Alice Ghostley

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(Early Life)
 
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Alice Ghostley (1926-2007), American actress best-known for her television roles as "Alice" on ''Mayberry, R.F.D.'', as "Esmerelda" on ''Bewitched'' (1969-72) and as Bernice Clifton on ''Designing Women''
 
Alice Ghostley (1926-2007), American actress best-known for her television roles as "Alice" on ''Mayberry, R.F.D.'', as "Esmerelda" on ''Bewitched'' (1969-72) and as Bernice Clifton on ''Designing Women''
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<center>I am a professional genealogist. Contact me, if you'd like help in tracing your family tree, by clicking the below button.</center>
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<center>[http://www.countyhistorian.com/cecilweb/index.php/Rates_and_Hours http://i.keen.com/D1_cb-call-now-136x40_V5.gif]</center>
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This article should be cited as:<blockquote>"Alice Ghostley", by Will Johnson, [mailto:wjhonson@aol.com wjhonson@aol.com], at CountyHistorian.com, professional genealogist copyright 2007-8, all rights reserved.</blockquote>
  
 
This page is the '''most complete and thorough''' biography of Alice Ghostley which exists.  It's however not finished.  So if you have something to add let me know.
 
This page is the '''most complete and thorough''' biography of Alice Ghostley which exists.  It's however not finished.  So if you have something to add let me know.
  
This article written and copyright 2008 by Will Johnson, Freelance Biographer and Professional Genealogist, All Rights Reserved.  You may email me at [mailto:wjhonson@aol.com wjhonson@aol.com]
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You may email me at [mailto:wjhonson@aol.com wjhonson@aol.com]
  
 
Please also visit my version of this article [http://knol.google.com/k/will-johnson/alice-ghostley/4hmquk6fx4gu/5# here on Knol] and Review it and Rate it!  Thanks.
 
Please also visit my version of this article [http://knol.google.com/k/will-johnson/alice-ghostley/4hmquk6fx4gu/5# here on Knol] and Review it and Rate it!  Thanks.
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By 1930, the family had moved to Siloam Springs, [[Benton County, Arkansas|Benton County]], [[Arkansas]] where her father Harry was buried in 1933 having died at a hospital in Missouri that year.  She attended school in Siloam Springs through the sixth grade, and then the family moved to Henryetta, Okmulgee County, [[Oklahoma]] where Alice finished growing up and graduated from high school.
 
By 1930, the family had moved to Siloam Springs, [[Benton County, Arkansas|Benton County]], [[Arkansas]] where her father Harry was buried in 1933 having died at a hospital in Missouri that year.  She attended school in Siloam Springs through the sixth grade, and then the family moved to Henryetta, Okmulgee County, [[Oklahoma]] where Alice finished growing up and graduated from high school.
  
Afterwards Alice went to the University of Oklahoma in Norman, where she majored in English and drama, but dropped out, to move with her older sister Gladys to New York City.  Gladys got a job as a secretary at Columbia University, while Alice got her first job as an usher at the Imperial Theatre for $11.88 a week.  She studied singing, aiming for a career in that area, but at her 648th audition, as she relates, she was accosted by pianist-composer George Wood.  George hated his first name and so he was always credited as "G. Wood".  He persuaded her, that what she really was, was a comedienne.  The two of them begun doing comedy in small venues where she was spotted by [[Imogene Coca]].
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Afterwards Alice went to the University of Oklahoma in Norman, where she majored in English and drama, but dropped out, to move with her older sister Gladys to New York City.  Gladys got a job as a secretary at Columbia University, while Alice got her first job as an usher at the Imperial Theatre for $11.88 a week.  She studied singing, aiming for a career in that area, but at her 648th audition, as she relates, she was accosted by pianist-composer George Wood.  (George hated his first name and so he was always credited as "G. Wood".) He persuaded her, that what she really was, was a comedienne.  The two of them begun doing comedy in small venues where she was spotted by [[Imogene Coca]].
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Alice performed in summer stock in Maryland in a "new musical revue by G Wood" called ''Of Suger And Spice'', Jul 1950
  
