CHRISTOPHER on the left.
As "Dracula" himself. This performance garnered CHRISTOPHER a Best Actor nomination.
I believe I mentioned, oh sometime ago, about my appearing in the first Musical Production on the Civil Rights Movement. The play was entitled, "Fly Blackbird." It was written by two UCLA professors; one white, one black. Two incredibly talented men, I might add.
I actually got into this show quite by accident. My friend, Ernie Tate, happened to mention my name, and the professors asked me to meet them at the College, between their classes. And since they needed at least 'one more white guy' in the cast, I got the part.
If you look at the photo, you will see GEORGE TAKEI in there. ALso, MIKKI GRANT, who wrote the song, "Itsy Bitsy Teeny Weeny, Yellow Polka Dot Bikini." And contributed to the Musical, "My Arm's Too Short to Box with God."
JACK CROWDER is there, as well. He changed his name to some African name that I don't recall right now. And, THELMA OLIVER, who appeared in "The Pawnbroker" with ROD STEIGER.
Janice Johnson is there, too. And you may recall that I upset the entire Industry, and The Academy, when I escorted Janice to the Academy Awards. I was evidently the first actor to ever bring a Black Girl on his arm.
The show went on to Broadway, but I chose to do my first Vegas show instead. Don't ask me why, I don't know. But, if it weren't for the Vegas show, I wouldn't have my son, Sean.
And, this is the show that finally got me a Stage Award. After being nominated three times in a row for Best Actor......I won this year for, Best Supporting Actor. Lots of fun memories about this production.
And recently, when I ran into MR. TAKEI.....I whisked by him, touched his arm and simply said, "Fly Blackbird." He was stunned, and gave me that big smile, and said, "Oh my God, of course. How great to see you again."
CHRISTOPHER'S first Vegas show. At The Dunes hotel in Las Vegas.
CHRISTOPHER is third from the right.
FRED ASTAIRE and HERMES PAN chose CHRISTOPHER to dance with BARRIE CHASE. In this show, CHRISTOPHER was billed (as he often was for dance and choreography roles) as RONNIE RIORDAN.
CHRISTOPHER played Carleton Fitzgerald and won the Best Supporting Actor award.
CHRISTOPHER played an evil character, Brandon, in "Rope." CHRISTOPHER won Best Actor for that role. CHRISTOPHER is pictured with actor GARY LAMB on the right.
LA Stage Production of "A Thousand Clowns." CHRISTOPHER played Albert, the Social Worker, and received a Best Supporting Actor nomination.
CHRISTOPHER directed this production in Ashland, Oregon. The play starred GEORGE CHAKIRIS. L to R: NEIL WESTON, GEORGE CHAKIRIS, CHRISTOPHER, SHIRLEY PATTON, and the wonderful WILLIAM COTTRELL.
In 1974, my friend, LEONARD GRANT, called me. He asked if we could meet for dinner, as he wanted to pick my brain. Seems he, and eight other investors were going to go in together and rent the old Factory Building in West Hollywood, and then turn it into a Disco. Only thing was; none of them knew anything about bars, restaurants, or the like. And.... I did!
The second nightclub. This one, we called 'Up.' Don't ask me why. That's me, sitting behind my desk; and part of my crew. They had gathered to present me with flowers and a gift. I did give jobs to many......that's for sure.
The Marquee for our opening night in the Entertainment Lounge. We ended up signing Alexis Smith. I was delighted; until I found out what a total Bitch she was. Such an ego. Also, rude to everyone.