Sunday, April 18, 2010

Sharon and I took a break ...

Sharon and I took a break: me from Miami and the beaches, Sharon from early Season Four work on Burn Notice. We flew to Washington DC to check out Tyne Daly in Terrance McNally’s Master Class and then trained on to New York to catch up on some theatre in The Big Apple.
Master Class is arguably McNally’s best and there is little that can be said about Tyne’s performance beyond the straightforward truth that she was fabulous. You can look elsewhere (check out the Washington Post review on the Internet) for corroboration and plot synopsis but Sharon, our mutual friend Rosie O’Donnell and I were quite simply blown away. The five of us (the aforementioned foursome along with Rosie’s friend, Tracy) all went out for drinks and dinner after the performance to Ris… a very good, and new-to-me, DC eatery. We laughed with and cheered for Ms Daly while also taking a moment or two to toast Tyne’s double loss of the past few months of her Mother, Hope Newell Daly, and of her Mother-in-Law, Josephine Brown. This was then followed by a raised glass to Tyne’s about- to-be-born newest grandchild by way of the circle of life and her middle daughter, the very beautiful Kathryne Brown. 
Life and death has been on my mind this season. There was the Motion Picture Academy’s slight to the lovely and talented Farrah Fawcett with whom I worked on Charlie’s Angels and for whom I had great respect and an almost school boy crush. Her far-too-soon demise was made even sadder by the fact of it being eclipsed by the sensation of the same day passing of rock icon Michael Jackson. That the Academy’s annual memorial tribute to those in the industry that had died during the year failed to mention her was a gross omission. 
Two television stars I worked with and with whom I had a nice relationship even more recently passed away and I mourn the loss of two of the nicer people I have ever known in a business not particularly celebrated for nice people. I here refer to Fess Parker, who besides bringing the character of Davy Crockett to the known world, starred for six years in Daniel Boone, a series for NBC and 20th Century Fox that I had the privilege of producing for three of those years. Perhaps in some future blog I will reminisce a bit about that time of my life and that working relationship. “Perhaps,” hell; you can pretty much count on it. 
John Forsythe was the other gentle man referred to. He and I worked together for one season of Charlie’s Angels where, as almost everyone now knows, he played the voice of the unseen on camera title role of Charlie. For a lot longer than that year we shared a terrific friend in Award Winning director Martin Ritt with whom John and I spent many a Saturday at Marty’s Race Track Box trying to keep up with our friend, the best handicapper of horse flesh either of us had ever met.
Fess rode horses and John bet on them. They were a great parlay.  


Kelly Doyle said...

Dearest Sweet Barney,

What profound losses you and your friends have suffered. I wish for you a memory as strong as steel so you can look back at your time with your dear friends and colleagues and swear you just saw them the other day. Handling loss is troubling and consumes the mind to no end. Celebrating the lives of those we have lost seems the best way I've been able to mourn. Though losing young souls is the toughest, which is why I take my work with disabled war veterans so seriously.

Sounds like your trip to DC was eventful and enjoyable. Once again, being from the DC metro area, I am in another place at the wrong time to see a Sharon or Tyne performance. They are two of the most influential actresses I had growing up. I still get shivers when I hear the theme song and opening credits to C&L. What INCREDIBLE work everyone did on that marvelous show. I concentrated mainly on Sharons character, as I was more like her, but as of late I'll watch the show and have noticed more of Tynes character and performance. I was always envious of her relationship with her husband Harvey. Wondering as a child if there were ever marriages like that one, because none of my family or friends parents acted as in love as they always did.

I have my answer finally after 27 or so years since first watching C&L as a 7 year old. My soon to be fiance and I are the closest thing to Mary Beth and Harvey as I've ever seen. But feeling that "connection" of love and admiration, respect and intimacy that we share with each other is out of this world. Thank you for giving me fictional characters to aspire to. I've waited for "the one" for awhile and was wondering if I'd really end up the spinster woman down the street with all the Old English Sheepdogs, who smokes cigars, plays poker, and drinks very expensive vodka on a military pension.

Everyone jokes with me when they meet the first love of my life, my 9 year old sheepy Cagney, when I will be getting a Lacey pup to keep her company. Cagney likes ALL the attention. But I will seriously consider during my next go around with a puppy the name Lacey, though I just might have to stick with the name that works but call my next new one CJ, Cagney Jr.

All the best in health and happiness to you and yours.


Unknown said...

Dear Barney, welcome back.
The death of John Forsythe, Farrah Fawcett (and David Doyle several years ago) has saddened me too.
I have wonderful memories of Charlie's Angels, because it reminds me of good times spent with my dad watching the show together, shortly before he died (in 1982).
I always paid close attention to the shows credits (both initial and final although in Italy there is a bad habit of cutting them, especially the final credits of every show) and when I started watching Cagney & Lacey and I read that you were the producer of both (even if only for a year in Charlie's Angels), I always wondered if the name chosen for the character of Christine Cagney's father was an " homage " to Charlie of "Charlie's Angels."
See, you should just write another book "Before and After Cagney & Lacey." . . Maybe an e-book!
It would be interesting!

Cathy said...

Always good to hear from you, Barney. We can all relate to your melancholy...loss is hard.

Your jaunt up to DC and New York sounds like it might have been the perfect tonic. How I wish I could have seen Sharon and Tyne in their respective runs in A Round-Heeled Woman and Master Class.

Keep well, and keep posting. Also, we know that your wife is busy filming Burn Notice and seemingly racking up one honor after another. But how about some gentle coaxing to have Sharon post her own update? We would love to hear from her.

All the best to you, Sharon and Tyne.


Sarah said...
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