Photos By Svetlana Krapivina
Hollywood, CA (The Hollywood Times) 3/15 – 15 – THT scored a modest success by multiplying the audience for “Hollywood and Broadway” by a factor of two. On the evening of Saturday, March 14th this reporter’s review of the play in THT brought two friends to the Hudson Guild Theatre located at 6539 Santa Monica Boulevard for a repeat performance.
Model/actress Kelley Nicole Whilden, one of the aforementioned friends, is busy promoting her jewelry line and scoring Instagram hits from the likes of Sonia Kashuk. This week New York Color Cosmetics also faved her Twitter tweets when she did a review of their lipsticks on YouTube. The two of us are full of plans for future International Women’s Day events centered upon the fashion and beauty industries.
Kelley and her friend kindly drove in from Sherman Oaks to soak in the wit and spirit of “Hollywood and Broadway.” Kelley remembered actress Olivia Choate, who played Tallulah Bankhead, from work they both did on the show “I Didn’t Know I Was Pregnant.” Like most other viewers Kelley was full of praise for Olivia’s brilliant star turn as Bankhead.
Voice husky and raw from too many cigarettes and “tiny triples” of gin, Bankhead is “insulting, belligerent, rough and tough” but also someone to admire for her force of personality and true passion for the many entertainment genres at which she tried her hand. “NOBODY could be like ME!” Bankhead bawls. “Sometimes even I have trouble.”
Olivia Choate joined our group in street clothes after the play to chat about the production. Students of theater and cinema arts who had been seated in the audience commented upon the play’s accurate feel for the personalities involved and the elite yet unstable milieu of the times. Strong women like Bankhead were the only ones who could survive the many career changes brought about by the rapid expansion of mass communications. Former stage performers often moved to film, radio, and television, developing new audiences while discovering new talents.
While older viewers for a historical play like this are always there, “Hollywood and Broadway” is also likely to find younger fans who, like Kelley, are being pushed into new directions every day on the Internet. We hope the play continues to fill the house during the final week of its run at the Hudson Guild Theatre.