It’s really exciting to be out here finally building a blog and a Facebook page… and for those of you who have been patient with me not doing anything… well, here goes.
I feel like creating a life out here on-line is like being suspended in Space. Kind of like being alive. Like we are all suspended here in space connected through a deep inner connection to Source… and kind of pretending that we’re not. We seem to forget about our connection to Source at every sound. Somehow I feel that many of us keep thinking that life is all just us bumping into each other down here on planet earth. Then sometimes we re-member that there’s more to life than that.
So… what I choose to do with this page is to share my Truth with you. People ask me about my life all the time… and as I look back I can see that it has been adventurous (to say the least), fun, harrowing, deeply moving, sometimes overwhelmingly scary, disappointing and tremendously rich. Just like a good movie. Yeeehawww!
The days go by… they are very busy and I literally forget to share with anyone what’s going on, wondering why in the world anyone would find it interesting.
I promise I won’t photograph plates of food and tell you what I’m eating each day… however… lots of interesting things are going on and it will be fun to share the fun of it all… as well as some of my insights as we go along.
So… this last weekend was HUGE. Two 14-hour days taking a training seminar with Joel Bauer. It was pretty spectacular. When I got back on Sunday night I was led to take screenshots of my very first EVER job in TV – Ironsides! with Raymond Burr. It was 1971. It got me my SAG (Screen Actors Guild) card. That cost me $280 (it’s thousands now), and I got paid a whopping $250 for my SAG contract.
I’m enclosing a photo of the screen that I took with my iPhone — as I couldn’t figure out how to snap a screenshot.
Raymond Burr was amazing, kind, thoughtful. I really liked him. I had only 2 scenes and a line or two in each. I marveled at how thin and beautiful Vera Miles was. And I remembered my lines… had to do my close up with a script girl who was completely devoid of emotion. Whew! It was exciting and scary and done at Universal Studios in Hollywood.
I did a number of shows at Universal Studios and went on plenty of auditions there. I also hung out at the Commissary having lunch and meeting people — that was when a person could actually walk on the lot, wave to the guard and have him nod and wave you through.
This was about the time that Steven Spielberg was walking onto the Universal lot with a briefcase filled with a sandwich and a candy bar and planting himself in an empty trailer on the backlot. He was a kid. He wasn’t “Steven Spielberg” yet. I saw him all the time.
I would also see Lew Wasserman (head of Universal at the time) eating lunch at a nearby table in the commissary putting together this crazy thing he called Universal Studios Theme Park. What was he doing… trying to build a theme park in the middle of Los Angeles? I was young and just wanting a job as an actress. I couldn’t see the vision that Lew Wasserman saw. !! That was before Universal City Walk was even a glimmer in the Theme Park’s eye.
Amazing thing… I’d be walking around the lot and the open buses filled with people on the tour would stop and a guy on a megaphone would be pointing out which soundstage was shooting which series… and which star or famous costume designer resided in which bungalow. It was all in a normal days work.
One day I actually went on the Theme Park ride… just for the fun of it. In the theme park there were a bunch of actors dressed up as cowboys doing a “shoot-out” on a movie set for a group of people on bleachers. I knew one of the “cowboys.” It was just “business as usual” … Really fun, a good job for some fellow actors… but just a stop-gap on the way to getting a starring role in a movie or a series (the actor’s dream.) When I took the tram around the studio listening to the guy with the megaphone… they stopped at all the soundstages that I traversed in and out of all the time. I never went on the tram again, because at that time it was easy to get onto a sound stage, meet the crew and the actors. What a different world it was than now. To get onto a studio lot today you have to be on a hoity-toity list, go through metal detectors, make sure you don’t have a camera, give them the deed to your house… (just kidding)… it’s difficult. Like going through an airport.
I had no vision of what Universal Studios Theme Park was to become. And nobody knew what Steven Spielberg was to become. He was a great guy who came to work with his Cocker Spaniel. I remember going into his office one day (after he had done a few movies and started to make his mark) and I met his dog. I thought, “How cool!” … this guy is down to earth… he brings his dog to work.
More memories, photos and insights are coming. Even though life is still as exciting as ever… or even more so… this time I’ve been asked to start writing it down. It will be fun.
OMG Udana Powers, I can’t stop thinking of you lately. It’s me Leslie Siegel, I worked for your other publicist in the early 1980’s remember? You took me to see She’s the Sheriff and General Hospital events. I had a ball with you. You were so kind to me. I miss you baby. I wish you’d answer your phone so I can say hello. Glad you have a good P.R. person that wrote this wonderful article. I have a photo of you, me, my friends and Suzanne Somers standing together. How fun those day were. Thanks. Love you much, I am fine.