Ralna Engish and Marvin Hamlisch backstage at the taping of the
2010 PBS TV special,
"Marvin Hamlisch Presents: The '70s, The Way We Were."
shocking and sad news to hear of the loss of a legend in music...Marvin
Hamlisch passed away yesterday, August 6th, after a short illness.
(Marvin Hamlisch won (3) Oscars, (4) Grammys, (4) Emmys, (1) Tony award and the
Pulitzer Prize. The only other person in history to win all 5 awards was Richard Rodgers.)
was a musical genius, composer, and a great
entertainer...he was one of a kind and he will be greatly missed.
Guy and I were fortunate to work with Marvin on his 2010 national PBS pledge special, "Marvin Hamlisch Presents: The '70s, The Way We Were."
Marvin was extremely talented, but what some may not know, he was funny too!
During the taping (we taped 2 shows that day with 2 different audiences)
Marvin would entertain the audiences between acts and production
set changes. He had both audiences laughing at his jokes and comments,
and they were enthralled by his inpromptu piano playing.
announced that we'd be taking a 15-minute break and it would be a great
time for them to use the rest rooms, not one person left their seats.
He told them he really wasn't joking, and they still didn't move.
Finally he said, "Well, I'm going to take a bathroom break and be back in 15-minutes"
and then they finally moved! But each person was back, in their seats,
in less than 15 minutes ready for the next act's taping!
When Marvin performed "The Way We Were" and "Nobody Does It Better," both audiences lept to their feet and cheered, and the applause was unbelievable!
only was he an incomparably, massively-talented man, but he was a real
doll, a true original...he was the "real deal."
My friend, Rita Sherrow, longtime TV editor at the Tulsa World newspaper,
wrote a great 'blog' today about her phone interview with Marvin
Hamlisch in 2010 concerning his PBS special. Here is the link: