Sunday, March 24, 2013

Episode 23 with Harve Presnell and Donald O'Connor


The opening of Episode 23 on March 24th, 1973 was quite a departure from Julie’s earlier shows. In a tribute to the popular Kung Fu films, a group of Karate Black Belts were on the stage, practicing their moves. Meanwhile, in the back we see Julie Andrews, dressed in a simple white pantsuit with a black belt, hands clasped behind her, standing stock still. She probably was advised to do so as well, in order not to get hurt!

Eventually, Julie begins to sing, “Something’s Got to Give.” At certain moments, she does her own Karate moves. A series of shots with the Black Belts, leaping, breaking blocks of wood are shown, sometimes catching them mid-air or mid-move follows. Finally, one fellow takes everyone out. Things are flying around Julie, and it’s difficult to imagine that she shot this scene without breaking into laughter. In the end, the winner takes the prize—Julie--that is until she knocks him out herself!

Of course, this entire show is not about Karate. Ms. Andrews soon introduces her wonderful guests, Donald O’Connor and Harve Presnell, who we are told has flown in from London where he is starring (as Rhett Butler) in the musical version of Gone with the Wind. Unfortunately, this show did not succeed.

To Learn More about Harve Presnell who sadly left us in 2009, please visit:


                                                ***

The first half of the show is Julie and Donald O'Connor. They begin with songs about streets and we are taken back to old Broadway and the great musicals of the 1940s. It’s obvious that Julie enjoys working with Donald O’Connor and they make a great musical pair. Watching this, one wishes they had made a film together.

After the opening number, Julie appears dressed in a button gown of old English Music Hall, but it’s an elegant button gown, with a train. She also sports a cap. She and her fellows sing an updated version of the “The Old Kent Road.” (You may recall Shirley Temple sang this song with Arthur Treacher in the film, The Little Princess, though I imagine most British people know it for other reasons.

Donald O’Connor appears onstage next with the eight Tony Charmoli Dancers, singing and dancing “When My Sugar Walks Down the Street (the Little Birdie’s go Tweet, Tweet, Tweet.”)  To have something to sing about, Julie walks by them first. She’s dressed in a tight fitting-dress, twirling a handbag and swinging her hips. She appears again at the end, and says ‘hello’ to the guys in a manner it’s difficult not to laugh at. Very cute. The song and dance by O’Connor and fellows is just a classic.

The next musical number takes us to Paris! Julie and Donald are singing “Bonjour Paris,” a song from Funny Face. Musical walkways are used for this number and the dancers join in. From here, we move to New Orleans. It’s a great scene, beginning in darkness and moving to a brightly lit stage, everyone is wearing wonderful costumes with hats, and waving and slapping their tambourines. Julie appears dressed like a saloon singer. There’s a lot of dancing and rhythm, and everyone on stage seems to be having so much fun, it makes you want to jump out of your chair and join them! Wow! What a wonderful set of musical numbers, but it’s not over yet.

 To learn more about musical comedy star, Donald O’Connor, please visit:


                                                   ****

Just before our intermission, we hear some familiar music and out comes Rich Little as Johnny Carson. Even before he says a word, he’s got Johnny down to a “T” and we can’t help loving him. There are great jokes and lots of laughter. “After the commercial we’ll have WWII with the original cast and a surprise ending.” It’s all in the way he says it, and we have to laugh. From there, Rich changes to Jack Parr – that is Jack Parr putting down Rich Little. Whether you remember Jack Parr or not, Rich Little is still funny.
                                          ****

If the entertainment was great for Part one of this show, part two astounds. The music comes up and Julie appears as a vision, playing the girl in various costumes in the art work (this period and artist eludes me now and will have to be filled in later.)--while Harve Presnell sings about “Julie.” It is stunning.

Soon, we see Julie wrapped in yards of plush satin singing, “But Not for Me.” She appears in other costumes with wigs as well (recreating the artwork). In one, she looks like a Jane Austin character. This is a lovely and amazing series on pictures that must be seen, rather than described. I can imagine someone wanting this artwork on their wall.

Then, suddenly, as Harve Presnell sings, we see Julie, in a flowing white gown, the wind blowing her chiffon gown as she twirls. He meets her and they dance to “Out of My Dreams” from Oklahoma. It is a glorious, unbelievably beautiful scene, during which Julie gets to use her voice in a way that only she can. A true work of art.

                                                      ***

Next, we have a break from beauty. This portion of the show is a comedy-drama in which Julie, wearing a sleek form-fitting modern dress with a gold coin-link belt, is in danger and needs to escape. At least, that’s what she’s told by Rich Little who is playing Humphrey Bogart in a scene from one of his films.

As Julie travels from place to place, she encounters Rich again, in the persons of Perry Mason, John Wayne, Truman Capote and Henry Fonda, among others. The acting is extremely well-done, and by the end, Julie has messed up her hair as she runs her fingers through it in despair. Finally, she stands swigging a big bottle of wine. She hiccups and then, the unexpected reaction sets her into a fit of laughter, obviously not planned for the scene, but the director has left it in, all for our enjoyment. 

Now we see Julie, standing on a spiral stairway, wearing deep pink and purple. She sings “The Man That Got Away,” all the while, going round and round, down the staircase, until at the end she is seated at the bottom. The song is well-done, the staircase, a bit dizzying. A comic touch ends the scene. The phone rings and Julie has to run all the way up those stairs to see if the ‘man that got away’ is calling!

Finally, we see the three stars before us: Donald O’Connor, Julie Andrews and Harve Presnell. Mr. Presnell is quite tall and for once—a rare occasion as Julie is 5’7,” she looks small. 

On this night, the trio is celebrating the music of Frank Loesser, giving us some rare treats. For the opening Donald O’Connor and Harve Presnell sing “Standing on the Corner, Watching All the Girls Go By.” Although these two performers have about a foot difference in their height, they are equally strong and it’s great. In the end, Donald O’Connor does a pratfall, falling on his face.

Next, Julie, wearing a lovely gown, on a set with flowers, begins a new scene with “Somebody, Somewhere” a song rarely heard. She comes forward to join Harve Presnell for “My Heart Is So Full of You.” This musical number with these two great musical performers brings tears to the eyes. It is beautiful and THRILLING! I can say no more than that. It amazes me that this musical treasure, among others, has not seen the light in forty years. What a shame. (I neglected to say, this should be top of the list for any duet CD with Julie Andrews.)

