Show and Tell Hawai'i

Remembering Liz Taylor, and her violet eyes

March 23rd, 2011

Violet eyes. Twinkly, bright purple eyes.
That’s the lasting memory I have of Elizabeth Taylor, the iconic Hollywood actress, who died today of congestive heart failure at Cedars-Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles. She was 79.
I saw those incandescent, sparkling eyes in person when Taylor starred on Broadway in a 1981 revival of “The Little Foxes,” the Lillian Hellman drama, a role that earned her a Tony nomination for Best Actress in a play. She didn’t win, but she won in my heart.
The play was performed at the Martin Beck Theatre, which became a mecca for her Hollywood pals, who flocked to see her.
For 123 performances, she was a magnet on the Great White Way!
Take the night I was there; I arrived early, sat in orchestra perhaps six or seven rows from the stage, and was able to witness a Broadway Event. First Hollywood couple to stroll into the row: actress Jane Powell (star of such films as “Royal Wedding” and “Seven Brides for Seven Brothers,” and a bridesmaid for Taylor’s first marriage) and her husband, who took the pair of seats to the left of my wife and me; a few minutes later, who should traipse in, quickly attracting folks with pens to get their Playbill signed, but actor Robert Wagner and his actress wife, Natalie Wood, who claimed the seats to my immediate right.
Imagine how exciting it was, to be in the midst of such luminaries.
I knew that Powell and the Wagners were pals with Taylor; I worked up courage to tell Wagner, “You must be accustomed to this (autograph seekers),” as he signed a Playbill of a fan. By then, spectators in the balcony recognized the celebs in orchestra, and politely turned and waved to the fans above. (This was several years after he starred in TV’s “It Takes a Thief,” and three years into what would be a six-year run in “Hart to Hart”).
To see Liz Taylor, the quintessential queen of the silver screen, made “The Little Foxes” a phenom. To be among her dear pals made it one of the moments I shall cherish forever.
Oh yeah; after a standing ovation, the Hollywood couples went backstage to Taylor’s dressing room, as we ventured to a late dinner to relive the memory of seeing Taylor.
And, of course, talk about her remarkable violet eyes.

5 Responses to “Remembering Liz Taylor, and her violet eyes”

  1. Issac Maez:

    I can't believe Elisabeth Taylor is dead. It's very sad day not only for her fans but every movie fans also. She was one of greatest actress of all times. RIP Dear Elisabeth.

  2. AJ McWhorter:

    Burton and Taylor would visit the islands periodically, sometimes to see Liz's brother Howard who lived on Kauai.

  3. tuppar:

    Elizabeth Taylor has been around since I was a child, we all grew up with her. She had divorces, failed marriages, bad health starting from her fall when she was 12 in National Velvet, and broke her back 5 times. She suffered from scoliosis , in later years (wheelchair), and was in constant neckpain. Through it all she was a great mother, humanitarian, and was able to laugh at herself. She was also one of the most beautiful woman ever (violet eyes & double row of eyelashes).

  4. steam:

    RIP Elizabeth Taylor. Would like anyone great inside ecstasy

  5. buy silver:

    s eyes what color were they again? Elizabeth Taylor bewitched Hollywood with her violet eyes then held millions captivated for decades with her sheer screen power and the news-making swings of her outsize personal life. - Liz had radioactive charisma centered by those violet eyes which as a friend notes look violet even in black and white. - Her films werent the point... own generation felt an almost parental concern in reading about her .later travails. - ...Taylor stunned the world with her girlish beauty as a child actress in National Velvet -- who had ever even seen or even imagined violet eyes? - Elizabeth Taylor was the last of the Hollywood greats and a fantastically charming woman.

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