didn't smoke, I stayed behind. Someone asked me If I would like to be introduced to Mae West. Of course, I said yes! I went up to her and she looked me up and down coyly and asked me to sit down beside her. We talked about her films I had seen and my impressions of Los Angeles. She seemed very sharp witted and very furious about life.
• • What came next was a shock. She stated I should research the facts of her career. "You might find it interestin'," she insinuated with a throaty laugh. I was dumbfounded at her request, but spontaneously accepted the invitation.
• • Reflecting back on this dream, I've asked myself many times what tweak of imagination this must have been. Perhaps what is even more remarkable — — is that I listened to this dream and immediately sought out any Mae West biographies the local Vancouver used bookshops offered.
• • In short order, I learned that Mae West had an early Broadway career, wrote plays, books and screenplays. I soon exhausted local resources and headed towards Seattle in hopes of finding more out of print books by her. Little did I realize that I would soon be drawn into an incredible journey of not only learning more about Mae West, but also fulfill a buried desire within me — — to become a researcher and writer.
• • Perhaps the spirit of Mae West came to me because of this unresolved desire within me. Whatever the case, once I caught the fever there was no turning back. From friendships I made in Seattle, I learned of a secret horde of Mae West furnishings hidden in storage there. I decided to travel to New York City on the 100th anniversary of Mae's birth in 1993 and that opened doors that eventually lead me to travel of Los Angeles and met Tim Malachosky, Mae's last secretary, and many of the "inner circle" of young men that comprised the mafia with whom she held court in her Ravenswood lair.
• • • • Mae's Hometown: New York City! • • • •
• • I decided to travel to NYC for the 100th anniversary of Mae West's birth [17 August 1993] with the idea that I could visit her grave site and retrace some of her footsteps in order to get a better idea of her Broadway career. . . . [to be continued]
Written by: R. Mark Desjardins of Vancouver, B.C. Canada

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• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
• • Come up and see Mae every day online: http://MaeWest.blogspot.com/
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Monday, July 26, 2010

Mae West: Hoyt's Hit

As a teenager, MAE WEST was cast in the Broadway musical "A Winsome Widow," which was onstage from 11 April 1912 — 7 September 1912. During the second act, one of her ensemble numbers was "Toodle-oodle-oodle on Your) Piccolo" — — billed as a performance by Willie Grow and Girls — — which gave one trade paper another chance to swat the jazzy brunette. Perhaps the critics ought to have slammed the composer Henry Irving Marshall [1883 — 1958] and the Dublin-born lyricist Stanley Murphy [1875 — 1919] for not doing their best, eh?
• • Despite the razzing she got for "Toodle-oodle . . .," Mae West's character La Petite Daffy won some acclaim for her display of vivacity and sauciness. "Mae West assaults the welkin vigorously," applauded the New York Dramatic Mirror from their tony offices on West 42nd Street right opposite the New York Public Library.
• • "A Winsome Widow" was the retooling of a far more successful Broadway show "A Trip To Chinatown" — — a solid-gold sensation for Charles Hale Hoyt [1859 — 1900] which opened at Broadway’s Madison Square Theater on 9 November 1891 and ran for 657 performances (close to two years) on East 24th Street and Madison Avenue.
• • Charles H. Hoyt wrote farcical stuff, low on plot but high on hijinks, silly stage business and boisterous antics that were frequently revised and replaced, which kept ticket-buyers returning. Though he was not much of a songwriter, his fortunate teamwork with composer Percy Gaunt [1852 —1896] created two hits for this comedy, songs that were featured on the show poster and are still known today. One number made a lasting impression on Mae West.
• • New England native Charles H. Hoyt was born in Concord, New Hampshire during the month of July — — on 26 July 1859. Dead at 41 years old, he never got to enjoy the 1912 transformation of "A Trip to Chinatown" nor the pleasure of watching Mae clowning as La Petite Daffy in "A Winsome Widow."
• • However, his long-lasting chart-topper refused to die. Curiously, even though this patently "down low" New York City song had absolutely nothing to do with the plot of "A Trip to Chinatown," a show set in San Francisco, the number was so popular that it proved to be a major factor in the show's success. Set in three-quarter time, the comical lyrics warned good citizens about the dangers of Mae's favorite part of town, the Bowery.
• • • • "The Bowery" [a short excerpt] • • • •
• • Words by Charles H. Hoyt & Music by Percy Gaunt • •
• • Published by T.B. Harms & Co. (NYC) in 1892 • •
• • • • Verse 1 • • • •
• • Oh! the night that I struck New York,
• • I went out for a quiet walk;
• • Folks who are "on to" the city say,
• • Better by far that I took Broadway;
• • But I was out to enjoy the sights,
• • There was the Bow'ry ablaze with lights;
• • I had one of the devil's own nights!
• • I'll never go there anymore.
• • • • Refrain • • • •
• • The Bow'ry, the Bow'ry!
• • They say such things,
• • And they do strange things
• • On the Bow'ry! The Bow'ry!
• • I'll never go there anymore! . . .

• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
• • Inspired by Hoyt's song and enchanted by the Bowery, Mae was determined to revisit the glory days of "the liveliest mile" and so she wrote "Diamond Lil" in 1928, a most profitable trip to Chinatown.
• • Come up and see Mae every day online: http://MaeWest.blogspot.com/
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Sunday, July 25, 2010

Mae West: Singapore Sing

While you're sleeping, an Australian teen is dreaming of MAE WEST.
• • Last week, an announcement for a two-day audition in Sydney promised that 150 hopefuls would be hired for a 13-month contract at Universal Studios Singapore.
• • "Be a part of a world-class entertainment team at Universal Studios Singapore in Resorts World Sentosa," the ad read.
• • Talented youngsters waited their turn to perform in front of talent scouts, seated with clipboards on one knee, at North Strathfield’s ED5 International dance studios at 9 George Street. Ingenues raised "down under" turned up fully costumed as Mae West, Marilyn Monroe, and Betty Boop to do their routine and (perhaps) break into show business.
• • Aussie reporter Shireen Khalil
of the Inner West Courier attended and interviewed a few impressionists who made it through to the final round — — such as Mae West impersonator Taylia Collis, 19, from the North Shore.
• • Shireen Khalil wrote: The aspiring performer believes she’s got American actress and sex symbol Mae West’s look down pat. “I guess I’ve got the look and can play up that character pretty well,” Taylia Collis affirmed.
• • Shireen Khalil noted: The 19-year-old, who has been performing most her life, said she was well-prepared for her audition.
• • Taylia Collis told Ms. Khalil: “I think when I went in I did everything I could. My monologue went well, I was very prepared and I got good vibes from the judges. I had to practice Mae's voice a lot because her pitch is a lot lower than mine."
• • Shireen Khalil concluded her article ["Next stop: Singapore studios" — — 25 July 2010, Inner West Courier] with this comment about Taylia: The all-round performer said getting the job would be a dream come true.
• • In three months, Taylia Collis and the other candidates will find out what the judges thought of their impersonations, if they nailed the accents, and if they have the same shape as the character they had chosen to be during the auditions.
• • Universal Studios Singapore will have a tough time selecting the best Mae West. But it's interesting to see the impact that American pop culture and the Brooklyn bombshell have had on Australia and Singapore.

• • Come up and see Mae every day online: http://MaeWest.blogspot.com/
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Saturday, July 24, 2010

Mae West: Gaites Keeper

It was July 1931 when MAE WEST entered into a complex discussion with the Shuberts about a stage version of The Constant Sinner, based on her bi-racial novel set in Harlem and published by Macauley in hardcover [November 1930].
• • Afraid of offending ticket buyers (especially after the Wall Street meltdown in 1929), and worried about antagonizing the censors, the Shuberts disguised their legal fox-trot with Mae, hiding behind the name of one of their GMs, Joseph M. Gaites [c.1873
1940].
• • Putting a bit of elbow room between the adventurous Brooklynite and the reputable Shubert organization, Joe Gaites cleverly created an indie production company: Constant Productions Incorporated. His back and forth correspondence with the blonde bombshell has been preserved — — along with mainstage contracts signed by Mae West the playwright (on 10 July 1931) and Mae West the Broadway star (on 20 August 1931).
• • When she brought her play "The Constant Sinner" to Atlantic City in August 1931, the crowds lined up for tickets, noted The New York Times: "With two rows of standees and chairs in the aisles for extra celebrants, last Monday night saw Mae West run through her latest daisy chain, The Constant Sinner, at the Apollo Theatre in Atlantic City. . ." [NY Times 30 August 1931].
• • In the role of Babe Gordon, Mae debuted the show on Broadway in September of that year.