The cast now moves on to the musical, “Where’s Charley” and after some fun with the whole cast, especially Julie who can make you laugh just by looking into the bassoon she is supposedly playing, we get to see O’Connor sing and dance, “Once In Love with Amy.” Short of seeing the original, Ray Bolger, watching Donald O’Connor is great entertainment. You cannot help but get a smile on your face as you watch him.
From here, the show moves to “Guys and Dolls.” Julie, sporting a feather boa, takes the solo, “If I Were a Bell” and she is ready to go. She’s having a great time singing this number, looking into the camera right at us, and we can’t help having a great time with  her.

Presnell follows with “Luck Be a Lady.” His persona and voice are powerful. It’s a thrill to see a great performer like this, sing a great musical theater song.

The scene from “Hans Christian Anderson,” perhaps a lesser known musical by Frank Loesser is quite enjoyable. Julie Andrews and Donald O’Connor are seated in a swing together, singing. Donald, who once sang with Ethel Merman, is not meek about his part of the song and holds his counterpoint melody strongly. There’s great pleasure between these two performers working together and it makes it all the more pleasurable for us, the audience.

“I Believe in You” from “How to Succeed in Business without Really Trying” is sung by Harve Presnell and Julie Andrews. Then, with two faces looking at one another through the bubbling water bottle dispenser, the camera pulls out as the cast joins together to sing and dance, “Brotherhood of Man.”

Once again, the obvious enjoyment of great talent working together, singing great music just overflows from this show. And when Julie Andrews is truly happy to be performing, she radiates with beauty and joy.

As Julie says 'goodnight’ to her guests, Donald replies, “It’s always a pleasure to dance on your show,” and gives us an impromptu tap step, then leaps through the air as he leaves the stage. Harve follows with a few notes and Julie responds in a few notes, sounding like a deep-voiced diva.  Rich Little closes out as Cary Grant.

Then, standing before the set of Loesser sheet music and a deep, starry sky, Julie sings the entire song, “Time Is My Friend,” a rare event. As she sings “Time now to go, for everything must end,” do we detect a tear in her eye? She has one more show to go. Sad, indeed. But what a wonderful night it was. And what a treasure!

© Michelle Russell


For those of you who would like to see The Julie Andrews Hour released on DVD and shown on television in your area, please contact:  dan.gopal@itv.com  
and let your voices heard!
Be sure to ask for the release of the music on CD as well!
Thank you!


All photos on this blog are for entertainment purposes only.
For more information on The Julie Andrews Hour and a list of subjects on this blog, please visit:


Cancelled!


     In the early spring of 1973, the fate of The Julie Andrews Hour hung in the balance. Everyone knew that at some point the word would come down—either they would be renewed for another season or cancelled. Meanwhile, everyone, including Julie Andrews, continued to work as hard as they could to make the show a success. Success would mean their ratings had gone up.

     During the early spring, Julie Andrews gave a number of interviews. Interestingly, these interviews reveal that during the late 1960s, Julie considered her career to be in decline. Now knowing what the future held, the success or failure of The Julie Andrews Hour must have held an even greater importance to her. Nevertheless, she spoke logically about the possible cancellation of the show saying, “…all you can do is your best.”

    In an interview which appeared in the May 1973 McCall’s, as she considered the possible verdict about the show, Julie is quoted as saying, 

“Of all the people who will know, they tell me I’ll be first, which, it seems to me, would only be good manners.” 

As it turned out, that is not what happened.

    Sometime in late February or early March, (between Episode 20 with Sandy Duncan and Sergio Franchi and Episode 22 with Carol Lawrence and Steve Lawrence), the star and crew of The Julie Andrews Hour learned that ABC was cancelling the show; there would not be a second season.

Julie later stated that she learned the news with everyone else. From this, we can only imagine that the announcement took place on a Monday at one of the production meetings, when everyone was gathered on the stage, preparing for that week’s show. It is difficult to imagine the feelings onstage that day. Yet being the professional that she was and is, Julie continued on just like everyone else. Whatever emotions she felt were kept private. In her McCalls interview she states that if the show is cancelled, she will feel bad for everyone who has worked so hard. However, several years later, when being questioned on a television interview about her career, her pain and bitterness is evident. There is a hurt in her voice that reminds one of the pain in Princess Diana's voice when being interviewed about the break-up of her marriage to Prince Charles.

The only female writer on the team of writers, Lila Garrett, feels that the cancellation of The Julie Andrews Hour didn’t necessarily have to do with the ratings. Later, Ms Garrett produced a television series which was also cancelled in it's first season. This series was among the top five rated shows, but, Ms. Garrett states, because of studio politics, her show was axed anyway. 

Producer Nick Vanoff’s sister, Sandy Vanoff, who replaced Vanoff's assistant Nancy Heydron in January of 1973, also has memories of the cancellation. 
  
          “I do remember when we got word the show was cancelled. 
          Lots of disappointment and really hard to believe they cancelled
          the show after one season, especially since each and every show
          was like producing a network special.  The hours were long but the
         experience was like no other.”

In hindsight, it seems clear that The Julie Andrews Hour should not be judged on the fact that it was cancelled. The wonder is that it was ever created at all!

© Michelle Russell

For those of you who would like to see The Julie Andrews Hour released on DVD and shown on television in your area, please contact:  dan.gopal@itv.com  
and let your voices heard!
Be sure to ask for the release of the music on CD as well!

Thank you!

