Back in 1985, a TV show was broadcast called Night of 100 Stars, which was successful enough that they did it a few years. It was a big extravaganza -- put together by legendary Broadway producer Alexander Cohen -- crammed with...well, 100 stars. Probably more. To get all those stars on air, though (and probably to agree to appear, where they didn't have to do much), they would have a big production number like this one, where many didn't have to do much more than walk across the stage. Still, it's fun. This is an 8-1/2 minute dance number from the broadcast. Though I'm not a huge fan of dance, this is really a treat. Even despite it being an homage to shoes. They list the name of each new performer, as he or she makes their entrance, so you won't have to guess who's who -- especially from the distance of 28 years. Only one person doesn't get his name listed, It's Dick Van Dyke, but that's because he had appeared earlier in the show and been identified already.
Bizarrely, I actually had a sort of-connection with one of the later shows, though it's not what you think.
A few years after I'd moved into my apartment, I began to realize that I had the former phone number that had belonged to the actor John Ritter. (It wasn't the same apartment -- dream on -- just the phone number.) I'd get phone messages for "Hey, Chef," which made no sense to me, until -- putting it together with other calls for "John," and then a few other clues -- I realized he'd played a chef on Three's Company. Then, one day I got a message from Alexander Cohen himself, not a secretary, asking for John Ritter, inviting him to appear on his new edition of Night of 100 Stars. Because I knew it was a wrong number, but Alexander Cohen didn't know that, I decided that I didn't want him to think that John Ritter had stood him up and rudely ignored him. So, I called the number he left. I didn't speak with Cohen, but did talk with his secretary. No surprisingly, she was shocked that I'd called, but appreciative.
Years, later, my friend Rob Hedden was directing a TV movie he'd written, a thriller called The Colony. And the
star of it was John Ritter (along with Hal Linden). I always like visiting Rob's sets -- among other things, he has a great eye, and always cast beautiful women, but I digress -- but this time I really wanted to go, so that I could meet John Ritter and finally tell him the story. I did get the chance, and he thought it was a hoot. Sadly, he passed away not longer after.
Hey, I told you that this wasn't what you'd expect when I said I had a sort-of connection to Night of 100 Stars.
Digressions R Us.
But now, on with the show...
Robert J. Elisberg is a political commentator, screenwriter, novelist, tech writer and also some other things that I just tend to keep forgetting.
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