• • Come up and see Mae every day online: http://MaeWest.blogspot.com/
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Friday, July 23, 2010

Mae West: Positive Interventions

Just when you thought you saw every trifle or doo-dad linked to MAE WEST, there is one novelty that might be amusing and useful, and it costs less than $5.
• • Cards with Sound, the seller, imperfectly describes it exactly like this: "Birthday Hollywood Musical Greeting Card — — Mae West As Tina [sic] in "I'm No Angel" Movie — — Song: "I'm No Angel" . . . and, yoo-hoo!, someone should tell them Mae's character was TIRA (not Tina).
• • Take this as an observation — — not as a recommendation. We have not seen it in person.
• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
• • Mae West said: "I’ll try anything once, twice if I like it, three times to make sure."
• • Pennsylvania-based Denise Clegg used Mae's one-liner as a trampoline, jumping off that observation to suggest: "We should all take Ms. West to heart when choosing positive interventions — for ourselves or others — — according to two studies recently described by Stephen Schueller in The Journal of Positive Psychology."
• • Denise Clegg added: "Positive interventions are exercises designed to increase well-being. A 2009 meta-analysis by researchers Nancy Sin and Sonja Lyubormirsky shows that several positive interventions reliably and significantly achieve that goal and also reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety."
• • Then Denise Clegg waxed rhetorical: So the question becomes, you can boost your happiness, but can you sustain it? Yes. By doing what you like and liking what you do. ... [Source: "Netflix and Mae West on Positive Interventions" by Denise Clegg for Positive Psychology News Daily on 21 July 2010].
• • That pop culture title paired with Mae's sweet still as Maude Triplett, curvy in a slinky gown, ought to draw in a few insomniacs to read Clegg's "come on get happy" pro-active column referencing Schueller's studies.
• • Certainly, the Brooklyn blonde is the poster girl for upbeat. The comedienne claimed that she carefully channeled her thoughts to keep dark clouds away. Not for Mae a day nettled and grey, her head hanging on its pole of wistful dreams. Better to have devoted the daylight to rehearsing, planning, and writing a few pages loud with possibility.
• • Speaking of smile potential — — and aiming higher than a musical greeting card with Mae mechanically crooning "I'm No Angel" — — there is a chance to come up and see Mae on Saturday evening, 14 August 2010, thereby doing what you like and liking what you do.

• • It's one night only so plan to come up and see Mae — — and Sophie Tucker. Details below.
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —
• • WHERE: ACTORS TEMPLE, 339 West 47th Street, New York, NY 10036 [where SOPHIE TUCKER was one of their first vaudeville members in 1923]
• • WHO: MAE WEST [Anne Marie Finnie], SOPHIE TUCKER [Maggie Worsdale], presented and introduced by playwright LindaAnn Loschiavo
• • WHAT ELSE: Shimmy lessons, raffle prizes, goodies, and a chance to win deluxe European scarves featuring MAE WEST’s quotes.
• • SUBWAYS: IND: C, E to West 50th Street station; BMT: N, R, W to West 49th Street station — — exit on the West 47th Street side.
• • GENERAL ADMISSION: $15. VIP service and Group Sales available.
• • URL: TheGaudyGirls.com

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —
• • Tell them you heard about it on the MAE WEST BLOG.
• • Come up and see Mae every day online: http://MaeWest.blogspot.com/
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Thursday, July 22, 2010

