|Robert Mandan & Marian Mercer
|In the summer of 1963, a professional Actors' Equity company from New York City,
led by Robert Mandan (of TV's Soap and Three's A Crowd) and Marian Mercer (of
many TV shows), came to the Sylvan Amphitheatre, on the Washington Monument
grounds to do the first annual "Shakespeare in the Park." The show was Much Ado
About Nothing, directed by Broadway Tony Award nominee Don Driver (1967 -- for
Marat/Sade.) The show was sponsored by the U.S. Department of the Interior, and
Federal government publicist Joe Carvajal volunteered for the after-hours job of
handling publicity for the show. When the actor playing Friar Francis (a major role)
had a death in his family and had to leave the show, Driver asked Carvajal, whom he
knew to be a local actor, if he would play that part, and Carvajal jumped at the
chance. Members of this group left this show to go on to much bigger and better
things, and that certainly included young Marcia Rodd (click on name below.) Ed
Crowley, featured in this show (in the role of Dogberry), went on to a film career too.
Photo by Marvin Wurts
|Robert Mandan, et al, in the TV comedy, Soap.