January 10, 2009

January 10, 2009
I Saved the Best for Last

Welcome back. We have made it to the weekend! I plan on enjoying a nice relaxing one even though I have to pack for my next trip on Monday.

Yesterday, I spoke about the Hotel Palomar where I stayed in Los Angeles during my recent trip. A little secret is I have a list of people I would love to meet during this lifetime and now I have one I had the privilege and honor to meet.

I have saved the best for last, which was meeting Cherry Jones at the FOX "24" premier party at Club XIV.

See I have been a fan of Miss Jones's since the 80s. You could say she is one of my heroes. She is well known as a premiere theater actress and an advocate for gay rights, Cherry Jones has also appeared in a number of high profile films. She was born and raised in Tennessee, GO VOLUNTEERS!

A founding member of the American Repertory Theatre in Cambridge, MA, she spent the early years of her professional career performing in a wide range of plays. After she relocated to New York, Jones acted in numerous Broadway productions, including Angels in America, The Night of the Iguana, Our Country's Good, and A Moon for the Misbegotten. Her performance as the lonely heroine in the 1995 production of The Heiress earned Jones several awards, including the Tony.

Even as she became a theater star, Miss Jones added television and films to her repertoire in the 1980s, with supporting roles in the TV docudrama Alex: The Life of a Child (1986) and Paul Schrader's Light of Day (1987). Miss Jones also appeared in the hit comedies Housesitter (1992) and A League of Their Own (1992).

After several years of stage work, Jones returned to films in the independent black comedy Julian Po (1997), and Robert Redford's The Horse Whisperer (1998). Jones brought an air of forceful integrity to her roles as the embattled head of the Federal Theater Project in Tim Robbins' 1930s tapestry Cradle Will Rock (1999) and as one of the chemical contamination victims in Steven Soderbergh's Erin Brockovich (2000).

Unabashedly out since her professional debut at age 21, Jones made theater history of sorts when she thanked her same sex domestic partner from the podium when she won her Tony for The Heiress. Jones added her voice to Out of the Past (1998), a documentary about the struggles of the gay rights movement throughout U.S. history, and co-starred in the TV movie about lesbian parents, What Makes a Family (2001).

Continuing to take roles in big movies between her stage work, Jones followed Erin Brockovich with a turn as one of the residents on land forced to come to grips with the tragic effects of The Perfect Storm (2000). Back on summer movie screens two years later in two heavily hyped releases, Jones was one of the many oddly monikered women populating the eccentric female universe in Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood (2002). In M. Night Shyamalan's spiritual science fiction hit Signs (2002), Jones quietly shined with her gentle yet no nonsense performance as the local cop who gets involved in teasing out the meaning of the crop circles in anguished father Mel Gibson's corn field. Both Soderbergh and Shyamalan would continue to feature her such films as Ocean's Twelve and The Village, as Jones continued to rack up acclaim for her stage work, including a Best Actress Tony in 2005 for John Patrick Shanley's Doubt.

Now in her latest role as the first female president on FOX network's 24, I had the privilege and honor of meeting her at the 24 Premier Party at Club XIV. Who would have thought? My only regret is not having a whole day to spend talking with her because she is a fascinating person.

Here's hoping you get to meet one of your heroes one day.

Wishing you health, hope and happiness.

Big bear hug,

Daddy Dab