Behind the Stage Door of the Hampton Playhouse - 33rd Season 1981
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This season featured the talents of Larry Storch (of F-TROOP fame) and the return of Kevin Tighe. Ken Olin went on to TV fame in FALCON CREST, HILL STREET BLUES, THIRTYSOMETHING and more recently in EZ STREETS.
BURLESQUE SCANDALS of 1981 was conceived by John Vari and Emil Sanzori, directed by Emil, and contained lots of old corny burlesque skits, some exciting musical bits and of course the two strippers...now a 'must' with Hampton audiences.
DEATHTRAP was a terrific end-of-season show and proved very popular. Kevin Tighe and Ken Olin were the two male leads with Marie Wallace, Dick Kennedy, and Mary Fogarty lending great support.
This season featured apprentice favorites Pat MacDonnell. Steve Witting, Renee Rogers, Joel Porter, Carol Reid, and Gillian Losa.
Frank O'Brien remembers... "I do remember one night in the opening skit of Burlesque, Frank Vohs forgetting his 'weenie' and leaving me on stage alone to return to the dressing room to get it. By the time he reentered, it felt like he had toured Newburyport. The time during Burlesque's 'Machine', I had to wear a cup because Frank wanted to drive a pole through my legs. Anything for a laugh, even my future progeny. I still have the lash marks from the long whipping sprays of his bouquet when we were Burlesque bathing suit beauties. He was pregnant. I looked under his dress and yelled 'its a boy' and got whacked. The first time we did Honeymoon Hotel I looked through the keyhole and he looked up my butt. I was appalled. But Alfred said no, its funny. I learned that nothing was too much for Hampton - the laugh was supreme. I adjusted and got them. My meeting and friendship with John Vari in L.A. led to my being asked to Hampton. Alfred asked him 'can he carry a show?' The first was 1981, I LOVE MY WIFE and BURLESQUE. They moved seats for the band and they happened to have been someone's season tickets. They would not be appeased by anything, not even free tickets. They wanted their seats replaced and the band put on stage or was it that the seats had been double sold? In any case who ever was in them was to be moved on stage or offstage but out of them. Alfred had to hide on the floor at the box office when they came back to scream and yell again."
Renee Rogers remembers...
"My second summer - 1981- as an apprentice, John and Al let Steve and me live in sin at the beachside housing owned by Betty Oates. Our room was on the second floor and had a sitting room and a shared balcony. Several Equity actors were annoyed with our cushy room. But we needed the space, since I had dragged all my crap from college to decorate our love nest."