Toni Lamond

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Toni Lamond
Lamond in The Pajama Game (1957)
Lamond in The Pajama Game (1957)
Background information
Birth namePatricia Lamond Lawman
Also known asLolly Legs (nickname)
Born (1932-03-29) 29 March 1932 (age 88)
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Genres, Vaudeville, musical theatre, television, cabaret
Occupation(s)
  • singer
  • actress
  • dancer
  • comedienne
  • writer
InstrumentsVocals
Years active1942–present
Associated actsTommy Trinder, Stella Lamond (mother) Joe Lawman (father), Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra
Websitehttp://www.tonilamond.com

Patricia Lamond Lawman AM, CM (born 29 March 1932), professionally known as Toni Lamond, is an Australian cabaret singer, stage and television actress, dancer, and comedian.[1] She was given the nickname of "Lolly-Legs Lamond" by fellow performer Noel Ferrier after being voted as having the second-best pair of legs in television while appearing on TV show In Melbourne Tonight.[2]

Biography[edit]

Lamond was born in Sydney in 1932, as Patricia Lamond Lawman. She began her professional career at the age of 10 when she sang on the radio while touring with her vaudevillian parents in variety shows, which included her actress mother Stella Lamond and father Joe Lawman. Her first stage performances were at the Tivoli Theatre in Sydney. Her first performances as a leading lady were with English comedian Tommy Trinder in The Tommy Trinder Show in 1952.[3]

She has starred in Australian productions of Oliver!, Annie Get Your Gun, The Pajama Game, and Gypsy: A Musical Fable, and was a regular in a number of 1970s television shows, such as Number 96 and Graham Kennedy's In Melbourne Tonight.[2] She later compèred her own IMT, becoming the first woman in the world to compère a variety television show.[4]

She travelled to the United Kingdom, where she appeared in the British night club circuit and on BBC-TV and BBC Radio. She also recorded two singles for Philips in London.[4] In the mid 1970s, Lamond moved to Los Angeles, where she appeared in musicals and television shows. She debuted on the New York stage with Cabaret at the age of 67. In 1986, she made a small appearance on the American crime series Murder, She Wrote in the episode “Murder in the Electric Cathedral” credited as “Ad-Lib Woman”. On her return to Australia in the mid 1990s, she performed in shows including 42nd Street, The Pirates of Penzance, and My Fair Lady.

In 2007, Lamond featured in Australian film Razzle Dazzle: A Journey into Dance. In April–May 2008, she appeared in an autobiographical one-woman show, Times of My Life (co-written with her son Tony Sheldon), at the Seymour Centre in Sydney.[5]

Lamond has written several autobiographical books, including First Half (1990), Along the Way (2002), and Still a Gypsy (2007). The first book went to the top of the bestseller list in eight days.[6]

In July 2010, Lamond was a headline act in the inaugural Melbourne Cabaret Festival.

She joined the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra with Trisha Crowe, Michael Falzon, Amanda Harrison, Lucy Maunder, Andy Conaghan, and others to record I Dreamed A Dream: The Hit Songs Of Broadway for ABC Classics, released on 21 June 2013.[7] Lamond sang "Send in the Clowns" from Stephen Sondheim's A Little Night Music.

Notable work[edit]

Stage[edit]

Sources: Austage, IBDB

Year Show Role Notes
1957 The Pajama Game Babe Williams Australasian Tour
1959 For Amusement Only Herself Theatre Royal, Sydney
1963 Wildcat Wildcat Jackson Princess Theatre, Melbourne
1966 Oliver! Nancy Australian Tour
1971 Anything Goes Reno Sweeney Richbrooke Theatre, Sydney
1975 Gypsy Rose Australian Tour
1978 Annie Various (u/s Miss Hannigan) USA - Second national tour
1985 Madonna and Child Herself Performed at off-Broadway Theatre, NSW, with Tony Sheldon
1989 42nd Street Maggie Jones Australian Tour
1994 The Pirates of Penzance Ruth Australian tour and 1994 TV movie
1996 My Fair Lady Mrs Pearce Lyric Theatre, Brisbane
1998 Dream Kitchen Betty One-woman play directed by son, Tony Sheldon
1998 Follies Sally Durant Plummer Sydney Opera House
2004 High Society Mother Lord The Production Company
2010 Love, Loss, and What I Wore Various Sydney Opera House

Awards[edit]

Toni Lamond is a recipient of two Logie Awards, including the 1962 Most Popular Victorian Personality. She has received a Variety Club of Australia Award and a Mo Award.[8]

In 1993, she was presented with the Key to the City of Melbourne and in 2000 was included in the Honours List of Women Shaping the Nation.[4]

In 2001, she was awarded the Centenary Medal for "services to the community through the arts".[9] She was made a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) in 2003, "for service to the entertainment industry, and to the community through fundraising for a range of organisations, including the Guide Dog Association of New South Wales and ACT."[3][10]

In 2011, she received the Australian theatre's JC Williamson Award for her contribution to the live performance and theatre industry, alongside fellow actresses Jill Perryman and Nancye Hayes.[11]

In 2014, Lamond received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Equity section of the Media, Entertainment & Arts Alliance. Actors Equity president Simon Burke says: “Toni is a truly legendary Australian performer whose phenomenal career has spanned vaudeville, musical theatre, television, and cabaret. She is also a wonderful human being who has given back to her community, to her colleagues, and to her industry in every way she can."[12]

Personal life and family[edit]

Lamond has a significant pedigree within the Australian performing arts. She is the daughter of Stella Lamond (Homicide and Bellbird) and Joe Lawman, both vaudeville entertainers. Her parents divorced when she was seven and Stella remarried Max Reddy (Homicide). She is a half-sister to singer Helen Reddy, whom she raised as a surrogate mother while their parents were performing.

She married Frank Sheldon in 1954, but in 1966 shortly after a separation, he committed suicide. An addiction to prescription drugs followed, and she was a patient at Chelmsford Private Hospital, where she underwent deep sleep therapy. She overcame and publicly discussed the issue in an episode of The Mike Walsh Show, becoming one of the first Australian media personalities to do so.

Her son is actor and writer Tony Sheldon.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Toni Lamond on IMDb
  2. ^ a b "Toni Lamond". Talking Heads (transcript of interview with Peter Thompson. 17 October 2005.
  3. ^ a b "Toni Lamond". The Arts Centre, Melbourne. May 2003. Retrieved 23 April 2008.
  4. ^ a b c "Toni Lamond". tv.com.
  5. ^ "Hear 'em roar: 'We're sisters, not rivals'". Sydney Morning Herald. 18 April 2008.
  6. ^ "Toni Lamond – A Great Entertainer". ABC Radio National. 9 July 2002.
  7. ^ "I Dreamed a Dream: Hit Songs from Broadway". © 2013 Universal Music Australia Pty Limited. Archived from the original on 8 October 2013. Retrieved 14 June 2013.
  8. ^ "Toni Lamond". School of Arts Cafe.
  9. ^ It's an Honour: Centenary Medal
  10. ^ It's an Honour: Member of the Order of Australia
  11. ^ Wright, Maryann (2 August 2011). "Mary's a perfect Poppins - musical scoops annual Helpmann Awards". News.com.au. News Limited (News Corporation). Retrieved 30 April 2012.
  12. ^ http://www.equityfoundation.org.au/equity-news/toni-lamond-am-honoured-with-lifetime-achievement-award.html

External links[edit]