Friday, March 22, 2013

Episode 22 with Guests Carol Lawrence and Steve Lawrence

On March 17th, 1973, the 22nd Episode of The Julie Andrews Hour aired on ABC.
1930s Set - Photo courtesty of Art Director,
Brian Bartholomew. Amazingly, most of the
show was performed on this set, including
the dances!
For this show, Julie’s old friend and former guest, Steve Lawrence, and Broadway star Carol Lawrence were the guests. Of course, Carol Lawrence, who was perhaps best known for her role as the first Maria in Broadway’s legendary show “West Side Story,” was also married to Julie’s former co-star, Robert Goulet.
The opening of the show revealed a sleek set, a curved platform by Brian Bartholomew. It is only later, as we learn the theme of the show that we realize this set actually says, “The 30s.”
Julie enters in fine spirits. Recently, the cast and crew of The Julie Andrews Hour had learned that the show had been cancelled by ABC. None of this, however, is evident in the star’s demeanor, and Julie wastes no time in telling us that this show will be celebrating the 1930s and to help her with this are her guests Carol Lawrence, Steve Lawrence, Alice Ghostly and Rich Little. Everyone enters, dressed beautifully, including Julie, who is wearing a gown woven with gold.
Now, without wasting a moment, the show is off to a flying start. An almost unrecognizable Rich Little appears on camera as a young Walter Cronkite. He will appear throughout the show, announcing each new year and informing us of some of the events which took place that year. Often, while he speaks, we are treated to newsreel footage and photos of these events.  
 Julie and Steve Lawrence perform the first musical number of the decade by singing Gershwin’s “Embraceable You.” The song has a great arrangement and which keeps us glued to the screen. It’s another great duet for a Julie Andrews’ Duets CD!
Glorious scene with Carol Lawrence and Garrett Lewis for
the dream segment of "Ten Cents a Dance."
Set and Photo courtesy of Art Director
Brian Bartholomew who won an Emmy for
his work on the show.
This musical number is followed by a superb one starring Carol Lawrence. In it, the lovely Miss Lawrence is stuck in a lowdown dive, singing “Ten Cents a Dance,” with a bunch of rough guys. Then, as she muses over hear dream man, we see her transformed into a golden girl, being waltzed and spun through the air by her dream man in the person of the handsome, wonderful Garrett Lewis.
The set by Brian Bartholomew glistens and, through the work of the camera, forms a glittering kaleidoscope effect. The dance is beautifully choreographed by Tony Charmoli, the direction by Bill Davis, camera work and editing, and brilliant performance—both singing and dancing—by Miss Lawrence, all makes for a glorious musical number. This is one of those moments on The Julie Andrews Hour where it is amazing to realize it came together in a few days, rather than the weeks it would take to create on film or on Broadway.
The year 1931 brings some comedy with the recreation of a film series that was born that year—Charlie Chan.  In the scene, Steve Lawrence plays Charlie Chan and Rich Little plays Number One Son. Their solving a murder scene includes a maid, chauffer, gardener, cook and butler and it’s quite funny.
The year 1932 introduces us to radio debut of crooner Bing Crosby, ablely played by Steve Lawrence. Following Steve, we discover Julie, in a lovely 1930s dress, singing “I’m Getting Sentimental Over You.” Standing on a moving turntable stage, she is surrounded by four trombone players. The scene is quite striking.
Steve Lawrence, singing “Eydie Was a Lady,” appears next.  The set is made up of nine high-backed armchairs, oddly spaced, facing away from the camera. Steve and the Tony Charmoli Dancers sing and dance the song around these chairs. At the end, all the fellows sit in their chars. When Steve peeks around the corner of his high-backed chair, we also see that a woman’s legs hanging over the side!
1933 Introduces us to Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the new president of the United States and his theme. In an old, rarely seen newsreel, he asks his little daughter to announce that theme, “Happy Days Are Here Again!”
Carol Lawrence and Julie Andrews sing “Heatwave” for us, barefoot and dressed as tropical gals with bandanas on their heads.
When we reach 1934, we learn that this year was the birth year for Walt Disney’s Donald Duck. It was also the birth year for one of the world’s favorite comic strip girls, Little Orphan Annie. Alice Ghostly plays the role to a “T,” singing the song, “Little Orphan Annie.” She is really cute in the role. A wonderful Annie!
We also learn about Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde with Rich Little taking us through the transformation, first  as a sort of Richard Burton Dr. Jekyll and then as Ed Sullivan transforming into Jack Parr and then into Richard Nixon. We can hear a great deal of laughter in the studio as Little performs this scene and, indeed, he is the master of his craft here.
The year 1934 is rounded out in a lovely way as Julie and Carol, seated in a vintage car, wearing old fashioned hats, sing “You Ought to Be in Pictures” to their driver, Rich Little. Rich, of course, proceeds to portray a variety of personalities, from Clark Gable to Cary Grant.
The next year, 1935, is introduced with a rare film clip of W.C. Fields showing off his muscles and his ability to hang by his nose (obviously a fake).
In a wild and funny take on this year, Julie, Carol and Steve seated onstage before the band. Rich Little plays a radio Master of Ceremonies who is conducting a sort of talent contest. Each person is called up to perform and only gets a few seconds to sing. As the show goes on, their time decreases, so they all end up running up, only to be replaced by the next person after a few notes. At one point, Julie does a tap dance, while Rich holding the long, old-fashioned mic on a pole down to the ground to catch her taps. When Steve Lawrence runs up for his few seconds of song, in order to sing in the mic, which Rich still has down on the floor, Steve lies on the floor. It’s a clever move and you have to see it to catch the full humor of the moment.
Carol Lawrence sings a great few bars of “I Feel A Song Coming On,” a hit song of the 1930s which Judy Garland later revived in the 1960s. Steve Lawrence and Julie Andrews also sing a wonderful duet with Begin the Beguine. Nelson Riddle is conducting the band in the background, and the sound is great!
The introduction of 1936 brings some interesting information. It was this year that Life magazine first appear on the news stands. This was also the year that Edward the VIII of England abdicated the throne. Along with that, entertainment introduced the Jitterbug, and big bands, including Benny Goodman.
The scene opens with a lot of dancers doing the Jitterbug. When the dancers part, they reveal Carol Lawrence dancing with a male dancer who proceeds to lift her up over his head, swing her between his legs. While the pair appear to be having a good time, it’s interesting to realize just how rough this dance is. At one point, two fellows swing Miss Lawrence between them, then over one of the men’s shoulders, and around to the floor, where she lands on her knees. It’s quite a spectacular move.
From there, the group moves on to the Lambath Walk, an English dance of the period. This dance includes all the stars of the show: Julie, Carol, Steve, Rich Little and Alice Ghostley. It’s quite lively, and Julie throws herself into with extra zest.
From there, the cast move on to the Dipsey Doodle, which includes some neat moves and a line dance, which is just as energetic as the latter. It’s also as if we’ve happened in on a great a great party. Comparing these dances to the dances of today, it’s clear that the people of the 30s did a whole lot more jumping, skipping, intricate stepping and flying through the air than people do now. They must have been in really great shape!
For the year 1937, we find Julie, dressed in a simple plaid dress, leaning against a piano, watching Steve, with a hat on his head, working away at writing a song. It’s soon clear that this pair is none other than Andy Hardy and Betsy Booth, two characters originally played by none other than Mickey Rooney and Judy Garland.
In this scene, Julie and Steve capture that wonderful, wistful innocence of love. While Steve -Andy works away at the piano, Julie, as Betsy, gives suggestions as to which words might better fit the notes, and we soon recognize it as the song, “I Like New York in June.” Meanwhile, after all her help, the rather insensitive Andy tells Betsy, “Stop bothering me. I’ve got to write this song.” It’s funny, but touching as we know how, despite his ego, Betsy loves him. With that, Julie/Betsy quietly begins to sing “Where or When.” This scene only serves to remind us of what a superb actress Julie Andrews really is.
With 1938, Rich Little introduces us to Orson Welles and the fact that Mr. Welles once, for a few hours, set the states in a tizzy by convincing his radio listeners that the Martians had indeed landed in America.
1938 was also the year that The Society for the Preservation and Encouragement of Barbershop Quartet Singing in America was founded. In the next scene, Alice Ghostley, Carol Lawrence and Julie Andrews along with Steve Lawrence, appear as part of a Barbershop Quartet. All are dressed in suits with straw boaters and sporting mustaches. The singing is obviously dubbed with male voices, Julie’s being the lowest and Steve’s being the highest. This number, although silly, and with a good laugh track, remains extremely funny. It’s difficult not to laugh when Julie appears to sing the deep, low notes and Steve the high! Alice Ghostley and Carol Lawrence elicit laughs as well.
The year 1939 was one of great films and great books. This year, The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck won the Pulitzer Prize. To close out the 1930s decade, the most famous scene from the film is portrayed. Alice Ghostley plays Mama with great depth and Rich Little, plays Henry Fonda as Jedd.  It’s a beautiful, classic moment recreated from a great film.
Following this scene of great seriousness, Julie Andrews appears and tells us that in September of 1939, the war began in England. As the camera pulls back, we see that she is standing before a large British flag. She proceeds to sing “There’ll Always Be an England.” This song, sung with great love and feeling, is among the finest moments in the series.
After a commercial, Episode 22 returns to find Julie, Steve and Carol, wearing contemporary, casual clothing. Speaking of all the wonderful songs from the 30s that they didn’t get to sing, Julie suggests that they fill the time left with these songs. The medley that follows is wonderful, relaxed and fun. Steve goes from one woman to the other for a while, until finally, he and Carol Lawrence, singing a love song, get lost in each other. Julie, finding herself out, finally hauls off and hits Steve. In a comic bit, he seems quite surprised and holds his arm as if she’s really hit him a little too hard. (Maybe she had!)
The show closes with the cast singing, “Goodnight, Sweetheart.” Steve calls out, “Goodnight, Eydie,” followed by Carol saying, “Goodnight, Bobby” and, finally, Julie saying, “Goodnight, Blake.”
It’s a sweet and happy ending.
(c) Michelle Russell


