My early years saw me moving place to place every two years, as the son of a naval aviator. Earliest memories include dinghy sailing on Coronado Bay, running thru the jungles of Guam and finding abandoned machine gun nests and caves… exploring the fringes of the Everglades as a Boy Scout living on a Navy base in Opa-Locka, Florida… hunting and fishing, riding in unspoiled remote regions of Argentina, visiting Machu Piccu in Peru, chasing rheas and digging clams on the Straits of Magellan.
At the University of North Carolina, I eventually wandered into the Radio-TV department and became the chief announcer and co-production manager of WUNC-FM Chapel Hill. I also wrote, acted and directed for an NAEB series “Strange Legends of the South.” Realizing my skills were underdeveloped, I took courses in acting and playwriting and appeared in a few plays. I was still scared stiff onstage. My writing caught the notice of novelists John Ehle and Jesse Rehder, who were very encouraging which led to my continuing education as a graduate playwriting student at the University of Texas. I appeared in many of the plays there for two years, finally beating the stage fright. Never did finish that Masters Degree… they put off offering the courses I needed and I was getting older, got married, and left for L.A.
In 1967 I married my second wife, actress Linda Gary, after I assured her I wanted to see Europe as much as she did. Linda was first-generation American and hankered to visit the places her family came from. We started in England in June of 1970, then Scotland (golf at St. Andrews), then Ireland, then to Malmo, Sweden to get the SAAB. Saw Scandinavia, drove through Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Austria, went to Italy on the advice of an agent we met in Germany and got work in commercials within a month. We got an apartment there and started dubbing (foreign films to English) and acting in films in both Italy and Spain. Wound up living in Rome for almost four years. It was one of the best times of our lives, vacationed in Florence, Sicily, Positano, Morocco and all over Spain. One highlight was getting invited to the Cannes Film Festival as a journalist (long story) and meeting Peter O’Toole at a cocktail party. Other highlights include getting to interview Gregory Peck, Alfred Hitchcock and Groucho Marx, in addition to getting interviewed ourselves as “the top dubbing team in Europe.”
We only came back to the States (in 1974) because the Common Market was making it tough for us to work as Americans and we had had our first child, Alexis. But good things happened… on our return to L.A., I was cast immediately in my first Equity (union) show, “Under Papa’s Picture” with Eve Arden, at the Cirque Dinner Theatre in Seattle, Washington. I was nervous all over again, but Eve liked me, and a year later hired me and wife Linda back to do the show in St. Petersburg, Florida, where we had such a good time we conceived second daughter, Dana.
I’m a golf addict. My other hobby is writing. I’ve sold short stories to magazines and literary journals, wrote a few radio plays for the Salvation Army show “Heartbeat Theatre” (now extinct) and published poetry in some literary journals, plus I have three screenplays as yet un-produced.
I refer you to IMDb for credits I’ve acquired in TV, film and animation. My favorite jobs include working with Lee Remick, Peter Falk and James Garner. My favorite role was playing Captain-Governor Arthur Phillip in “Our Country’s Good” -an amazing play based on the first penal colony in Australia.
Most recently I appeared in the highly successful play, “The Boomerang Effect” at the Odyssey and the Zephyr Theatres, on TV in “Justified,” recurred on “Days Of Our Lives” and on the festival-winning web series “Old Souls.”
Sic transit Gloria.