Fri., Apr. 6 and Sat., Apr. 7 at NoHo’s historic El Portal Theatre
Actress Adrienne Barbeau has created a show that presents fascinating tales from her incredibly diverse career. So, if you love storytelling at its best, straight from the person who lived the adventures, you don’t want to miss There Are Worse Things I Could Do: An Evening with Adrienne Barbeau 8pm Friday, April 6 and 8pm Saturday, April 7 at the historic El Portal Theatre.
“The memoir I wrote was called There Are Worse Things I Could Do, the title of the song I sang as the original Rizzo in Grease on Broadway,” she explained. She earned a Tony nomination for the role.
With more than 450 screen performances to her credit (Argo among them), she has also made her mark in Broadway musicals (Grease, Fiddler on the Roof) and recently the national tour of Pippin, TV movies and shows (Maude, Revenge, HBO’s Carnivàle), voice work in animated series (such as Catwoman in Batman) and video games. Barbeau is also the author of a comedic-thriller book series that started with Vampyres of Hollywood.
Barbeau, who has appeared in numerous horror and science fiction films, said she enjoys attending the sci-fi/horror conventions because “the fans are amazing and I love talking about being a ‘Scream Queen’ and working with John Carpenter and George Romero, thanks to my classic genre films The Fog, Creepshow, Escape from New York, and Swamp Thing, among others.”
About her early days, she says, “My first job started a week after high school. I went to Southeast Asia to entertain the armed forces for $7 a day. We were on the DMZ, and the enemy opened fire. It was an awakening for an 18-year-old in 1963.”
“There are also many humorous stories from my life involving working for the mob, being the first go-go dancer in Manhattan, doing Grease, doing Maude, going off to Moscow to do a horror movie with 50 trained rats. I’ll talk about the early boyfriends, dating Burt Reynolds, and my two great marriages!”
She won’t be singing live “but I’ll have my album playing when I walk in. And I’ll show a recent clip of my Pippin performance, hanging upside down on a trapeze singing.”
Barbeau loves doing Q&A’s, “Because they’re such fun.” And that’s the format of the show—a lively, informal version of an actor’s studio presentation. “It’s an evening of me talking about my films, being part of the ground-breaking series Maude. At the end I’ll take questions from the audience. They always want to know what Bea Arthur was like. And I’m happy to answer almost anything. It always fascinates me to hear what people ask about my experiences.”
Barbeau’s personal life is not off limits, and she’s happy to reveal she had twins when she was 51. “My children are my greatest personal accomplishment. It just never crossed my mind that my twins would be in college when I was in my 70s,” reported the eternally super-hot lady.
Barbeau said, “My greatest professional accomplishment is that I have earned a living at something I absolutely love. I am very fortunate to have been a working actor my entire life. It’s a wonderful life.”
Brian Christopher Williams will act as moderator for the evening—he is a playwright and one of Barbeau’s closest friends. Together with film clips and still shots they hope to create a unique evening for El Portal audiences.
“There Are Worse Things I Could Do: An Evening with Adrienne Barbeau” is showcased Friday, April 6 at 8pm and Saturday, April 7 at 8pm at the historic El Portal Theatre located at 5269 Lankershim Blvd. in North Hollywood. For tickets go to ElPortalTheatre.com or call (818) 508-4200 or visit the El Portal Theatre box office.