To learn more about Broadway star Carol Lawrence, please visit:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carol_Lawrence

All photos used for entertainment purposes only.

Please let your voices be heard: Send your requests to dan.gopal@itv.com

asking that ITV release The Julie Andrews Hour on DVD and show it television stations in the UK, US and any other country where you’d like to see it.
If you prefer, you may look up ITV in London or Los Angeles, and send a letter there.



For more information on this blog and a complete list of subjects with links back to this site, please visit: http://www.JulieAndrewsHour1972.com

Note: Unfortunately, due to computer problems I have had difficulties accessing this site. Photos will be added later.

Friday, March 15, 2013

1973 - The Sound of Music Reunion Benefit

At last, March 14th had arrived. Tonight The Sound of Music would return to the movie screen, but more importantly, Vivian and I were excited because we were finally going to see Julie in-person again.
The week between the taping of the last show and benefit had been busy with calls going back and forth between Vivian and I. We both hoped Patty and Kelly would somehow miss the information on this showing and wouldn’t be there. They had already caused enough trouble. Meanwhile, it was agreed that Vivian’s mother would pick me up and drive Vivian and I to the theater. Vivian said she was going to wear a long dress. I also had a fancy dress my mother had bought me for my high school father-daughter dance. It had been full length, but we’d cut it down so that I could wear it more often. It was my favorite dress.

Standing in the garden of International House

Two nights before The Sound of Music benefit, I had gone to see Liza Minnelli at the Los Angeles Music Center. She was performing for a benefit and it was her 27th birthday. Although I hoped to meet Liza this night, it wasn’t a good time for that. I did get to see her handsome fiancĂ©, Desi Arnaz Jr, sitting front row center. At the end of the show, a huge cake was wheeled onto the stage and Liza got so excited when she saw it, she ran and jumped right into the arms of her music director, Jack French. The performance raised my spirits a great deal.
 On March 14th, I went to my job early and left early so that I could get ready for the evening. Already, it was warm in California and there was no need for a jacket or even a sweater. Before we left, I went out into the International House garden and had my picture taken.
Vivian and I were one of earliest people to arrive. We had no idea what to expect, but the red carpet was all laid out and as people arrived, they spoke about how excited they were that they were going to be seeing Julie. After a while, the band arrived and set up on the side of the entrance. Although we wanted to stay outside to watch the entertainment and see Julie arrive, the theater personnel made an announcement that everyone with tickets had to go inside to their seats right away. Our seats were upstairs, and we didn’t want to miss anything, so we went up and hung out on the stairs, waiting to see what was going to happen.
Julie Andrews arriving to The Sound of Music benefit
that April 14th, 1973 in Beverly Hills
A friend of mine apparently was given a copy of this photo
by a woman who was friends with Blake Edwards' parents.
I have no idea who owns the copyright.
All of a sudden, we heard someone say, “I see her!”  Hearing that, we came back part-way down the stairs, which were to the side of the entrance doors. It was then that we saw Kelly and Patty. We had to work really hard to avoid them, but we did. Then, we saw Julie come into the lobby. She was surrounded by a crowd.
 I had brought my camera that night, so, of course, I took it out. The thing was, I couldn’t see very well without my glasses, especially not in the dimly lit lobby. Meanwhile, I wanted to look good, so I didn’t put my glasses on, which became a real handicap.
While I was standing, looking out into the crowd, I suddenly felt Vivian tugging at my sleeve.
“Michelle, Michelle,” she said, “she’s right there,”
When I looked to where she was pointing it was true. Julie was passing just below us. As she entered the lobby, she was surrounded by a crowd of people. They were not pushing, but standing very close around her. At that moment, I snapped my first picture, and as the flash went off, Julie looked up at me. I wondered if she recognized me. Then, she passed us and went into the manager’s office. A moment later we heard someone say,
“She talked to me!”
At that moment, I saw Patty and Kelly looking up at Vivian. I turned the other way, and looked over the railing with my back to them, so they wouldn’t see my face.
Turning to me, Vivian said, “Let’s wait ‘til Julie comes out again.”
We were aware that they were keeping Julie in the manager’s office, so she wouldn’t get mobbed by all the fans. We knew the children from the film were there also, though, of course, they were about 9 years older than they’d been in the film, but the place was so packed, I never saw any of them.
After a while, most of the people who had been standing in the lobby had gone to their seats, so Vivian and I came down and walked by the door of the manager’s office. As we passed, I heard Julie’s laugh. Now, not wanting to appear too pushy, we went back and waited on the stairs for her to come out.

