For my fourth installment of Diva Friday, let’s discuss the fabulous Dee Hoty, shall we?
You want a leading lady with dazzling cheekbones and flawless poise? Dee’s your gal. Furthermore, she has a leading lady belt, and knows how to sell it.
Hoty made a name for herself in City of Angels, playing the vamptress cougar Alaura Kingsley/Carla Haywood. (Did you hear they’re making a movie of the Cy Coleman/David Zippel/ Larry Gelbart musical? Exciting!) She then received a Tony nomination for her quintessential leading lady performance in The Will Rogers Follies as Betty Blake. (This led to the torrid affair with Follies co-star, Keith Carradine, but you didn’t hear that from me!)
Hoty and Carradine in The Will Rogers Follies:
(I wish I could find the video of her performance of “No Man Left for Me” from Follies. It’s a knockout!)
Among her other credits, she was zesty Miss Mona in the flop musical sequel to The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas — The Best Little Whorehouse Goes Public. Amazingly, she received a Tony nom for that flop, as well as a Tony nom for her role as Vi in Footloose, proving the time-tested quality of any true Broadway Diva: The ability to spin sh*t into gold.
However, my favorite role of Hoty’s, and the one that brought her to my attention, was her fairly definitive take on Phyllis Stone in Stephen Sondheim’s Follies at New Jersey’s Papermill Playhouse. Her “Could I Leave You” — one of the best “kiss my ass” songs ever — is flawless.
Ooh, how icy! And watch those cheekbones working overtime!
In addition to her Broadway credits, Hoty’s done many grand leading lady roles regionally, including a starring turn in Mame at Seattle’s Fifth Avenue Theatre:
Getta load of that dress!
And Grizabella in Cats at PCLO (skip to 1:15):
And now: She’s returning back to Broadway in the highly anticipated revival of Bye Bye Birdie as Mrs. MacAfee! Honestly, the casting is rather uninspired to me, what with the charming, yet bland, John Stamos in the lead and Roundabout producing it. But…Dee, it’s great to be back on the stage again!