Mae West: Naked Girls Reading

MAE WEST, who inspired the couture designers and editorial stylists behind the scrumptious Harper's Bazaar fashion lay-out this month, has also been tapped for a literary trend mined by several curvy apparel-less burlesque performers. You mean you haven't heard about NGR? Read on.
• • Years ago, a promotional whiz kid developed a high-concept stage show, "Naked Boys Singing." Grooving to a similar vibe, a Chicago photo-journalist Franky Vivid created a get-your-pulses-racing classic with his burlesque queen wife Michelle L’amour, “Naked Girls Reading.” Truthful to their advertising, it is exactly that. Burlesque beauties — — undecorated by G-strings or whimsical pasties, and entirely nude — — take shelter behind a book. Often the delectable stripper-lectors are adorned in eye-popping crowns and blazing headgear, six-inch heels, and a frosting of glitter.
• • According to Paula Citron, writing for Great Britain's Globe and Mail: And it’s an all-star international lineup of naked readers who kick off the five-day, third-annual Toronto Burlesque Festival at the Gladstone Hotel Wednesday night. NGR, in fact, is the newest phenomenon of the phenomenal burlesque revival. ...
• • For the “Independent Women” show, readings included Mae West • •
• • Michelle L’amour told the news media more about NGR as a form of entertainment. L’amour explained: “We hold the series every month at my studio. Each evening has a theme, and each girl selects her own material which can come from fiction, non-fiction, song lyrics, or poetry. For example, for the “Independent Women” show, readings included Mae West, Dorothy Parker, and Coco Chanel. We publish the reading lists on our nakedgirlsreading.com website.” ...
• • Caveat lector! Naked Girls Reading was at the Gladstone Hotel on Wednesday, 21 July 2010. However, the Toronto Burlesque Festival will continue until 25 July 2010 at various venues.
— — Source for this information: — —
• • Literary Festival: "Naked girls reading? Burlesque turns a page — — Books aren’t all that’s on display at a Toronto revival festival"
• • By Paula Citron
• • Published in: The Globe and Mail [UK] — — www.theglobeandmail.com
• • Published on: Wednesday, 21 July 2010

• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
• • Tell them you heard about it on the MAE WEST BLOG.
• • Come up and see Mae every day online: http://MaeWest.blogspot.com/
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Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Mae West: Covered

Early in 1934, with three screen hits in a row boosting her brand, MAE WEST was fast becoming not just a star but a commodity whose face was guaranteed to sell a soap, a cigarette, a song sheet, or a magazine. Celebrated throughout the United States for "Night After Night" [1932], "She Done Him Wrong," [1933], and "I'm No Angel" [1933], and promoted by Paramount Pictures through black and white stills, posters, and personal appearances, Mae's face and figure began to pop up everywhere.
• • This issue of the humor magazine Ballyhoo juxtaposes Mae's generous eye-candy curves and Garbo's surreal slinkiness depicted in stop sign colors.
• • Ballyhoo first appeared on newsstands during the month of July — — 1 July 1931. Though the word has a few definitions, ballyhoo most commonly means sensational advertising or favorable publicity.
• • Ballyhoo was a humor magazine published by Dell, and created by George T. Delacorte Jr. [20 January 1894 — 4 May 1991]. During its heyday, it had a circulation of over 2 million.
• • From 1931 — 1
939, Ballyhoo was edited by Buffalo-born Norman Hume Anthony [1889 — 1968], who had helmed Judge Magazine and boosted its circulation quickly. Though the Great Depression killed off Ballyhoo along with many other magazines, there were a few attempts to resuscitate the irreverent monthly after World War II, between 1948 and 1954.
• • In common with other magazines of the era, it featured a central section dedicated to one-off cartoons; however, in the surrounding pages it presented spoof ads and articles — — much in the manner later popularized by the satirical spoofer Mad Magazine.
• • Come up and MOUSE me • •
• • In 1928, both Minnie and Mickey Mouse had been created by Walt Disney; six years later the cartoon rodents were becoming their own familiar brand — — though "Minnie" would not be named until the early 1940s. Pennsylvania-born cartoonist James Trembath drew this double page for the centerfold of the February 1934 issue, featuring the female mouse mincing in magnificent millinery as a Mae-wannabe.

• • Come up and see Mae every day online: http://MaeWest.blogspot.com/
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Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Mae West: Keith & Proctor's, Harlem