Two of my poor photos - Julie coming out of the manager's office,
and Julie going into the theater. Unfortunately, my scanner
is broken or they would be a little clearer.
 Earlier, when I tried to take a photo one of my flash bulbs had stuck, and the next one had not gone off at all. (In the 1970s, many people had little instamatic cameras that required flash bulbs when you took a photo inside. Mine took square cubes with a flash bulb on each of the four sides. The cube turned automatically when you took a picture and when it was done, you had to take that cube off and put another on. There was never guarantee, though, that every flash would work. ) Now, as I waited for Julie to come out, I was very anxious about the flashbulbs. It mattered a lot to me that I take a photo of her.
 A short while later, Julie came out and walked by like a queen. Although I could not see well in the dim light, I took several pictures, and I was the only person taking pictures.
“Why don’t you come down here and take your picture,” said one of the men standing nearby.
Already, it had seemed to me that Julie was moving rather slowly. I don’t know if that was because she recognized Vivian and I or was just taking her time. After the man said that, it seemed as if Julie stopped for a moment before the door, waiting to see if I would come down. Yet, as I said before, because I wasn’t wearing my glasses, I couldn’t see the expression on her face and I was afraid to be that bold, afraid she might be displeased. Then, seeing that I wasn’t coming down, Julie turned and went into the theater.
Once she was gone, I felt so sad and upset that I had not moved to speak to her or take her picture. As always, I was too slow and indecisive. I don’t know what Vivian was doing at the time.
Now that Julie had gone to her seat, Vivian and I went up the stairs to ours, where were at the front of the balcony. Julie and the children were sitting under the balcony, as we later learned, the next to last row, so we couldn’t see them. Interestingly, as we were going up stairs, I bumped into Elizabeth, the English actress. I was quite surprised to see her.
Once we sat down, they had some singers up onstage and then three men came out and played some long horns like the Austrian horns the puppets have in “The Lonely Goatherd.”
Meanwhile, Vivian and I were speculating on whether or not Julie would stay for the entire movie.  We thought that at any moment someone would come onstage and introduce Julie and the children. That was how they had done things at the premiere of “Young Winston” the only premiere I’d been to before that.  But after a short time, the lights went out and the film began. We both were very surprised and disappointed that Julie and the children had not been brought up on stage. What was the point of having them there if everyone didn’t get to see them?
 We were also disappointed that they had changed the original seating plans. We had been told that Julie and the children would sit in the balcony, where they had put us. Instead, they were sitting in the second to last row downstairs. This was probably because it was easier for them, especially Julie, to get in and out and avoid the crowd.
Then, as the movie started, at site of the first cliff, someone ---it sounded like Julie---said something in a voice we could hear and then, (very definitely Julie) laughed!
As each name appeared on the screen, the entire audience applauded. They also applauded after each musical number. It was so amazing and exciting to have Julie and the children there in the audience, enjoying the film with us. (By now the youngest girl was about 14 or 15.)
Each time one of the “children” saw themselves on the screen, there was a laugh. The biggest laugh came during the dinner table scene, when they all began to cry after Maria says how nice it was for them to welcome her so warmly. It was funny to hear all these voices downstairs laughing so hard and to know it was them!
Watching the move this time seemed completely different to me. I wrote in my diary at the time,
“I guess that’s because I know Julie now.”
I was also more aware of the different scenes, rather than seeing the film as one flowing piece of work.
When intermission came, Vivian and I went downstairs and looked around. When we saw the light under the manager’s office door, we said,
“Julie is still here with us.” We both felt very relieved about that.
A lot of people were standing near the door, hoping to see her, while others came in and out.
By the time intermission was over, I had decided I was not going to try to take any more pictures of Julie. I didn’t want to be annoying, flashing in her eyes. I’d taken enough. Now, although most of the people in the lobby had returned to their seats, a few waited near the door to see her. Just as I was telling Vivian I wished I had the courage to talk to Julie, she came out the manager’s office and walked right by me, not three feet away! It was then that I realized she was wearing the same dress she had worn on The Julie Andrews Hour when Maria von Trapp was a guest on the show. This time, however, Julie walked by very quickly.  It seemed strange to me to see her go back and forth from that little office, as a hidden presence; we knew she was there, but couldn’t see her. We were so used to seeing her walking around the studio and sitting in her chair, but we were glad to be around her again, even for this little time.

My photo on top and
Vivian's below. Again, not
clear as my scanner died, but
it gives you an idea of the
large poster on the theatre
walland a little what we
looked like.
 As Vivian and I went back upstairs to our seats, I felt determined to go downstairs before the end of the movie and talk to Julie. I needed to talk to her. I’d spent nearly 100 hours with her and never spoken a word.  But when I told Vivian about my idea, she was sharply against it and somehow changed my mind, telling me it wasn’t a good idea, it wasn’t the right time. Sadly, by the time we came downstairs at the end of the movie (just as they were climbing the Alps), Julie was gone.
While we were downstairs, we met a girl who told us that she had spoken to Duane Chase (the youngest boy). He had told her that Julie would get squashed if they didn’t keep her away from people.
Then, with the movie was over, Vivian and I went outside and took each other’s pictures in front of the big movie poster.
While we were waiting for Vivian’s mother to arrive and take us home, we spoke briefly to Kelly and Patty. We also spoke to Elizabeth who told us that during the film she’d stood in the back so that she could watch Julie’s reactions as she watched various scenes in The Sound of Music. Vivian was appalled, and so was I.
Leaving the show, I didn’t feel too sad about not speaking to Julie, but the next day it really hit me. When would I ever see her again? Still, I couldn’t wait to get the photos I’d taken. There is something about having your own photo, but, of course, they didn’t come out too good.
(c) Michelle Russell

Coming soon: The 22nd Episode of The Julie Andrews Hour with Guests Carol Lawrence and Steve Lawrence.

All photos here for Entertainment Purposes only!

Please see the previous blog for information on how to join our campaign to see The Julie Andrews Hour released on DVD and music on CD.

For more information on this blog, please visit: http://www.JulieAndrewsHour1972.com

NOTE: Unfortunately, due to the fact my internet connection is not working well I was unable to upload some of the photos I planned to show here or to post this blog exactly on the date these events occurred as planned.

Best wishes!

