Spilled Milk: Stritch, A Memory of Elaine

July 18, 2014 1:58 AM

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Spilled Milk: Stritch, A Memory of Elaine

I met her in November 1988. She was guest-starring on an episode of a short-lived NBC television series called Tattinger's. A one-shot playing star Stephen Collins' mother Franny, a seen-it-all former Broadway chorus girl. Cinch casting. And among the first of the many guest-starring tough mama roles that became her bread and butter in the decades ahead.

At the time I was a theatre guy trying to learn what I could about how television is made, hanging out on the set at the generous invitation of Tom Fontana, Tattinger's creator and exec producer. Elaine Stritch was a Broadway legend. Of a certain age, trailing a difficult reputation (drinking, obstr...

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