Dec. 20, 1980: “Don Brockett’s “Big, Bad Burlesque’ as part of the New Year’s Eve celebration”
A 2 a.m. performance of Don Brockett’s “Big, Bad Burlesque” was part of the New Year’s Eve celebration at the Marriott in Green Tree.
Don Brockett was the “premier parodist of Pittsburgh” and its “emperor of entertainment.” That’s how Chris Rawson, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s senior drama critic, described him in in an obituary published in 1995.
A barrel chested, multi-talented entertainer with a raspy voice, Mr. Brockett was a writer, composer, director and producer of musicals and satirical cabaret shows. Over a period of 30 years, he employed more than 1,000 entertainers, many of whom went on to careers on Broadway or in films. Brockett alumni include Michael Keaton and Rob Marshall.
This picture features entertainers from “Big, Bad Burlesque,” a cabaret hit Mr. Brockett ran off and on for 25 years. This particular cast appeared at the Marriott in Green Tree during a 2 a.m. performance for New Year’s revelers who stayed up late after greeting the dawn of 1981.
Kneeling down in front is David Wilson. From left to right, the male players are Doug Mertz, Gordon Lowe in the middle and Harry O’Toole on the right. The four ladies remain a mystery. The picture, which appeared in the Sunday Pittsburgh Press on Dec. 21, 1980 does not identify the individual cast members.
(Photo by Kent Badger, The Pittsburgh Press)