Friday, March 8, 2013

Last Day at ABC


On March 7th, when I called Julie’s fan mail secretary, Claire Priest, to find out whether I could attend the taping for the final show, she told me there would be “no audience” for the last show.  After that I called Vivian, who told me she was sending Julie yellow roses and daisies in a white vase for the last show. She also wrote Julie a card, saying she was sorry she could not be there. She had spoken to Carol who told her “no audience.”

The next day, I decided to try again on my own. First, I spoke to the Unit Manager, John Monarch, who also said, “no audience, talk to Carol.”

I had to wait a long time until Carol, the producer's secretary, picked up. In the background, I could hear the bustle of changing sets. In response to my question as to whether I could come to the taping, Carol said, “No. Nobody’s coming. Definitely, no!”

Then, after a moment, she said, 

“Say, who are you anyway? Are you one of the girls who has been sneaking onto the closed sets?”

Suddenly, it dawned on me. Patty and Kelly had been sneaking into the studio all this time, while Vivian and I behaved ourselves and sat at home. And, if there ever was a chance that we might have been let back in to see a show, eveb, the last show, THEY had ruined that chances. Oh, I was angry!

“No, I haven’t been to the studio for a month now,” I said.

“Oh well,” responded Carol, “It’s no!” 

As I hung up, I was so hurt by her response, I said to myself, “I never wanted to speak to her again,” and I promised myself I wouldn’t. Men can be charming about their no’s, but women hurt.

Friday, when I called the studio again, I got the strangest operator. She said,
“We’re going through. Here we go! Coming in, coming in. Heeerrrre we come!” as if she was taking me on a space ship or something.

***

I was late to my singing lesson. It was raining, and as I walked up the hill, a man in a gold Cadillac offered me a ride, so I accepted. 

Mr. Loring asked me how things at the studio were and I told him I was angry because some people snuck into the show when they weren't supposed to be there, but I was not allowed. My teacher said he would call the ticket office for me, but that it would do no good.

After that, we worked on “Say a Prayer for Me Tonight.” Then, I went over all my songs, putting them on tape. They sounded better when I followed my instinct. The songs where I sang as I listened to myself didn't, I discovered, sound as good.

At the end of my lession, Mr. Loring said, 
"So is Julie Andrews your favorite singer?"
 “No, Judy Garland is my favorite." 
After saying that, Mr. Loring asked if why I went to see Julie if she wasn’t my favorite singer.
"Because I like to feel part of the studio, and watching Julie makes me feel like I’m part of show business."
Of course, even though Julie was not my favorite singer, she was a close second. I felt bad when Mr. Loring said this, because I knew full-well that I had a tendency protect myself and hide my feelings. Mr. Loring told me I should not live my life in the success of others. “Someday soon, you will have your own success,” he told me.

After my lesson, I took the bus down to Wilshire Boulevard in Beverly Hill for The Sound of Music tickets. When I arrived at the theater, however, I found they didn’t have any tickets. The tickets were at the institute that bought them for the benefit, so I made arrangements to buy the tickets and was told a man would deliver them to me at my residence that night. Once I went back to International House, I called Vivian and asked her to come over and give me the money for her ticket.

The man with the tickets arrived before Vivian got there. He gave me two tickets for $6.00 each. He said he was going to leave some posters at my residence as well, in hopes that others would come to the benefit. He told me that so far few people had bought tickets. Yes, Julie would definitely be there, he assured me, as would all the children in the film. There would be red carpets and a band. He said he was putting us in the balcony. When I protested, he told me, “That’s where the celebrities will be sitting.”

Vivian arrived and stayed with me for half an hour. She showed me her autographed cook book and the Christmas card Julie had sent her. It was an art statue of mother and child on a red background, and was signed by Julie, Blake and family. Vivian also showed me Julie’s letter to her which thanked her for the jewelry “gift” and said what a “kind thing” it was for her to do.
***

The day had arrived. March 9th was the last day of taping for The Julie Andrews Hour. It would be a busy day for me.

I had tennis in the morning and after class all my muscles ached. After class, I had to take care of Julie’s going away present. I had gone through a pile of treasured, old, art postcards. They were special for their beauty and also for the fact that my grandmother had brought them back from Italy in 1922. The postcard I chose for Julie was of a small blond boy with blue eyes looking heavenward.

After school, I went to a store and found the loveliest wood frame with fine molding and gold leaf. The man in the shop cut a piece of glass for the frame and mounted the picture for me. It looked so lovely; like a miniature museum piece, just the way I had hoped it would look. I kept looking at the framed picture while I was riding the bus. A lady sitting next to me saw it and said, “That is a lovely present for whoever is getting it.” I didn’t say anything.

Meanwhile, I heard two ladies behind me on the bus talking. It seemed they were housekeepers, and had once worked together. The one said,
“How are the Presleys?”
“They’re getting divorced, said the other. “Priscilla has moved out and Elvis is in the house alone.” Then, they went on to talk about the Presley’s little girl. How strange to hear this news before it was released, and to hear it on a bus!

I spoke to Vivian about five times this day. She didn’t know if she was going to the studio that night or not. Meanwhile, I asked my roommate, Lynn if she would wrap Julie’s present for me and she did, all the while, saying,  
“You mean I’m really wrapping this for Julie Andrews?”

I had bought a card of purple hyacinths with lilies of the valley and lilacs on the front. I wrote Julie a single sentence, thanking her for the priviledge of being in the studio and for being able to hear her sing. I addressed the card: “To Julie Edwards.”
Then, I called John Monarch once more in hope that somehow I might be invited in. 

‘No go.’ He told me. I must talk to Carol. Julie was going to have a big party that night and security guards would be everywhere.

I was desperate. How would I get Julie’s present to her? Finally, I had a brainstorm. Bill, the page I knew, could take the present in for me. I called the studio again and had a long wait while they called him to the phone. Strangely, Bill didn’t seem to remember me, but he said he’d meet me at the front gate and deliver Julie’s present to her.  

After that, I called Vivian. She said she’d had a fight with her mother about coming to Hollywood. Her mother didn’t want to bring her over, saying she couldn’t get in anyway and she wasn’t going to leave Vivian outside the studio at night or have her get into trouble.

After that, I hurried over to ABC. On arrival, I asked the guard to call 1468 and ask the page, Bill S., to come down to the gate. The guard had a list of names and checked each person off as they arrived. While I was standing there, Mrs. Ian Frazier came through the gate.

One of the pages came up to the gate, wearing a red rosebud in his button hole. After he told them he was leaving, another page said,

“Julie will miss you.” He laughed.

