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Kaye Ballard, Phyllis Diller, Burt ReynoldsKaye Ballard and Jim HesselmanKaye Ballard in NO, NO NANETTEKaye Ballard and Even ArdenKaye Ballard on The Mike Douglas Show

January 22, 2019 — Rancho Mirage, CA — Actress, Singer, Comedienne Kaye Ballard died peacefully at home in Rancho Mirage, CA on Monday, January 21, 2019 at age 93 after a brief illness. She was born Catherine Gloria Ballota in Cleveland, one of 4 children of Vincent and Lena Ballota and raised by her beloved Nana, Gabriella. Kaye graduated from West Tech High School in Cleveland with a scholarship in Fine Art. “I decided not to take it because a little voice inside me said that even though I had some ability I would never be the best artist, but I might, just might be among the best in show business”. So she went down to the Frank Sennes Theatrical Agency in downtown Cleveland and declared herself the “most talented person in the world”. Her guts got her local bookings as the “Sensational Comedienne Kay Ballad”. She sang and did imitations of Betty Hutton, Bette Davis, and Judy Garland. Soon she was appearing in vaudeville and got her big break when Spike Jones invited her to play a “trick tuba” with his touring band (Kaye was also an accomplished flutist). Her touring days led to her long-lasting career as a concert and nightclub star (The Blue Angel & The Bon Soir in New York, Mr. Kelly’s in Chicago, The Hungry i & The Purple Onion in San Francisco and countless clubs and concert halls across the US and Europe), recording artist (having introduced three standards, “Maybe This Time,” “Fly Me To The Moon”, and “Lazy Afternoon”), television star (THE MEL TORME SHOW, THE PERRY COMO SHOW, THE DORIS DAY SHOW, hundreds of series guest shots, talk and game show appearances, but best known for co-starring with Eve Arden in THE MOTHERS-IN-LAW, directed and produced by Desi Arnaz), and Broadway star (THE GOLDEN APPLE, CARNIVAL, PIRATES OF PENZANCE).

Kaye Ballard Kaye always had a project going. Over 70 years of making a living from nothing but show business. Whether writing her memoir, recording a biography, or giving a series of benefit concerts she just kept moving ahead. In her late 80s Kaye performed no less than five different concerts backed by a full orchestra in New Mexico, Texas, and California with friends Lee Roy Reams, Donna McKechnie, and Liliane Montevecchi, all for the protection and well-being of animals. Kaye lived her final years happily surrounded by her puppies in the house she bought from Desi Arnaz on a street which was ultimately named for her—Kaye Ballard Lane. She knew and worked with every legend of 20th Century entertainment from Ray Bolger to George Clooney. Throughout her career Kaye was always devoted to the encouragement of rising talent. A super-fan of the movies from the time she first ushered at the RKO Palace Theatre back in Cleveland, Kaye was seen on the big screen in such films as THE GIRL MOST LIKELY, A HOUSE IS NOT A HOME, WHICH WAY TO THE FRONT, FREAKY FRIDAY, and THE RITZ. Ironically, her passing coincides with the initial exhibition last week at the Palm Springs Film Festival of a documentary about her life and career entitled THE SHOW GOES ON!, which she proudly attended. When told of the Audience Favorite Award the film was given, she responded by saying that, “I can now die a happy woman.”


Interview announcement image

A CONVERSATION WITH KAYE

Legendary Stage and Film Actress Shares Her Memories from Gilbert & Sullivan’s
The Pirates of Penzance.

September 6, 2016 — This New Year’s Eve, American musician and composer Adrian D. Holmes will release his debut album titled The Pirates of Penzance: Revamped and Revisited, a completely electronic re-imagination of the score from William Gilbert and Arthur Sullivan’s classic operetta The Pirates of Penzance. As we countdown to December 31, Adrian has been spending time with various artists who have appeared in major productions of The Pirates over the years. The first to be featured is none other than Ms. Kaye Ballard, the beautifully talented actress whose dazzling career has spanned over seven decades.

In this interview, Kaye shares her memories of working alongside major stars like Rex Smith, Kevin Kline, Treat Williams, and Maureen McGovern; of coping with only two weeks of rehearsals to prepare for a challenging fifty-three week Broadway run; and even of nearly forgetting the lyrics to an entire song in the middle of a performance!

Experience these and other memories from Kaye, as she takes Adrian and the rest of us on a rip-roaring high-seas adventure through what has been lauded “the very model of a modern major musical.”

Read the interview for yourself today at http://www.adriandholmes.com/news--notes/a-conversation-with-kaye.

 


Goin Out of Business

Kaye Ballard’s “Going Out of Business!” Farewell Show

Jan. 24, 2014 - Veteran actress, Kaye Ballard, is happy to present her “Going Out of Business!” Farewell Show. The “Going Out of Business!” Farewell Show will be hosted at Camelot Theatres on Tuesday, March 11th beginning at 7pm. The show will be almost two hours of live entertainment, with a 15 minute intermission. “There’s lots of singing and entertainment,” Ballard continued. “Plus some very special guest appearances and, of course, some fun surprises along the way!”

Ballard has been performing for more than sixty four years! To say she is a survivor is a bit of an understatement! But now, at eighty eight, Kaye has decided to retire. That’s the bad news. The good news is that Kaye’s giving Palm Springs area audiences one last chance to see her. “I wanted to do one last show before I retired,” Kaye said recently. “But the only business I know is show business, so I decided to just say I was going out of business!”

The show, aptly entitled “Kaye Ballard…is Going Out Of Business!,” is scheduled to take place on March 11, 2014, at the Camelot Theatres in Palm Springs. “It’s one show only,” Kaye says. “None of this coming and going and coming and going for me. This is really it!” The show, which features almost two hours of live entertainment, begins at 7pm, and will include one 15 minute intermission. “There’s lots of singing and entertainment,” Ballard continued. “Plus some very special guest appearances and, of course, some fun surprises along the way!”

For info and tickets, visit www.camelottheatres.com/2014/01/24/kaye-ballards-going-out-of-business-farewell-show/


Feinstein's logo

KAYE BALLARD
“MAYBE THIS TIME”

One Night Only at
FEINSTEIN'S at LOEWS REGENCY

Sunday, Jun 17, 2012: 8:00PM

This will be Kaye Ballard’s first appearance in New York in well over a decade. Ballard’s show “MAYBE THIS TIME” referring to the song which was written for her, and she introduced, will discuss her experiences in show business during these first 70 years of her ongoing career, culminating in a salute to her mentor Henny Youngman.

 


 

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