Life Is Not a Stage: From Broadway Baby to a Lovely Lady and Beyond
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Carol Brady, the character Florence Henderson played on the perennially popular sitcom the Brady Bunch was the perfect mother, but Henderson's background growing up in the aftermath of the Great Depression was a sharp contrast to that innocent suburban idyll. And though Mrs. Brady is the character she's most associated with, Henderson's talents have taken her career far beyond the scope of one TV sitcom. From The Tonight Show, to Broadway with Rodgers and Hammerstein, to her more recent appearance on Dancing With the Stars, Florence opens up about her life in and out of the spotlight. From her challenging childhood, to her extramarital affairs and divorce, Florence writes with honesty and wisdom in this inspiring memoir.
miraculous young life. Despite the abandonment, neglect, and poverty I experienced as a child, I had an abiding faith I would do better than just survive. I knew with absolute certainty that everything was going to be okay in the end. I felt the undeniable presence of a guiding and protective hand from a higher power above. This gave me a sense of optimism, as if my spirit were still free in spite of my circumstances. As I look back on that time, I wish I could recapture the unswerving faith of
up: commitment, responsibility, expectation, guilt, doubt, and so on. Regardless of the causes and conditions, they all lead back to the core question: Why are we really here? The only answer that makes any sense for me is to strive to use the gift that has been given me in order to do something in some way to help others. CHAPTER 11 The Girl Who Came to Supper Loses Her Appetite By this time, it may not come as any surprise that I landed a great part in a Broadway musical, and
was a part of Ira that was equally frustrated, but whether or not he ever went outside the marriage, I don’t know. I never asked him. After the initial trauma subsided, the matter seemed to fade into the woodwork on his part. There were attempts to heal the rift. We tried. He tried. I even delicately bought a few books to try to spice things up. I would like to be able to make it a nice and tidy story and say that when the affair was over it was also the end of my infidelity. But that was not to
on so many levels. You know when an idea is truly good because things seem to snowball. At its heart was the notion of the blended family, a father with three sons and a mother with three daughters coming together to form a new family. Blended families were hardly a new concept, but it probably took on a new significance given what people had gone through in the 1960s in breaking from longstanding traditional mores. (Remember the pill?) Divorce rates were up, and so blended families naturally
the four children, all the “what ifs,” combined with exhaustion and a feeling of being overwhelmed, created the perfect recipe. As this phobia increased in severity in the mid-1970s, I found myself more frequently turning job offers down because I didn’t want to fly. The depletion and exhaustion during The Sound of Music caused me to suffer from stage fright as well, which grew progressively more difficult. Insomnia and my general lack of awareness about sound nutrition were also contributing