MAE WEST was more willing to reveal her early background to a good-looking reporter. Let's see what she said.
• • "Mae West's First Audiences Were Church Socials" • •
• • John C. Moffitt Tells the Story of Mae West • •
• • Lawn Socials • •
• • John C. Moffitt clarified: Mrs. West was a Jewess [sic] but there were a lot of Catholics in Brooklyn and, during the summer months, the Catholics had a weakness for lawn socials. Lawn socials are well-attended by folks who are eager to be entertained. No beagle ever pursued a fox with the persistence that Mae's mother would cling to the spoor of an audience. It wasn't long before she had made contacts with the good-natured priests and nuns of the parishes, who indulgently said certainly little Mae could do her imitations at socials. The socials were more or less community affairs, not strictly denominational in their attendance. Mae was not paid anything, but she appeared before audiences and her mother was shrewd and sharp telling her what went over and what did not.
• • John C. Moffitt quoted Mae: "I wonder what some of those sour guys that are always deriding me would think if they knew my first work was on a church circuit?" Mae once speculated. "I played at all the big Catholic lawn socials and I filled in with what Protestant time we could get."
• • John C. Moffitt noted: Mae recalls these associations with simple church folk very kindly. She is said to be a regular contributor to Catholic charities in Los Angeles and you occasionally see her at Mass, although never at the early ones. She is not a communicant, according to members of her household.
• • "Nuts to Madagascar!" • •
• • John C. Moffitt added: Her school days were sketchy. Her mother, preoccupied with the ambition of making Mae like Eva Tanguay, gave the teachers slight attention when they complained that Mae was an educational problem. Mae, the individualist, was always in trouble. ...
• • This is Part 4. This very long article will be continued on another occasion. Hope you enjoyed all four excerpts that were transcribed.
• • Source: The Straits Times (Singapore); published on Sunday, 25 November 1934.
• • On Monday, 28 November 1932 • •
• • At the MPPDA board meeting on Monday, 28 November 1932, Adolph Zukor made promises to Will Hays that only "suitable material" would find its way into the script and the "Diamond Lil" title was already gone.
• • Overheard in Hollywood • •
• • In 1922, the new act "clicked," and Miss West figured, as she says, "We'd give a still bigger flash with an extra pianist 'a Jack Smith' with a nice voice and a nice personality," and "whispering Jack Smith" was born.
• • In Her Own Words • •
• • Mae West said: "When I was eleven years old, there was a break. I wasn't one of those curly, cute, theatricals kids any longer."
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • The Motion Picture Herald mentioned Mae West.
• • Costumed Team Plug "Town" for Harpster • •
• • A team of a gal and two boys dressed in Gay Nineties costumes acted as Frank Harpster's street bally at the Ohio in Mansfield, Ohio, carrying suitcases placarded with "We're Goin' to Town to see Mae West." The three visited department stores and dined at leading restaurants.
• • Source: Item in Motion Picture Herald; published on Saturday, 24 August 1935
• • The Mae West Blog celebrates its 10th anniversary • •
• • Thank
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• • By the Numbers • •
• • The Mae West Blog was started ten years ago in July 2004. You are reading the 3059th blog post.
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• • Photo: • • Mae West • • in her male costume circa 1908 • •
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