Adrienne Barbeau on stage at NoHo’s El Portal Theatre, April 6 and 7

THERE ARE WORSE THINGS I COULD DO: An Evening with Adrienne Barbeau” is the best personally told story-telling show you can see.

Classic Adrienne Barbeau poster

Super hot Adrienne Barbeau then & now

Adrienne Barbeau has created a show that presents the fascinating tales from her incredibly diverse career and awesome life. So, if you love storytelling at its best, straight from the person who lived the adventures, you don’t want to miss “There Are Worse Things I Could Do: An Evening with Adrienne Barbeau,” Friday, April 6, and Saturday, April 7, at the historic El Portal Theatre, in North Hollywood, California.

“The memoir I wrote was called ‘There Are Worse Things I Could Do,’ the title of the song I sang as the original Rizzo in Grease on Broadway. The book is a copulation of stories from my career, and my life,” Barbeau explained. “I wanted to share those stories in a theatrical setting to entertain audiences, and maybe surprise them.”

Barbeau said she has always enjoyed attending the sci-fi, horror, and ComicCon conventions because “the fans are amazing and I love talking about being a ‘Scream Queen’ and working with John Carpenter and George Romero, thanks to my classic genre films The Fog, Creepshow, Escape From New York, and Swamp Thing, among others. But there’s so much more to talk about.” So, with the encouragement of the El Portal’s Jay Irwin and Pegge Forrest, Adrienne’s one-woman show materialized.

With more than 450 screen performances to her credit (the Oscar-winning Argo among them), she has also made her mark in Broadway musicals, making her Broadway debut as Tevye’s daughter, Hodel, in Fiddler on the Roof. She went on to earn a Tony nomination and a Theatre World Award for playing Rizzo in the original Broadway production of Grease.

Television audiences know her from her role as Bea Arthur’s daughter, Carol, in the trailblazing women’s empowerment series Maude. She is also enormously proud of her starring role as Ruthie the snake dancer in HBO’s Carnivàle. She’s popular as a voice artist working in animated series such as Catwoman in Batman, and a myriad of video games. In addition to her memoir, Adrienne is also the author of a comedic-thriller book series that started with “Vampyres of Hollywood.”

Audiences will be taken on a journey with Adrienne, who said, “My first job started the week after high school. I went to Southeast Asia to entertain the armed forces for $7 a day. We were on the DMZ, and the enemy opened fire. It was an awakening for an 18-year-old in 1963.”

“There are lots of interesting and many humorous stories from my life involving
working for the mob, being the first go-go dancer in Manhattan, doing Grease, doing Maude, going off to Moscow to do a low-budget horror movie with 50 trained rats. I’ll talk about the early boyfriends, dating Burt Reynolds, and all kinds of things.”

She won’t be singing live “but I’ll have my album playing when I walk in. And I’ll show a clip of my Pippin performance, hanging upside-down on a trapeze swinging and singing ‘No Time At All’.”

Barbeau loves doing the Q & As, “because they’re such fun.” That’s the format of the show—a lively, informal version of an actor’s studio presentation. “It’s an evening of me talking about my movies, the horror films, being part of the ground-breaking series Maude, etc. At the end we open it up and take questions from the audience. They always want to know what Bea Arthur was like. And I’m more than happy to answer almost anything. It always fascinates me to hear what people ask about my experiences.”

Always among the questions are discussions about Adrienne’s iconic cheesecake pin-up poster from 1978 and being a Hollywood sex symbol over the decades. Of course, horror fans want to know the gory details about her classic horror movies. And there’s always a Star Trek fan who asks about her role as the Romulan Senator Cretak in the Deep Space Nine episode “Inter Arma Enim Silent Leges.” Barbeau insisted the genre fans are “the most wonderful people in the world.”

Barbeau’s personal life is not off limits, and she’s happy to reveal she had twins when she was 51. “My children are my greatest personal accomplishment. It just never crossed my mind that my twins would be in college when I was in my 70s,” reported the eternally super-hot lady.

Barbeau said, “My greatest professional accomplishment is that I have earned a living at something I absolutely love. I am very fortunate to have been a working actor my entire life. It’s a wonderful life. That’s it in a nutshell.”

Brian Christopher Williams will act as moderator for the evening. “He is a great playwright and one of my closest friends,” reported Barbeau. Together they will show film clips and still shots to create a unique and interesting evening for the enthusiastic El Portal audiences.

“There Are Worse Things I Could Do: An Evening with Adrienne Barbeau,” is showcased Friday, April 6, at 8 p.m., and Saturday, April 7, at 8 p.m., only at the historic El Portal Theatre. For tickets go to http://www.elportaltheatre.com or call 818-508-4200, or visit the El Portal Theatre boxoffice at 5269 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood.


Margie Barron has written for a wide variety of outlets including Gannett newspapers, Nickelodeon, Tiger Beat and 16 Magazine, Fresh!, Senior Life, Production Update, airline magazines, etc. Margie is also proud to be half of the husband and wife writing team Frank & Margie Barron, who have written together for various entertainment and travel publications for more than 30 years.

Advertisement