A TRIP TO CHINATOWN
I think I was always secretly in love with Gaby Rodgers. I first saw her on television in Omnibus in the 1950's. She played a fey young girl in Jean Giraudoux's The Apollo of Bellac, and I was enchanted. Later, after I had met her in real life, I was even more enchanted. To me, she seemed the epitome of glamour. It didn't matter that she was married to the songwriter Jerry Leiber. With his partner, Mike Stoller, Jerry had written Hound Dog and several other early Elvis Presley hits. By his mid thirties, the same age as myself, he had already amassed a small fortune, something I had most definitely not accomplished.
We were friends for a long time. Gaby and Jerry had been investors in Red Eye of Love. When I was running the Maidman Theatre, I had attempted, unsuccessfully, to produce Frank O'Hara's Try! Try! with her in the leading role. Even after I had moved to Nantucket we kept in touch.
But then, on a visit to New York, in the early sixties, I had an overwhelming desire to see her again. MORE...