Just then, Bill and another page came up to the gate guardhouse. When the other page saw me, he said, “You had a note for Rich Little before and you were really cold.”
“Oh!” I said, so surprised.  “I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to be cold. I was just so nervous.”

Then, I walked with the two pages, one on either side of me. We walked practically all the way to the studio.
“You will be sure Julie gets this won’t you? “ I asked, as I handed the present to Bill.
“Oh yes, Julie will really appreciate it. You came all this way. You’re such a devoted fan.”

Thinking of Patty and Kelly, I couldn’t help cringing a little at the word “fan.” In fact, after my experience at The Julie Andrews Hour, I never again wanted to be considered a ‘fan’ again. “Admirer” was the word I preferred.

“Julie’s having a party for everyone,” the pages told me, “A really big party. About three hundred people will be here, including the wives and children of the crew.
Oh gosh,” I said, which was a very Julie thing to say.

Before the two guys left, I handed them my pen pal, Dennis’, letter.

“If you want, come to any show at ABC and I’ll give you front row seats. And if this show is renewed (meaning Julie’s), you’ll be the first to know,” Bill told me. I guess he didn’t know it was cancelled.

It was over now, and I ran all the way back home, arriving there in about 15 minutes. When I got back, “Liza with a Z” was on television. It was a good distraction for me.

***

So, the show was over. I had tried me best, but I had not been allowed back in the studio. Still, I had my memories.

Coming Next: ReunionThe Sound of Music
If you think The Julie Andrews Hour should be released for the public on DVD, along with music releases of Julie and her guests, please e-mail a polite request: dan.gopal@itv.com
If you prefer, you may look up ITV in London or Los Angeles, and send a letter there.
To see a complete list of all blogs with a link back to this site,

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Missing Julie


     The weekend arrived and I went home to West Covina, taking my new album “The World of Julie Andrews” with me. “It is beautiful, funny, witty, silly and hauntingly gorgeous,” I wrote in my diary. I was especially in love with the song “Oh, Dear, What Can the Matter Be.” I knew it as a sort of children’s song, but Julie’s rendition took it to a whole new level.
That Saturday evening, February 25th, 1973, Mother Virginia Mary, an old friend of my late grandmother, was invited to dinner. She and my grandmother had met around the time my grandmother founded The San Marino Players. At that time, Virginia worked for the Hollywood Reporter and most of her days then were spent mingling with Hollywood movie stars. This was in the 1940s. In fact, Virginia always called my grandmother “Billie” because my grandmother reminded her of Billie Burke.

I was a teenager when I first met this special family friend. My grandmother took me to the Mayfield Convent in Pasadena, where Mother Virginia was visiting. While we waited for her to arrive, we went into the convent chapel. As we knelt to pray, my grandmother said,
“Do you see the diamond earrings on the statue of the Christ Child?”  
I did.
“Those are the earrings Cary Grant gave Mother Virginia Mary before she joined the convent.”
I couldn’t help staring. How amazing that the Christ Child was wearing them.

It seems Mother Virginia Mary had long wanted to be a nun, but to please her mother, she waited, waited until her mother passed away. Then, after joining the convent, of course, all her worldly goods, including her jewelry was given to the church. But it seems the nuns had a soft spot for Cary Grant, so his gift went to the Christ Child.

Mother Virginia Mary was a lively woman, who loved to laugh. She was loads of fun to be with. And it seems her life as a nun was more even more exciting than her life as a Hollywood reporter. She lived all over the world, including Rome. She also worked as a missionary in the Belgium Congo, where, as she told us, she had some wild adventures.

This Saturday was Mother Virgina Mary's birthday and my mother had bought a cake for her. Later, while we were talking, she asked me what I was studying and I told her  "singing and acting." “That’s wonderful,” she said, in a very excited way.
My mother, who was not so pleased, turned to her and said,
“I wish she’d study something else.”
Although my mother repeated this several times during the conversation, looking to Mother Virginia Mary as if she hoped she’d get some back-up, but she got none.

When it was time for Mommy to take her back to the convent, Mother Virginia Mary wanted me to ride along with them. “I’m afraid your mother will be lonely on the long ride home,” she said.

Meanwhile, a re-run of the first Julie Andrews Hour episode was on television. I had long wanted to see it again, and I was feeling "homesick" for Julie. I found myself clinging to her image on the screen, knowing that that was all I had left of everything I had experienced in the last months; I would not see her again.
  
Because I didn’t appear to want to go with them, my mother and Mother Virginia Mary went out the front door to get into the car, but my mother’s mother-in-law, Mrs. Prefontaine, who was visiting, got mad at me and said, “You should have gone with your mother,” so I ran out the front door, saying, “I’m going! I’m going!”

Then, just before I closed the door behind me,  I turned back to catch one last glimpse of Julie on the television. She was singing, “If Ever I Would Leave You,” and my eyes filled with tears.  I cried softly all the way to Pasadena, half ashamed and half glad…

February 26th, Monday

I must never be called “dead,” “dull,” or “boring” ever again! Mr. Martin said my pantomime was good but because I was doing two things at once, he said it wasn’t good and he gave me “D!” He did, however, stop and help me with the pantomime while I was on stage.

Oh, I want to see Julie again. Just the person—beautiful, silly, swearing, serious, working hard— Julie, NOT “Miss Andrews” as Lynn calls her. I know I should call her “Miss Andrews.” It’s improper for me to say “Julie,” but that’s who she is to me.

***
On Tuesday, February 27th I learned that the show had been cancelled. At that point, it didn’t matter too much to my plans. I didn’t think I’d ever be back at the studio, but I was sorry for Julie. The show was so splendid, it deserved to be loved. Still, I knew she would move on to do other things, as would I.

That night I spoke to Vivian for a long time. Although Julie was working this week, when Vivian spoke to Carol, Nick Vanoff’s secretary, she said it was going to be a closed set. Then she added, 

“I hope for your sake there is an audience on the last show.”  
Yes, there was only one more show for them to tape.

Kelly was the one who told Vivian the show had been cancelled, and she said she had learned it from Carol. Vivian told me that Kelly was very upset. Then, she told me two funny stories Julie had recounted on The David Frost Show.

The first story took place when Emma was quite small, just after Mary Poppins came out. Julie had taken Emma shopping in the toy department of a store and there was a huge Mary Poppins doll for sale.
“Look! Look!” said Emma, “There’s my mummy!”
“Oh isn’t that funny,” said a lady standing nearby. “She thinks Mary Poppins is her mother!”

