Kaye Ballard

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Kaye Ballard
Kaye Ballard publicity photo taken by Maurice Seymour NY in late 1950s for MCA.jpg
Publicity photo late 1950s
Catherine Gloria Balotta

(1925-11-20) November 20, 1925 (age 93)
OccupationActress, singer
Years active1940s–2017

Kaye Ballard (born November 20, 1925) is a retired American musical theatre and television actress, comedian and singer.

Early life[edit]

Ballard was born Catherine Gloria Balotta in Cleveland, Ohio, one of four children born to Italian immigrant parents, Lena (née Nacarato) and Vincenzo (later Vincent James) Balotta. Her siblings are Orlando, Jean, and Rosalie.[citation needed]


Kaye established herself as a musical comedian in the 1940s, joining the Spike Jones touring revue of entertainers. Capable of playing broad physical comedy as well as stand-up dialogue routines, she became familiar in television and stage productions. A phrase her mother had used when Kaye was a child, "Good luck with your MOUTH!", became her catchphrase in her sketches and on television. Ballard made her television debut on Henry Morgan's Great Talent Hunt, hosted by Henry Morgan, a short-lived NBC program, which first aired January 26, 1951. In 1954, she was the first person to record the song "Fly Me to the Moon".[citation needed]

In 1957, she and Alice Ghostley played the two wicked stepsisters in the live telecast of Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella, starring Julie Andrews in the title role. During the 1961–1963 television seasons, Kaye was a regular on NBC's The Perry Como Show as part of the Kraft Music Hall Players, along with Don Adams, Paul Lynde, and Sandy Stewart. In 1962, she released an LP record, Peanuts, on which she played Lucy van Pelt from the comic strip namesake of the album (with Arthur Siegel playing Charlie Brown), and dramatizing a series of vignettes drawn from the strip's archive. In 1964 she had a guest role on The Patty Duke Show, playing a teacher for would-be models. From 1967 to 1969, she co-starred as Kaye Buell, a woman whose son marries her next door neighbor's daughter, in the NBC sitcom The Mothers-in-Law, with Eve Arden playing her neighbor. She also appeared as a regular on The Doris Day Show as restaurant owner Angie Pallucci from 1970 to 1972. She made appearances on the American television game show Match Game. In 1977, she was a guest star on The Muppet Show. She also appeared on the television series Alice, in which she played a kleptomaniac phony medium, as well as Daddy Dearest where she guest-starred opposite Richard Lewis and Don Rickles as a DMV clerk.[1]

Ballard starred on Broadway as Helen in The Golden Apple, introducing the song "Lazy Afternoon". She portrayed Rosalie in Carnival!, Ruth in Joseph Papp's The Pirates of Penzance, and the title role in Molly, an unsuccessful musical adaptation of the popular radio serial The Goldbergs. She created the role of the Countess and closed out-of-town in Marc Blitzstein's Reuben, Reuben, and played Ruth Sherwood in Wonderful Town at New York City Center in 1963.

In Long Beach, California, she played Mama Morton in Chicago and fought with a vacuum cleaner as Pauline in No, No, Nanette. In 1998, she played Hattie Walker in the Paper Mill Playhouse's acclaimed 1998 revival of Stephen Sondheim's Follies.[2] In 2005, she appeared in a road-company production of Nunsense, written by Dan Goggin. The following year, she completed her autobiography, How I Lost 10 Pounds in 53 Years.[2]

In 1995, she was awarded a Golden Palm Star on the Palm Springs Walk of Stars.[3]

She appeared in The Super Mario Bros. Super Show! as "Madam A-Go-Go," a mysterious fortune teller who appears in the episode "Fortune Teller". She also performed with The Fabulous Palm Springs Follies at the Plaza Theatre in Palm Springs, California.[4]

In December 2010, she, Donna McKechnie and Liliane Montevecchi starred in a Santa Fe production of From Broadway with Love, staged at the Lensic Theater.[5]

Ballard was in the 2012 cabaret show Doin' It for Love, which premiered in Austin, Texas, at the historic Paramount Theatre. Starring Ballard and Montevecchi, the cast included Broadway dancer Lee Roy Reams. (The Austin performance benefited the Texas Humane Legislation Network.[6]) On March 9–10, 2012, the show played in Los Angeles. Kaye announced her official retirement in 2015 at the age of 89.[7]



