Tony Mastroianni Review Collection

"Hello, Mary!"

Cleveland Press May 21, 1965

Ever the perfectionist, Mary Martin was rehearsing when reached by phone at the O'Keefe Center in Toronto.

"Oh, sure we know the show. We were just doing a little checking," she explained, sounding slightly breathless.

"Each theater has its own problems that we have to solve. That's the excitement of going on the road.

"HELLO, DOLLY!" OPENS at the Music Hall Monday under Hanna Theater auspices for a two-week run. The show is touring 12 cities before it makes its State Department tour of Tokyo, Moscow and Leningrad.

After Leningrad the production goes to London where Mary Martin will head up the company for six months at the Drury Lane.

"I haven't played London in 11 years, not since 'South Pacific'," Miss Martin recalled. "After that we'll go to Brazil for a time and then back to New York."

Brazil is where the actress and her husband, producer Richard Halliday, own a ranch. Home is an apartment in New York.

"THERE ARE THREE SHOWS I'm considering after that. When will I stop? There's no reason to stop when you're doing what you love."

Mary Martin's triumphs have been on the stage -- "Leave It to Me," in which her rendition of "My Heart Belongs to Daddy" brought her fame, "One Touch of Venus," "Lute Song," the touring company of "Annie Get Your Gun," "South Pacific," "Kind Sir," "Peter Pan" and "Sound Of Music." But there was a period in which she made movies, 11 of them in four years.

"I couldn't care less about movies. I still owe Paramount six pictures. They gave me a leave of absence 18 years ago and I haven't been back since."

"I haven't seen the movie versions of 'South Pacific' or 'Sound of Music.' I will see 'Sound of Music' as soon as I can because I love Julie Andrews. But I never did want to see South Pacific.' I lived with that show for three years and I have a picture of it -- especially with Enzio Pinza -- that I don't want to lose."

MISS MARTIN denied gossip column reports that she had suggested Julie Andrews for the film version of "Sound of Music."

"Nobody asked me. But I did suggest her for the original stage production of 'My Fair Lady.' And I do suggest that Carol Channing be used in the film version of 'Hello, Dolly!' It would be tragic if they didn't."

(Carol Channing is the star of the New York production.)

Though Mary Martin will be on the road both in and out of the country for some months to come American audiences will be seeing her on television.

Her "Peter Pan" telecast will get its third showing in January and on Palm Sunday, 1966, audiences will see her television spectacular, "Mary Martin at Eastertime with the Radio City Music Hall." The show was directed and choreographed by Gower Champion, who performed the same chores for "Hello Dolly!"