Another time Julie was out with Emma and this time Emma was really misbehaving so Julie said,
“Emma, if you don’t stop misbehaving, I’m going to smack your bottom.”
Emma kept on, so Julie patted her on the behind. Emma began screaming and wouldn’t stop. Just then, someone, seeing Julie with Emma, said,
“Oh look! There’s Mary Poppins!”

When I told Vivian I had borrowed a copy of Julie’s book, “Mandy” from the public library, she told me how it came to be written, which explained the lovely dedication, “For Jenny because I promised.”

Vivian and I also talked about how much we miss Julie, and about why we thought we were put out. Sometimes now I felt as if Vivian was my sister. She was the only person who could understand, even a little, how I felt. We had not seen Julie for almost a month and rather than feeling better about the whole thing, we actually felt worse. That night, I wrote in my diary, “We both have an unexplainable sorrow in our hearts because Julie is leaving.”


February 28th, Wednesday

In the afternoon, I spoke to Claire Priest. Then, I called John Monarch, the Unit Manager at ABC, and introduced myself. I asked if I could get into the studio for the last show, even if there was no audience. He told me to call back next week. I also asked him if he knew what NARM was (something my new pen pal had asked about, but he said no.

Then, because I wanted to find out where Liza (Minnelli) was playing that night, I called Kelly and asked if she had Elizabeth’s phone number.  As it happened, Elizabeth was right there in Kelly’s apartment, so she put her on the phone with me.

Elizabeth seemed very happy to speak to me. Although she didn’t know about Liza’s performance, we talked a bit. Then, she asked me what I thought was a very strange question:
“I haven’t seen you lately on the closed sets, have I?”

Well, of course, I hadn’t been there. Only later, would I realize the meaning fo this question.

Elizabeth then told me that she had spent three days with Sammy Davis Jr and Julie, and she couldn’t believe how well they worked together. When they were working, Sammy said, “Come on, Soul Sister!” to Julie. After telling me this, Elizabeth said goodbye.

March 1st, Thursday

I was so sad at my singing lesson today that Mr. Loring asked me what was wrong and I ended up telling him about the situation at the studio.  I don’t know why. I wonder if he understood. After I told him my story, he said he had worked with Julie, adding, “She can be temperamental.”

Well, I had never seen Julie behave in a way that could be considered tempermental. A lot of other stars might have thrown fits or pulled rank on things that Julie simply went along with, so I decided that Mr. Loring must be trying to make me feel better about myself. I let him and thought no more about his comment.

“Tony Charmoli’s a friend of mine,” he said. “Tony’s always been nice to you, hasn’t he?”
“Yes,” I replied. I had only spoken to Tony a couple of times, once on the telephone by accident, but I knew he was a sweet man.

After our conversation, Mr. Loring made a call and ordered two pieces of sheet music for me: “From This Moment On” and “Say a Prayer for Me Tonight,” the song Julie had sung on the show with Angela Lansbury. I was so happy I was going to learn to sing it.

In the afternoon, I called ABC just to make sure there was not going to be an audience for the taping that night.
“Julie Andrews Hour, please.”  Mine is now a familiar voice there.
I was transferred and the phone rang a long while. Then a voice said,
“Stage 8.”
“Is there a closed set?
“Not really completely, but no audience” said a smooth man’s voice.
“This isn’t the office?”
“No, the stage.”
I was embarrassed. 
“Oh, I’m so sorry. The girl gave me the wrong place.”

That night, my roommate, Lynn, and I stayed in our room, studying. Lynn had her radio on and when they played, “Oh, Babe,” one of the top hits at that time, I remembered how Thog sang it to Julie and I started to cry. The next song was Harry Belafonte singing “Suzanne,” and a short time after that, I heard a voice talking that sounded strangely familiar.
“Who is that?” I asked Lynn.
“Julie Andrews,” said Lynn as if I were crazy not to recognize her voice.
But Julie's voice had become so familiar to me in-person, I simply couldn’t process the idea that she was on the radio, being heard by thousands or millions of people.

After that, they played,” Vincente,” the song Julie had sung so beautifully on the show with Harry Belafonte and Sivuica.  It was all too much for me. As I wrote at the time,
“Inside I keep saying, “Julie don’t go away, please don’t go!” It’s as if she’s like all the other people in my life that I’ve loved and lost. The dearest people have disappeared forever. But I have to realize Julie is famous. I can’t loose track of her, but I know she must go away, for her future, and for mine. I must stop sitting in the studio dreaming.
It’s been good, oh, so good to see how they work, joke, what is expected and how things go. I have learned so many things, and I have also learned how to make new friends (something so difficult for me), but now it’s my turn. I’ve got to work.”

March 3rd, Saturday

Julie’s show with Sammy Davis was a Wow! Or as Julie would say, “Super!” Julie really goofed off with Sammy. She’s never been so “free and easy.” Maybe she’s learning what she said she hadn’t –to make singing easy… But I felt so left out that I was not been there for any part of the taping or the fun. The medley about spring made me cry.

I also saw Sharri on the show! Julie and Sammy did a modern, I mean really wild, group of songs. You’ve never seen Julie dressed like she was for this. No one would believe it. Although I didn’t think it suited her, a new side of her is being shown. At the end of the show, she looked so terribly happy. I guess it was a good week with Sammy.

Over the weekend, Mommy and I had a long conversation and I tried to explain my feelings about the show and Julie, but it was impossible.

***

Looking back, it meant so much to be to be around someone who sang the music I loved and who understood what it was to perform in this way. I knew I couldn’t be friends with Julie, but I wanted so much to be around someone who was simpatico to this, who understood. The ending had really broken my heart.

March 4th, Sunday

Returning to Hollywood, I found a letter from my new Julie Andrews fan pen pal, Dennis. He also sent me a letter to give to Julie, as I had promised to do. Now I had an excuse to go to the studio on the night of the final show. I also got a brainstorm about what I was going give Julie as a going away present.

***
On Monday, March 5th, I was reading the Los Angeles Sunday Times Calendar section, when something caught my eye. There was a big advertisement for a benefit showing of The Sound of Music. It said that Julie and the children from the film would all be there.  I called the number and they told me the seats would be $5 and $10. I was so thrilled, I could afford to go. I was going to see Julie again, and once again, life seemed happy.


Coming Next: A Final Studio Visit


If you think The Julie Andrews Hour should be released for the public on DVD, along with music releases of Julie and her guests, please e-mail a polite request: dan.gopal@itv.com

If you prefer, you may look up ITV in London or Los Angeles, and send a letter there. 


ALL photos show here are for entertainment purposes only.