Year Title Role Notes
1958 The Girl Most Likely Marge
1964 A House Is Not a Home Sidonia
1970 Which Way to the Front? Senora Messina
1976 The Ritz Vivian Proclo
1976 Freaky Friday Coach Betsy
1980 Falling in Love Again Mrs. Lewis
1988 Tiger Warsaw Aunt Thelma
1990 Modern Love Receptionist
1990 Eternity Sabrina / Selma
1990 Fate Judy
1998 Ava's Magical Adventure Leona
1998 The Modern Adventures of Tom Sawyer Mrs. Grumpy Old Man
1999 Baby Geniuses Mayor
2000 The Million Dollar Kid Mrs. Crabby
2000 Little Insects Queen Palooma (voice)
2017 Senior Moment Maria Post-production


Year Title Role Notes
1957 Cinderella Portia TV special
1964 The Patty Duke Show Mrs. Selby "The Perfect Teenager"
1967–1969 The Mothers-in-Law Kaye Buell Main role
1968 Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In Guest "1.5"
1970 The Doris Day Show Flossie Moore "Kidnapped"
1970 All My Children Mrs. Remo TV series
1970 Love, American Style Sally "Love and the V.I.P. Restaurant"
1970–1972 The Doris Day Show Angie Pallucci Recurring role
1971 Here's Lucy Donna "Lucy and Harry's Italian Bombshell"
1971 Love, American Style Helen "Love and the Dream Burglar"
1975 The Montefuscos Filomena "Filomena's Visit"
1976 Police Story Nurse Ladue "Officer Dooly"
1977 Alice Seama "The Hex"
1978 The Love Boat Cora Bass 1 episode
1979 The Love Boat Joan Redmond 1 episode
1979 Fantasy Island Elvira Wilson 'Hit Man/The Swimmer"
1980 The Dream Merchants Esther Kessler TV miniseries
1980 Broadway on Showtime Salome "The Robber Bridegroom"
1981 The Love Boat Babe 1 episode
1981 Irene Dotty Busmill TV film
1981 Here's Boomer Sophia "Make 'Em Laugh"
1981 Trapper John, M.D. Beulah Krakowsky "Cooperative Care"
1983 Great Performances Duchess "Alice in Wonderland"
1984 Young People's Specials Mrs. Deluca "That Funny Fat Kid"
1987 The Law & Harry McGraw Angela Calucci "Angela's Secret"
1989 The Super Mario Bros. Super Show! Madame Agogo 1 episode
1989 Monsters Faye Ingram "Rerun"
1989 The Munsters Today Mother Nature "The Not So Great Escape"
1990–91 What a Dummy Mrs. Treva Travalony Main role
1991 The Munsters Today Mother Earth "A-Camping We Will Go"
1993 Daddy Dearest Mrs. Lento "Al vs. DMV"
1994–95 Due South Mrs. Vecchio "Pilot", "They Eat Horses, Don't They?", "Vault"

Stage work[edit]


  1. ^ Daddy Dearest Episode Guide. TV Guide.
  2. ^ a b Ballard, Kaye (2005). How I Lost 10 Pounds in 53 Years. Back Stage Books. pp. 183–185. ISBN 978-0823084784. Retrieved March 26, 2018.
  3. ^ Palm Springs Walk of Stars website Archived 2012-10-13 at the Wayback Machine.; accessed May 3, 2014.
  4. ^ Mitchell, Gordon "Whitey" (2006). Star Walk: A Guide to the Palm Springs Walk of Stars. Palm Springs, California: Hall/Sloane. p. 6; 99. ISBN 978-0-9638683-4-3.
  5. ^ Gans, Andrew (September 1, 2010). "Kaye Ballard, Donna McKechnie and Liliane Montevecchi Set for From Broadway with Love". Playbill. Archived from the original on September 5, 2010. Retrieved March 26, 2018.
  6. ^ "Special show held to benefit the humane treatment of animals". KVUE News. February 5, 2012.
  7. ^ Chicago Tribune, Liz Smith, February 3, 2012.[dead link]

External links[edit]