• • MAE WEST was an admirer of The Clef Club. As rehearsals began in early July 1922 for "The Ginger Box Revue," the producer had decided to book this exciting group — — New York's premiere African-American musicians — — to play between the acts, perhaps upon Mae's insistence. This organization had been established by James Reese ["Jim"] Europe [1881 — 1919] and Henry Creamer, two gentlemen whose musicianship found a lifelong fan in Mae West.
• • Two members of The Clef Club were Eubie Blake and Noble Sissle. In an interview published in 1976, Eubie Blake explains why black vaudevillians went on in second place — — and tells about the time they were booked in the same Harlem showplace on 125th Street as Mae West in 1919, Keith & Proctor's Vaudeville Theatre.
• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
• • • • MAX MORATH: James Reese Europe was best known, I think, as the composer-conductor for the famous dance team of Vernon and Irene Castle, until Vernon Castle died in a World War I training accident.
• • • • EUBIE BLAKE: I begged him! I begged him not to fly. Listen, one Saturday night Mr. and Mrs. Castle are going down to Texas. He says, “Well, I’m going to Texas and teach some of the guys to fly.” So I said to Mr. Castle, “Do me a favor, don’t fly any more. You’re too valuable a man to fly.” And he laughed at me and said, “I’d rather fly a plane than go down in that subway.” And I don’t know what day it was, but a couple of days after that a guy was flying and he did something wrong and Castle ducked under him to catch him with his plane and POW [claps his hands together]! Both of them.
• • • • MM: And then Jim Europe was murdered.
• • • • EB: Yeah, in May 1919. A drummer in his band. Crazy.
• • • • MM: Ironically, it was Jim Europe’s death that led to the formation of Sissle and Blake as a performing team — — wasn’t it?
• • • • EB: Well, [Noble] Sissle said, “You know what we could do? We could go into vaudeville.” Sissle was always more aggressive than I was. So Pat Casey — — he’d booked Jim Europe’s band — — Pat Casey’d heard Sissle, Sissle told him about me, and Casey said put an act together. And we did something no act has ever done, then or since. We opened, played four days in New Haven. Then three days in the Harlem Opera House — — not the Apollo, the Apollo was a burlesque house then — — then right to The Palace. We screamed them! ...
• • • • MM: Did you continue playing the entire Keith Circuit?
• • • • EB: We didn’t play the deluxe houses, like the Paramount. They said we drew Negroes. We didn’t draw Negroes. We didn’t have a Negro act. I did a little light Negro comedy, a bit of dialect. Sissle didn’t like that. Sissle never sang in dialect. He was right out of college — — Butler, Indianapolis. We’d just sit and entertain, wrote all our own material. When I’d play piano, I’d play a pop song, but I wouldn’t announce it. We had an act you couldn’t follow. But usually we had to work number two.
• • • • MM: Number two — — you mean second place? In an eight-act bill? Why was that?
• • • • EB: All colored acts used to go on second. And they dressed on the last floor next to the toilet. Now, this story I’m going to tell you is about Joe Kennedy — — before he was ambassador to London. Old Man Kennedy. We were playing that theatre way up Broadway [211 West 125th Street, New York, NY] — — Keith vaudeville, you hear what I’m saying? That’s the first time I saw Mae West. We were on the bill with her. Anyway, Joe Kennedy comes backstage and says to this man in charge, “Who told you how to line up a vaudeville show?”
The man don’t know who he is. I’m standing there; I don’t know either. I says, “Why?”
Joe Kennedy explains, “Because you got Sissle and Blake on number two and the show’s top-heavy. Why do you put them on number two?”
And the man said, “All colored acts go on number two.”
• • • • MM: What was the reason for that?
• • • • EB: The newspapers — — the writers — — don’t come in till the third act or so. When they come in, you’re already off. You don’t get in the write-ups. You’re like the also-ran at the races. Every time they moved you down, you’re supposed to get more money. But not us. I don’t know about other colored acts, I’m talking about Sissle and Blake. They’d move us down, next to closing — — that’s the star’s place — — and we still got three hundred dollars a week. That’s all we got. Well, we got four hundred to play the Palace.
• • • • MM: Did you ever work next to closing — — the star’s spot — — on the opening night of a run?
• • • • EB: Plenty of places we played the sticks — — three a day. We starred in those places. ...
— — Excerpt: — —
• • Interview: "The 93 Years of Eubie Blake"
• • Interviewed by Max Morath
• • Published by American Heritage Magazine
• • Published: October 1976, Volume 27, Issue 6

• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
• • About Eubie Blake & Noble Sissle, Clef Club members • •
• • Born in Baltimore as James Hubert Blake [7 February 1887 — 12 February 1983], Eubie Blake was an American composer, lyricist, and pianist of ragtime, jazz, and popular music.
• • In 1917
he became assistant conductor to Jim Europe at The Clef Club. After Jim's death in May 1919, Eubie forged a vaudeville team with Noble Sissle.
• • In 1921, Eubie Blake and long-time collaborator Noble Sissle wrote the Broadway musical "Shuffle Along," one of the first Broadway musicals to be written and directed by African Americans.
• • Born in Indianapolis, Indiana, Noble Sissle [10 July 1889 — 17 December 1975] was an American jazz composer, lyricist, bandleader, singer, and playwright.

