Monday, June 27, 2011

Mae West: John Golden

MAE WEST worked with John L. Golden, who was given credit for "Call Me Flo," one of the musical numbers created for "A Winsome Widow" [1912] and later published. Hired to play the role of La Petite Daffy, Mae was involved in this musical through its entire run from 11 April — 7 September 1912.
• • Born in New York City during the month of June — — on 27 June 1974 — — John L. Golden attended New York University and spent time employed as a reporter before turning his pen to stage plays. Whether as an actor, a theatre owner, producer, or lyricist/ composer, Golden was actively engaged in a Broadway production from 1900 for 55 years (when he died). This formidable font of energy was an ASCAP charter member, founder of the Stage Door Canteen and Stage Relief Fund, owner of the Golden Theatre, and a legendary figure in the Times Square area.
• • John Golden died of a heart attack in Bayside, New York on 17 June 1955. He was ten days away from his 81st birthday.
• • On 27 June 1954 in Las Vegas • •
• • "We didn't know what to expect when the Mae West Review opened at The Sahara on June 27th," Steve Rossi told me. "But as soon as the women in the audience saw the bodybuilders, my God, they started to storm the stage. Well-dressed ladies in gowns and furs and diamonds — — and the hotel security had to do something fast. This had never been done before. There was quite a delay until they got everybody back in their seats!" Rossi recalled about their highly anticipated debut in Vegas.
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • Setting his prologue in Chicago in January 1933, N.Y. Times reporter Don Van Natta, Jr. writes: The owners of the Palace were especially worried. Built just six years earlier to take advantage of all the shrillness of America's giddiest and gaudiest decade, with embellishments designed to evoke the royal palaces at Versailles and Fontainebleau, this monument to Roaring Twenties excess was now struggling for survival. Formerly the tough-ticket showplace for headliners such as Mae West, Jimmy Durante, Sophie Tucker, and Bob Hope, the Palace had been relegated to featuring also-rans performing before a valley of vacant maroon seats. It seemed that everyone in Chicago was hoarding their nickels and dimes for the city's new movie houses or staying home to listen to Eddie Cantor and Bing Crosby on the radio. ...
• • Source: Excerpt: "Prologue: Matinee at the Palace" written by Don Van Natta, Jr. at the start of his biography "Wonder Girl"; published by Little, Brown & Co. in 2011
• • By the Numbers • •
• • The Mae West Blog was started seven years ago in July 2004. You are reading the 1974th blog post. Unlike many blogs, which draw upon reprinted content from a newspaper or a magazine and/ or summaries, links, or photos, the mainstay of this blog is its fresh material focused on the life and career of Mae West, herself an American original.
• • Come up and see Mae every day online:
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• • Photo: • • Mae West • • June 1954 • •
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