Diane and I like to support local theater companies so we went to see Tenderly: The Rosemary Clooney Musical. Neither of us knew the life story of Rosemary Clooney (she was a little before our time) so this production that starts with a Rosemary Clooney meltdown during a performance and leads to Clooney going into Rehab surprised us. Using the device of Clooney talking to her psychiatrist, this production uses flashbacks and songs to present the highs and lows of her life. In the production we saw, Debbie Pappas performed convincingly as Clooney. But we were most impressed with Louis Colaiacovo who plays a dozen roles:
psychiatrist, sister, mother, Frank Sinatra, Bing Crosby, and many others. What a versatile actor! The band was wonderful, too. If Tenderly shows up in your neck of the woods, check it out! Are you a fan of any of Rosemary Clooney’s songs? GRADE: B+
“Someone To Watch Over Me”
“Come On-A My House”
“Hawaiian War Chant”
“It’s Only a Paper Moon”
“Count Your Blessings”
“Straighten Up and Fly Right”
“Are You In Love Again”
“I Get Along Without You Very Well”
“Come On-A My House” (Act I Finale)
“I Remember You”
“How About You”
“Hey There”
“Have I Stayed Too Long At the Fair?”
“Mambo Italiano”
“What Are You Doing the Rest of Your Life?”
“This Ole House”


  1. Steve Oerkfitz

    Remember her from when I was a kid. this definitely is not for me. Not my kind of music but glad you enjoyed it. She was George Clooney’s aunt if I remember right.

  2. Deb

    I have one of her greatest hits CDs–she has a wonderful voice, but I was really only familiar with her from “Come on-a My House”, although I seem to recall she was in “White Christmas”–or am I confusing her with someone else. I vaguely recall her in a commercial (paper towels?) when I was younger. Much as my first awareness of Jane Russell was through her Playtex 18-Hour Bra commercials (“We full-figured gals..”), so my first exposure to Rosemary Clooney was through a commercial.

    1. george Post author

      Deb, you’re right about Rosemary Clooney being in WHITE CHRISTMAS. Her career peaked in the 1950s. But once Rock-&-Roll took over the 1960s her singing career was pretty much over. After she dealt with her drug problems, Rosemary Clooney showed up on talk shows and did commercials.

  3. Jeff Meyerson

    Sisters is another good one.

    We heard stories about her volatile marriage to Jose Ferrer from my mother. Apparently, my parents lived near them at one point, and the neighbors would hear his screaming and abuse.

  4. Jeff Meyerson

    We have a Rosemary Clooney CD and a Bette Midler-does-Clooney collection. The latter has a duet on “Sisters” between Midler and Linda Ronstadt.

    1. george Post author

      Patti, Rosemary Clooney had real Star Power. But a bad marriage and changing musical tastes and a “pill” problem wrecked her career.

  5. mary mason

    I remember her from White Christmas and particularly the song “Come on-a My House”. I didn’t know any of the history. If the show comes around here, I’ll try to catch it.

    I remember the song “someone to watch over me” from the movie (I think of the same title) about the beginning of the guide dog program. That movie was a real tear jerker.

    OT There’s going to be a Jimmy Buffett play premiering at the La Jolla Playhouse. and of course, looking forward to the road company of Hamilton, and Something Rotten

  6. Rick Robinson

    When I was a kid, I remember her being on various variety show programs such as Jack Benny Hour, Show of Shows, Perry Como, and many others. Plus of course her being in White Chirstmas, a movie I love, along with Holiday Inn. She had that silky but powerful voice, instantly recognizable. She wasn’t a singer – nor was Paggy Lee and many others – who made the transition to pop when rock became popular. The play sounds interesting.

    1. george Post author

      Rick, we really didn’t know the story of Rosemary Clooney’s life. TENDERLY shows her ups and downs. And, of course, includes a lot of great songs!

  7. mary mason

    I’m remembering seeing the rat pack play after the last Bcon in Toronto. I hope they have something else fun this time.


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