 
===Early Career===
 
===Early Career===
 
<table><tr><td><table><tr><td>http://www.wastelandletters.com/uploaded_images/alice-ghostley-784339.jpg</td>
 
<table><tr><td><table><tr><td>http://www.wastelandletters.com/uploaded_images/alice-ghostley-784339.jpg</td>
<td>One source states that it was Imogene who told Leonard Sillman about Ghostley, while another credits Murray Grand. Whoever did it, Leonard put Ghostley in his annual revue ''New Faces'' of 1952 where she had a hit with her rendition of the song "The Boston Beguine".  ''New Faces'' played Broadway for a year, and then toured to a 28-week engagement in Chicago, followed up by stops in San Francisco and Los Angeles.  Four of the other aspiring members of the revue that year were [[Paul Lynde]], [[Ronny Graham]], [[Robert Clary]] and [[Eartha Kitt]], and one of the writers, in his first work for the Broadway theater, [[Mel Brooks]].  The tour was so successful, that "New Faces" was made into a Cinemascope production released in 1954, and Alice again was a co-star as was Eartha Kitt, but Paul Lynde's name does not appear in the advertisement.  As amateurs, she and her sister Gladys once did an act together and were given the eerie-sounding billing of "The Ghostley Sisters."</td></tr></table>
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<td>Imogene's friend Leonard Sillman had been producing an annual revue called ''New Faces'' ever since his first one in 1934 which launched the careers of Imogene herself and also [[Henry Fonda]].  One source states that it was Imogene who told Leonard Sillman about Ghostley, while another credits Murray Grand with that find.
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Whoever did it, Leonard put Ghostley in his annual revue ''New Faces'' of 1952 where she had a hit with her rendition of the song "The Boston Beguine".  ''New Faces'' played Broadway for a year, and then toured to a 28-week engagement in Chicago, followed up by stops in San Francisco and Los Angeles.  Four of the other aspiring members of the revue that year were [[Paul Lynde]], [[Ronny Graham]], [[Robert Clary]] and [[Eartha Kitt]], and one of the writers, in his first work for the Broadway theater, [[Mel Brooks]].  The tour was so successful, that "New Faces" was made into a Cinemascope production released in 1954, and Alice again was a co-star as was Eartha Kitt, but Paul Lynde's name does not appear in the advertisement.  As amateurs, she and her sister Gladys once did an act together and were given the eerie-sounding billing of "The Ghostley Sisters."</td></tr></table>
  
 
Her act, as reported many years later consisted of : "Appearing in horn-rimmed glasses and dressed in a frumpy black sweater, she stumbled across the stage as a bewildered, sexually repressed young woman, crooning to a beguine beat about her ill-fated romance with a Harvard man, underneath a 'Voodoo moon' in Boston."
 
Her act, as reported many years later consisted of : "Appearing in horn-rimmed glasses and dressed in a frumpy black sweater, she stumbled across the stage as a bewildered, sexually repressed young woman, crooning to a beguine beat about her ill-fated romance with a Harvard man, underneath a 'Voodoo moon' in Boston."
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In Episode 230 aka Season 8 Episode 4 "Samantha's Not-So-Leaning Tower of Pisa", the Stephens take a vacation to Italy.  Esmerelda pops in to straighten the Leaning Tower of Pisa.
 
In Episode 230 aka Season 8 Episode 4 "Samantha's Not-So-Leaning Tower of Pisa", the Stephens take a vacation to Italy.  Esmerelda pops in to straighten the Leaning Tower of Pisa.
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Read my write-up on "[http://knol.google.com/k/will-johnson/list-of-the-episodes-of-bewitched/4hmquk6fx4gu/100#view Every episode of Bewitched]" on Knol, where you can buy or watch most of the 254 episodes.
  
 
===Later Career and Death===
 
===Later Career and Death===

Latest revision as of 17:02, 24 January 2010

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