• Christopher Hopkins

Happy Birthday, Liza Minnelli! Alive and Kicking at 68

I suppose it’s a cliche’ that I’m a Liza fan. And I am a Judy fan. Still I find perseverance in the face of adversity an admirable quality to which so many can relate. Liza is a survivor and in great pain from arthritis and degenerative discs and who knows how many replaced parts she stood on the red carpet with her signature sense of style. Then was wafted with criticism and tabloid speculation. As if that was anything new.

I met Liza’s sister Lorna many years ago at the Burt Reynolds Dinner Theater in Jupiter Florida. I had traveled with a choreographer friend and Lorna was performing along with Alice Ghostly and Carol Burnette’s daughter Carrie Hamilton. As fate would have it we all had dinner after the show and I sat next to Lorna. I admired her bracelet.

“It was my mother’s,” she said casually.

I could hardly contain myself. I quietly excused myself to call my mother, who was sound asleep.

“Mom. I’m sitting across from Burt Reynolds, and Judy Garland’s daughter just showed me Judy’s bracelet !” I whispered.

“Well, take a picture!”

“No. I can’t do that but I just had to tell someone.”

And that was as close to Liza and Judy that I ever came. One degree. Enough for me.

When I saw her at the Oscars I had to think what she’s been through and the terribly mean spirited media attention she also received. I thought she looked great. Ok, maybe she could have given some lift to her lady pillows, but other than that, I liked her look. It made me take a look back to what power she still has to continually to break the barrier of having to please no one. Just her audience and herself. That inspires me.

So to Liza, at 68 years old today. Happy Birthday.

Take a look!


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