Thursday, May 31, 2001

Debbie Reynolds pops up for season finale




By Erin Kosnac
The Cincinnati Enquirer

Debbie Reynolds
Debbie Reynolds
        Debbie Reynolds has danced with Gene Kelly in Singin' in the Rain.She has acted her way to an Oscar nomination for The Unsinkable Molly Brown. She has appeared in a recurring role on TV's Will & Grace.

        This weekend, she will take the stage with the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra.

        In a telephone interview, Ms. Reynolds talked about today's music scene, her career and her favorite activities.

        Question: What do you think about today's popular music scene?

        Answer: I don't like rap so I don't watch it, and I don't like lot of the lyrics. I don't think they're a good influence on the young generation of America. But if you're talking about Elton John or Sting or performers like that, that's different. But as far as rap tunes overall, I don't like the lyrics. I don't like the subject matter.

        Q: What do you think of all of today's boy bands? Does it remind you of the popularity of the Beatles?

        A: I think the Backstreet Boys are very good. I think music just repeats itself. We've had the Jacksons, the Osmonds. Young girls always like to have someone good-looking to look at, and I don't blame them. They have Ricky Martin today. Why not look at someone talented and sexy?

        Q: What artists do you think it would be fun to perform with?

        A: I think it would be fun to perform with Tina Turner and Bette Midler. They're both a tad crazy like me. I like performing with people who are funny and always a tad crazy and a little wild.

        Q: What do you think aboutESPN Radio using your song “Good Morning” from Singin' in the Rain on one of its shows?

        A: Lots of stations play that song because it's a really good song. It wakes people up and says the right things. It's an upper. I think it's a good choice. If I had a radio show, I'd play it.

IF YOU GO
   Who: Debbie Reynolds, performing with the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra.
   When: 8 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
   Where: Music Hall, 1243 Elm St. Over-the-Rhine.
   How much: Tickets $16-$44.50. 381-3300; www.cincinnatipops.org; in person at the CSO sales office in Memorial Hall, 1229 Elm St., or the Music Hall box office the night of the concert. Students can purchase up to two tickets for $10 with a valid student ID 45 minutes before the concert.
        Q: If Hollywood was going to make a movie about your life, what actresses would you want to play you?

        A: A lot of the actresses today are not musical, so they would have to audition. There are many who could play the acting role, but there were so many musicals with singing and dancing then.

        Meg Ryan would be darling as a young Debbie Reynolds. Then there's Cindy Williams and Crystal Bernard from Wings.

        In New York, there's a lot of great talent on the stage there — Bernadette Peters, Reba McEntire, who just finished in Annie Get Your Gun.

        They'd have to get talented people who can sing and dance. There's not a lot of those around who I know about. Anyway, I wouldn't be around right now if they were making my life story.

        Q: Is there anything in your career that you would still like to accomplish?

        A: I've been in the business for 52 years, and I've fulfilled all my goals. I've been on Broadway. I did The Unsinkable Molly Brown. I've made over 50 films. I played the mother on Will & Grace. I've really fulfilled all my dreams as far as performing goes. I like to perform, and I'll perform as long as I'm able to.

        Q: What do you like to do when you aren't performing?

        A: Well, I'm always touring and performing. The only time I have left is to visit with my granddaughter Billie Catherine. We play tennis, and we tap dance, and we ride bicycles, and we play pick-up sticks. I spend time with my children, too.

        Q: What are some of your favorite movies that you've seen?

        A: I don't see a lot of movies. I mostly work in the evening, and I'm on the stage at 7 o'clock. I'm really very busy. I read a lot of books. When I see movies, I'm usually in my hotel and they have movies to rent. I don't like war movies so I skip all of those. I can't really even say I've had too many favorite movies.

        Q: You said you read a lot of books. What are some of your favorites?

        A: My daughter (actress and author Carrie Fisher) always gives me all the books she wants me to read to keep up with some of the writers she enjoys. I'd have to ask her for their names. I just finished Liz Smith's book. I like biographies of all the different famous people. I've read every one on all the Kennedys and every one on any movie star who has ever lived.

       



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