United Press International, February 24, 1960
Peggy Lee Back to Acting: Set for G. E. Theater Stint
Singer Peggy Lee, whose acting talent went unused after a debut that earned an Oscar nomination, goes back to acting next month on TV.
The pretty blonde vocalistís brush with Academy Award honors came when she played an alcoholic in Pete Kellyís Blues.
But as happens in a Hollywood that often has a knack for not remembering good performances, screen roles passed Peggy by and she went on singing for her bread and butter.
Now, however, Peggy feels itís time for another dramatic debut, only this time the medium is TVís G. E. Theater instead of movies.
Peggy talked about the dramatic part of her career at a Capitol recording studio as she prepared to join a full string orchestra cutting a new album of songs.
Sipping a bit of lemon juice and chewing on as throat lozenge, Peggy said she planned to follow up the TV drama with a stage show later this year.
"I donít intend to let acting drop this time," she said. "I should have continued it more closely after making the Kellyís picture."
Miss Lee left to enter the recording booth for a rendition of "As You Desire Me," only to take a "break" a short time later when she decided her vocal cords werenít in the mood for singing.
Sitting in the control room with a hot lamp placed against her throat to relax the cords, Peggy said, "Iíve got more of a challenge coming from acting than from singing."
"You know, I never wanted to sing just to make a living. I sing because I love it. Itís most important to me that I have a good time singing.
Looking into the future at her chances of making a hit as an actress, she said confidently, "I think there is acceptance for me as a dramatic actress.
"Of course, Iíve got lots to learn and Iíll have to find out just how good I can be at this. After the TV show is done, Iíll be looking for critical opinion. This is a whole new world for me after all those years."
Recalling how she dropped the ball in not pursuing the dramatic roles after Kellyís, she said, "I really think it was a shame I didnít follow it up. Now, itís like starting all over again.
"Even if the reviews arenít too good this time, Iíll keep trying," adding with a wry smile as she headed back to the recording microphone, "of course if itís really bad, maybe I should leave it alone."