From the deep archives/photo diary: West Coast, 1986

May 28, 2012

I’ve unexpectedly found myself spending a lot of this Memorial Day weekend looking at old pictures and uncovering all kinds of pleasant recollections.

In the summer of 1986, I went on a West Coast road trip with my friend the late Bob Boyle. We ended up in San Diego, but we started out in San Francisco, where I hung out with my playwright friend Stanley Rutherford in the Embarcadero on his lunch break.

From there we drove down the coast, stopping in Big Sur at Nepenthe

Los Angeles was a big destination, and I was eager to see a whole bunch of friends in a short amount of time. So we all met at a Mexican restaurant. I think this was where I first met the poet and artist Gavin Dillard (center), who was then dating my friend the late Dave Whyte (right).

Also at that same dinner were the late Peter Evans (left), a dear friend of mine from New York, and Rick Fouts (right), whom I first met while standing in line at a theater in LA two years earlier.

From there we proceeded to La Jolla where we spent time on Black’s Beach with Dave and Gavin. Gavin took a bunch of great black-and-white photos of us that day, and I got this shot of him.

In those days, I was friends with Des McAnuff, who was artistic director of the La Jolla Playhouse, and I saw shows Des directed there every chance I could get. He and his wife Susan Berman (above) played with the band (the Cadillac Cowboys, below) in a fun mini-concert after William Hauptman’s terrific play GILLETTE, whose cast included a very young Campbell Scott.

The following summer Des directed Linda Hunt as Dolly Levi in a revival of Thornton Wilder’s THE MATCHMAKER.

Linda is a childhood friend of Stephen Holden’s, and I’d gotten to know her a bit over the years through other mutual friends in the theater. Over dinner she told me about her brief torrid affair with Caryl Churchill.

One Response to “From the deep archives/photo diary: West Coast, 1986”

  1. Steve V. Says:

    Is the Peter Evans in your photo the actor who appeared in Streamers in N.Y. and gave other fine performances, some of which I was privileged to witness? Also, I hope you got to see Linda Hunt in Caryl Churchill’s Top Girls at the Public back in the early ’80s. Of several outstanding performances in that production, hers is the one I remember best.


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