• • Come up and see Mae every day online: http://MaeWest.blogspot.com/
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Monday, July 19, 2010

Mae West: Broadway Rush

The challenge of stepping into the shoes of a Russian ruler was a long time coming for MAE WEST. Known for comedies, novelty numbers, the shimmy, fast taps, and suggestive stage frolics, the Brooklyn blonde was not readily seen as the type to helm a serious historical drama.
• • But prior to the Broadway premiere of "Catherine Was Great" on 2 August 1944 at the Shubert Theatre, the Empress of Sex ran into many other over-heated complications during the month of July.
• • If you've ever produced a play or sat in to observe rehearsals, you are aware that a large cast takes up space and costs money to costume (which includes the wigs, make-up, hats, crowns, props, etc.).
• • Always trying to keep actors employed, Mae West usually went overboard when hiring. In 1944, the main cast numbered around three dozen
— — in addition to the barge-load of individuals hired to portray the empress's six ladies-in-waiting, nine soldiers, two ushers, six councillors, six guards, henchmen, peasants, waiters, and even a chimney sweep.
• • According to an article in Billboard Magazine [The Billboard, 12 August 1944], Mike Todd and Mae West shared the financial burden of mounting this costume drama — — $150,000, not an inconsiderable sum during the World War II era. And though she often hired inexperienced actors and actresses for the minor roles, Mae West sought out the best costume people and set designers. Despite the savage reviews that would greet the star's own efforts, the critics heaped praise on the production itself, calling the scenery "as beautiful as Howard Bay's best" and rhapsodizing over lavish details such as the fireplace set in Count Mirovich's apartment and the decor of the ghoulish "secret room" of Ivan VI where a murder occurs.
• • During the month of July
— — when Catherine II began her reign as Empress of Russia on 9 July 1762 — — there would have been a lot of ceremonial fuss, sewing, hand beading, and dress rehearsals going on between July 9th and the mid-September coronation. Could Catherine the Great's court been as large as Mae West's retinue, you may wonder.
• • Imagine the crowds that gathered during July 1944 in front of the Shubert Theatre [225 West 44th Street], trying to buy tickets to opening night for Wednesday 2 August 1944 as the carpenters and lighting designers readied these elaborate sets. Imagine the critics sharpening their pencils. Imagine Mae West and Mike Todd . . . warming to a discussion about the budget. Hot times.
• • • • West 47th Street on 14 August 2010 • • • •
• • This summer join the Mae-mavens in the theatre district next month. The live entertainment will be hot and especially exciting on Saturday, 14 August 2010 when two swell broads head back to Broadway — — Sophie Tucker along with Mae West.
• • Continuing her custom of commemorating the birthday of Mae West, playwright LindaAnn Loschiavo has a most exciting late-night treat in store this year: The Gaudy Girls, two talented beauties who perform the best-loved songs made famous by Sophie Tucker and Mae West. As part of their repertoire, the ladies will spotlight a tribute to the NYC-based composers and lyricists who created popular numbers such as "My Yiddishe Momme," "Red Hot Mama," "Everybody Shimmies Now," "My Old Flame," "Baby, It's Cold Outside," and more.
• • It's one night only so plan to come up and see Mae — — and Sophie. Details below.
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —
• • WHERE: ACTORS TEMPLE, 339 West 47th Street, New York, NY 10036 [where SOPHIE TUCKER was one of their first vaudeville members in 1923]
• • WHO: MAE WEST [Anne Marie Finnie], SOPHIE TUCKER [Maggie Worsdale], presented and introduced by playwright LindaAnn Loschiavo
• • WHAT ELSE: Shimmy lessons, raffle prizes, goodies, and a chance to win deluxe European scarves featuring MAE WEST’s quotes.
• • SUBWAYS: IND: C, E to West 50th Street station; BMT: N, R, W to West 49th Street station — — exit on the West 47th Street side.
• • GENERAL ADMISSION: $15. VIP service and Group Sales available.
• • URL: TheGaudyGirls.com

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —
• • Tell them you heard about it on the MAE WEST BLOG.
• • Come up and see Mae every day online: http://MaeWest.blogspot.com/
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