Center to Honor Carpenters: Musician Richard Carpenter has pledged $1 million toward an endowment for a new Performing Arts Center at his alma mater, California State University, Long Beach, campus officials announced Monday. The university said other entertainment industry figures have also indicated their intention to fund the endowment, which will honor Carpenter, 48, and his late sister, Karen, for their contributions to commercial music. A newly constructed theater on the campus will be named the Richard and Karen Carpenter Performing Arts Center, pending approval in January from the Cal State Board of Trustees. The siblings, known worldwide as the Carpenters, were music majors at Cal State Long Beach in the mid-to-late 1960s, where they performed as members of the University Choir and represented the campus on the nationally televised competition “Your All-American College Show.” They won three Grammy Awards before the death of Karen Carpenter in 1983 from an eating disorder.
Reviews Mixed for ‘Kentucky Cycle': As expected, reviews of the Broadway opening Sunday of Robert Schenkkan’s epic, six-hour play “The Kentucky Cycle” were mixed, with critics lauding the Pulitzer Prize-winning author’s intentions while giving less enthusiastic reviews to the play itself. New York Times critic Frank Rich said the saga about 200 years of Kentucky history is “best enjoyed as a melodramatic pageant, and an entertaining one until it turns pedagogical when its story reaches the 20th Century.” Rich added that the play’s predictability in which all rich, white folks are bad while minority groups are always the victims makes viewers minds “shift into P.C. autopilot.” More enthusiastic was the New York Post’s Clive Barnes, who said: “Take this ‘Kentucky Cycle’ too solemnly as high art and you might be disappointed. But take it as entertainment, as writing that has no particular profundity other than the text of a good yarn and the subtext we ourselves can bring to it, and you should have a good time.” New cast member Stacy Keach, who was not seen in the Los Angeles production at the Mark Taper Forum in 1992, received unanimous positive notices from the critics.
Cable Takes Most Kids’ TV Nods: The networks took only one of eight prizes in this year’s Ollie Awards, which recognize excellence in children’s TV. Given by Chicago’s American Center for Children’s Television, the winners were ABC’s “CityKids"; PBS’ “Reading Rainbow"; the syndicated “Beakman’s World,” seen on the Learning Channel; “Doug” and “Roundhouse,” both from Nickelodeon; “Mark Twain and Me” and “The Earnest Green Story,” both from the Disney Channel"; and “Home Turf,” from San Francisco’s KRON-TV.
Pfeiffer, Kelley Wed in Santa Barbara: Actress Michelle Pfeiffer, 35, and TV writer-producer David Kelley, 37, were married in Santa Barbara over the weekend in a hush-hush ceremony. The nuptials, performed by a Presbyterian minister, also included the christening of Pfeiffer’s 8-month-old adopted daughter Claudia Rose, who was given her new father’s last name. In September, Pfeiffer had told friends that she and Kelley wouldn’t wed until the spring.
Streisand Won’t Do Pay-Per-View: It looks as if Barbra Streisand’s reported $20-million take for her two New Year’s concerts at Las Vegas’ new MGM Grand is quickly dwindling to a lesser amount. Although Streisand was to receive a large chunk of the engagement’s proceeds from a live broadcast on pay-per-view television, she has reportedly now opted to have her own team tape the show, for possible airing later on network TV or on home video. According to the Hollywood Reporter trade publication, Streisand decided against the more lucrative pay-per-view option because she wanted to be able to review the tape and make changes rather than having it air live.