TCPalm: Burt really delivers in sold-out one-man show at The Lyric Theatre

Saturday, January 15, 2011


It was a sold-out, three-night show, offering two hours of magical, comical, poignant nostalgia about amazing people, glamorous ladies, exciting film stunts, funny quips and sparkling movie stars.


It was Burt Reynolds taking another heartfelt walk down his personal star-studded memory lane, last Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, when he presented his latest version of "An Evening With Burt Reynolds" at the Lyric Theatre in Stuart.


The final performance Jan. 12, was attended by many friends and fans, including Pompano Beach resident, Wayne Huizenga, former owner of the Miami Dolphins, Florida Panthers and Florida Marlins teams; and soft-rock singer, actress, health activist Olivia Newton-John and her husband John Easterling, who have a home in Jupiter Inlet Colony.


Reynolds kicked off with a 1930's slide photo show of pudgy baby Burton Leon Reynolds, Jr., his first girlfriend Billie Rae at age five, scenes, excerpts and slides and stories from his life, many of the 100 films he has made over the years and tributes to the famous actors in them, ending with scenes from his voice-over animated film "All Dogs Go to Heaven" (1989).


Reynolds really delivered a solid one-man stage performance that brought the audience to its feet with thunderous applause.


The first act closely resembled his original one-person offering done in the 1990s, including his growing up in Riviera Beach and Palm Beach High School; his parents and family; Florida State University and football; his lost spleen from an auto accident; Watson B. Duncan at Palm Beach Community College; and subsequent acting start with the play, "Outward Bound" here and "Mr. Roberts" on Broadway.


Act Two brought us up to date on the later phase of his life, including wife Loni Anderson; son Quinton; the movies "Boogie Nights," Striptease;" and his Oscar nomination; "Evening Shade," his Emmy-winning television show; his master acting classes at Burt Reynolds Institute for Film and Theatre and the many more recent films he has appeared in.


His reminiscences about the fabulous stars he has known were, of course, the highlight, as he used his impeccable comedic timing to offer quips and stories about actors like Bette Davis, Cary Grant, Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Dolly Parton, Sally Field, Clark Gable, Lee Marvin, George Hamilton, Ossie Davis, Carol Burnett, Dom Deluise, Charles Nelson Reilly, Jimmy Stewart and even "Toothless Joe" from the film "Deliverance." He kept us in stitches with his amazing memory for details that spanned his illustrious 50-year career.


When talking about iconic actor James Cagney, Reynolds said he had the good fortune to meet him one day in Hollywood. At the end of their conversation, he asked Cagney for a picture, meaning a photo of the Oscar-winning actor himself.


Cagney asked what type?


"Oh, one of you from your trip to Paris would be nice," Reynolds said.


"A few days later a delivery came to my home and it was a beautiful oil painting of a man walking down the street in Paris in the rain," he said. "I was astounded. I meant just a photo, so I called him and his wife answered. When I told her it was Burt Reynolds on the phone, she passed on the information to Cagney sitting nearby and he said, 'You tell that S.O.B. if he wants another painting, he'll have to buy the next one!'


The Lyric's John Loesser was the executive producer of "An Evening With Burt Reynolds." Suzanne Niedland produced the show along with Scott Wagneister as creative director, Bert Zimmerman, stage manager and Aaron Wells doing the program cover art.


This week in the recent BRIFT Newsletter online, Niedland announced that she is resigning as chair of the board of BRIFT, "to take care of some personal issues and to pursue some of her career projects." The board has named Vice Chair Kathleen Kozinski (former Jupiter Councilwoman) as the new chair.


For more information about the historic Lyric Theatre's season, call 561-286-7827. For BRIFT's film and theater classes, call 561-743-9955.


Licari to host Student Showcase of Films gala


Hundreds of students and film enthusiasts will come together on March 25 to honor what could be the next generation of Hollywood geniuses during the Palm Beach International Film Festival's Student Showcase of Films awards gala.


The 16th annual event will be held at the Keith C. & Elaine Johnson World Performing Arts Center at Lynn University in Boca Raton, a sponsor of the 2011 competition.


The highly acclaimed festival is the largest statewide film competition and awards ceremony for Florida student filmmakers. Each year, the submitted films are judged by top industry professionals and competition finalists are honored at a live awards show for more than 800 attendees from around the state.


Longtime supporter and notable actor Frank Licari of The Jove Comedy Experience, will serve as host of the 2011 ceremony, and will bring his hilarious act of musical performances, impersonations and sketch comedy to the show. This will be the fifth year the owner and founder of Jupiter's The Atlantic Theatre hosts the event.


The juried competition recognizes outstanding high school and college students by presenting over $10,000 in scholarships and awards in six film categories: Feature/Shorts, Documentary, Animation, Commercial/PSA, Music Video, and Audience Award, in addition to screenwriting and poster competitions.


Honoring the legacy of Burt Reynolds, the festival also awards an annual scholarship bearing his name, plus a Sara Fuller Student Scholarship through Film Florida. Winning student films will also be screened in their entirety at the students' own premiere during the film festival.


Entries for the 2011 Student Showcase of Films competition are currently being accepted. Film students enrolled in Florida high schools and colleges are encouraged to submit their entries online no later than the final deadline of Tuesday, Feb. 1.


Application packages received after 5 p.m. on Feb. 1 will not be accepted. To submit through the new online application program, view the awards breakdown and learn more about the competition, please visit


For more information about the Student Showcase of Films, please visit or the Facebook page.


Kay to teach audition science class


Hurrah! You did your monologue and now you've been called back to actually read for a part. The sweat begins to form. Your mind goes blank. Now what?


In the class "Audition Science, Part 2: The Callback," veteran director/actor Kenneth Kay shares his knowledge of how to properly prepare for any callback back situation, even if you've never seen the script and have only 30 seconds to prepare.


The class begins Monday, Jan. 31 at the Maltz Jupiter Theatre from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at a cost of $15 per hour.