Tony-winner Betty Buckley is equally at home on the Broadway stage, TV and on the Big Screen and so there’s no doubt that fans of hers from all these genres will turn out this weekend for her appearance in Miami Beach.
Buckley will appear at the Colony Theatre in South Beach on Friday and Saturday nights, where she will performing songs from her “Ghostlight,” her new CD, which is filled the kind of with dramatic show-stopping renditions for which the Grammy-nominated singer has become known.
That’s the way it’s been ever since Buckley was 11 years old and growing up in Fort Worth, Texas. Performing “Pajama Game’s” “Steam Heat” in her junior high school talent show, she brought down the house, and she never looked back. “In school choirs I was always put in the back and told ‘Blend in, Blend in.’ Back then I was a tiny thing and I was known as ‘Itty bitty Betty Buckley’ with the big voice,” she recalled in an interview with zoomdune.com.
Smitten by Broadway, Buckley never restrained her vocal chords again, belting out songs wherever she could, including beauty pageants. But she was skeptical of the pageants until she was invited to perform on the Miss America pageant. An agent saw her, signed her, and she snagged the role of Martha Jefferson in the musical “1776” on her first day in New York City. She was 21 years old.
After that came more shows in Broadway and London, including “Promises Promises and Pippin,” before her first film role, in which she played the gym teacher in Carrie. But then came the TV role that made her internationally famous – starring as the stepmother in the wildly popular TV series “Eight is Enough.”
“After 1776 I went to acting classes and I worked really hard to become an actress. And then came “Eight is Enough.” Working on that show was really like going to graduate school of acting, So when I came out of that, I knew how to act and that led to that really wonderful role in Tender Mercies,” said Buckley.
An accomplished film career followed. She’s appeared in 14 movies, including the Woody Allen film “Another Woman” and Roman Polanski’s “Frantic.” (In the Allen film she appeared with Gena Rowlands, one of her acting idols). She’s appeared on more than 30 TV shows, including multiple episodes of “Law and Order,” “LA Law,” “Oz” and “Pretty Little Liars”. She’s also drawn popular and critical acclaim for her stage shows. She’s performed the role of Norma Desmond in “Sunset Boulevard” both in New York and London, and starring as Hesione in the Broadway musical “Triumph of Love,” which won her a Tony Award nomination for Best Actress in a Musical. Dubbed “The Voice of Broadway,” she was inducted into the Theater Hall of Fame in 2012, and saw her name engraved on the walls of the Gershwin Theatre.
But no matter whether she is on the Broadway stage, a Hollywood sound stage, or on a concert hall, she is performing basically the same role, that of the storyteller, says Buckley: “The roots of theater go back the days of balladeers that traveled from village to village and I’m just one of those in a long history of people that traveled around, singing the news and telling about life.”
More info: Colony Theatre