Buzz: The Life and Art of Busby Berkeley

By Jeffrey Spivak | Go to book overview

Acknowledgments

I am eternally grateful for the help, support, and advice of the following contributors, who made the writing of Busby Berkeley’s life story a pleasurable experience:

Joe Franklin, for his witty Buzz Berkeley anecdotes and for putting me in touch with Hollywood personages he’s known.

Sybil Jason, for her personal recollections of working with Buzz. His story is balanced and fair thanks in part to Miss Jason’s first-person account.

Carol Jones, Program Director of the Peace Awareness Labyrinth and Gardens, for my personal tour of the magnificent Beaux-Arts mansion once owned by Buzz.

Miles Kreuger, President of the Institute of the American Musical, for his erudition, advice, and passionate adherence to truth.

Michael Kutza, founder and Artistic Director of the Chicago International Film Festival, for relaying humorous anecdotes of Berkeley and Ruby Keeler when they were feted at the festival.

Sandra Joy Lee, Curator, Warner Bros. Archives, School of Cinematic Arts, University of Southern California, and Jonathon Auxier, Curator, Warner Bros. Archives, School of Cinematic Arts, University of Southern California, for providing me access to the hundreds of files in the Berkeley archive.

Patrick McGilligan, the best mentor a biographer could ever ask for.

Susan Murray, my editor, whose suggestions and improvements were invaluable.

Teresa Neff, whose great-great-aunt was Nellie Gertrude Berkeley, for supplying me with the Berkeley family tree.

Dr. Shirley Radlove, for her cheerleading and heartfelt encouragement.

Debbie Reynolds, for clarifying some dim memories of Buzz and singing to me the little ditty quoted in chapter 13.

-ix-

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Buzz: The Life and Art of Busby Berkeley
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Screen Classics ii
  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Acknowledgments ix
  • Prologue 1
  • 1 - Actress and Son 4
  • 2 - In Formation 20
  • 3 - The Show Fixer 27
  • 4 - A Cyclopean Vision 48
  • 5 - The Cinematerpsichorean 66
  • 6 - The Cancerous Tire 123
  • 7 - Post-Traumatic Inspiration 143
  • 8 - Buzz’s Babes 164
  • 9 - Art and Audacity 198
  • 10 - The Stage Debacle 211
  • 11 - Inconsolable 218
  • 12 - One Last at Bat 225
  • 13 - Jumping, Tapping, Diving 235
  • 14 - Out of Sight 257
  • 15 - The Ringmaster 262
  • 16 - Remember My Forgotten Director 266
  • 17 - The Figurehead 272
  • 18 - The Palmy Days 292
  • Epilogue 296
  • On Busby Berkeley’s Memoirs 300
  • Appendix- The Works of Busby Berkeley 303
  • Notes 327
  • Index 353
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