Lady Gaga. Taylor Swift. Beyonce. Kim Kardashian.
These women are uber famous these days and, try as you might, you just can’t escape their presence and influence in modern pop culture. While these young ladies are running the show these days, once upon a time the “it girl” all over the country was Doris Day. Day burst onto the entertainment scene as a singer in 1939 before becoming an A-list actress. Sadly, we lost Day in May of this year, but her legacy still lives on through her movies and music – and through the stories of her longtime friend, local author Paul Brogan.
You might recognize Brogan’s name if you’re at all familiar with Concord. He wrote The Concord Theatre, published this year, about the history of the old downtown theater that now houses Bank of NH stage, and Was That a Name I Dropped?, released in 2011, about growing up gay and battling depression. Now he will play host to a special 60th anniversary screening of the classic film Pillow Talk, as well as a discussion about Day’s life and career, at Concord Public Library on Friday at 2 p.m.
Pillow Talk was a big-time production in 1959, starring Day and Rock Hudson. It tells the story of Jan Morrow (Day), an interior decorator, and Brad Allen (Hudson), a womanizing composer/bachelor, who share a telephone party line. The film won the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay and also received nominations for Best Actress in a Leading Role (Day), Best Actress in a Supporting Role (Thelma Ritter), Best Art Direction-Set Decoration, Color (Richard H. Riedel, Russell A. Gausman, Ruby R. Levitt) and Best Music, Scoring of a Dramatic or Comedy Picture.
While it’s very possible you’ve never seen any movies starring Doris Day, there are plenty of folks out there who are still big fans.
“I will confess that among the classes I have taught for OLLI at Granite State College, the Doris Day Class was the most popular,” Brogan said.
If you’re not one of students (or even if you are) and you want to learn a little more about this pioneer of entertainment, check out this event at the library Friday.
The screening and conversation is free and open to the public. Light refreshments will be provided. The film is not rated and has a runtime of 1 hour, 42 minutes.