On Stage with Bette Davis

Inside the Famous Flop of Miss Moffat


In stock

About the Book

A reflection on one of Broadway’s most iconic flops, this memoir follows a musical that featured one of the silver screen’s most powerful personalities. Bette Davis was nominated for twelve Academy Awards and twice won the Best Actress award, starring in classics like Jezebel, The Letter, The Little Foxes, All About Eve and Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?, among many more. In 1974, the living legend agreed to star in Miss Moffat, a musical adaptation of Emlyn Williams’ The Corn in Green. Expectations were high, but Miss Moffat opened and then abruptly closed, leading theatre gossips to speculate on what went wrong. Early in his career, Kevin Lane Dearinger, a young actor who had recently relocated to New York, landed a minor role in Miss Moffat. Inexperienced and unsure of himself, he kept a journal of his observations and experiences throughout production. He observed the older and more seasoned Miss Davis, who seemed determined to remain clear-headed despite the unfolding calamity. In this book, Dearinger revisits his journal to reflect on his own life, a fated stage production, his experience with an entertainment legend and a bygone era of Broadway.

About the Author(s)

Retired Broadway performer and teacher Kevin Lane Dearinger now lives in Lexington, Kentucky. He is the author of several books, published poems, plays and introductory essays.

Bibliographic Details

Kevin Lane Dearinger

Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 156
Bibliographic Info: 15 photos, index
Copyright Date: 2022
pISBN: 978-1-4766-8813-8
eISBN: 978-1-4766-4660-2
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix
Apologia 1
One. The ­Warm-Up: Auditions 5
Two. ­Warm-Up at an East Side Brunch 21
Three. Rehearsals: Round One 29
Four. Rehearsals: Round Two 67
Five. Philadelphia Rehearsals: Round Three 73
Six. Into the Ring 83
Seven. Tending the Bruises 91
Eight. Total Knockout 103
Epilogue. A Brief Rematch: One Night Only 111
Miss Moffat Facts 125
Select Biographies 131
Index 137