Wednesday, December 2, 2015
Exclusive Q&A with Sally Darling
Buddy Beaverhausen: Let me start by asking you, Sally, where you were born.
Sally Darling: Thank you, Buddy. I was born and raised in Virginia. So basically, I'm a Southern girl. But, of course, in the theater, you have to get the Southern accent out of your voice. Also, I grew up emulating the stars in the movies when they spoke with mid-Atlantic accents. "Classy American" accents.
BB: What was your upbringing like?
SD: It was strange, because I grew up in a large house that my grandmother (my father's mother) owned and it was fabulous for playing hide-and-seek in. But there were also a lot of household do's and don'ts that were very stringent and tough at the time.
BB: What kind of music did you listen to when you were growing up?
SD: It was interesting because my dad loved theater and he loved show tunes. We had a piano and he'd play them and sing. My brother loved classical music. So I grew up hearing both!
BB: You were talking about stars with neutral accents, Who did you emulate in particular?
SD: I didn't really try to copy anybody especially. I just loved the "clean" accent of the studio-trained actresses of the day.
BB: Is Sally Darling your real name?
SD: Darling is real. My first name is actually Sarah but I've always called myself Sally.
BB: So it has nothing to do with the character from To Kill a Mockingbird?
SD: No, not at all.
BB: Tell us a little bit about your show "Perspectives," which will be at Don't Tell Mama, 5pm on Sunday, Dec. 13th.
SD: Well, I adore Sidney Meyer [club owner/manager] and his cabaret. I love playing that room! It's gotten to feel like home for me.
BB: I know Sidney from my old cabaret show days. He's just wonderful!
SD: I couldn't agree with you more.
BB: For "Perspectives," how do you select your songs? How did you make your choices?
SD: The theme for "Perspectives" is how we see things. How each of us, individually, sees things. And our reactions to what we see are filtered through our basic nature, our upbringing, et cetera.
BB: And how did you select the songs for this act?
SD: Well, I have to confess that, very often, when Matthew Martin Ward and I create a new show, we put together a group of songs we love and, hopefully, a theme will emerge. Once we get the songs we want, and we get them in the order we want, then I write the text that will add a structure, an order to it all.
BB: What songs might we expect from this show?
SD: Rodgers and Hart's "Falling in Love with Love," "Willow Weep of Me," Jerry Herman's "I Don't Want to Know" and a number of favorites from the Great American Songbook!
BB: You have a distinct gay following and, as my blog appeals to a large LGBT audience, I was wondering if there's anything you'd like to say to them in particular.
SD: I think people are people and I see my audience as individuals. Gay/straight, black/white, male/female. I think everybody deserves respect and equal treatment under the law. I'm very much in support of that.
BB: Sally, thank you so much. I look forward to seeing you at Don't Tell Mama on the 13th.
SD: Same here, Buddy! See you then. It was delightful talking to you.