I often use the word favourite. That’s because many of the people I draw are favourites or appear in favourite productions. In the words of Julie Andrews, ‘these are a few of my favourite things’, which is easier than saying ‘supercalifragilisticexpialidocious’.
Jack Lemmon was a favourite. Well, he still is. They continue to ‘live’ and the Hollywood legend’s only son, Chris has made sure of that with his autobiographical play, A TWIST OF LEMMON, celebrating his famous father. It’s based on his 2006 book ‘A Twist of Lemmon: A Tribute To My Father.’ The forward is written by Kevin Spacey, who credits Jack with his pursuit of acting. He would say, people who do well in this business have an obligation to send the elevator back down to help lift people starting out on the ground floor.”
Obviously Chris has more than a passing resemblance to his dad with the familiar impish grin and other Lemmonesque mannerisms. It’s hard to believe it’s Chris and not Jack onstage,” wrote Jordan Young in the LA Examiner.
He bought his solo show to the St James Theatre in London this month. It’s two hours of stories and anecdotes, a mixture of impersonating his father and being himself, punctuated by jazz standards. “How do you follow in the footsteps of a giant?” he asks the audience as he talks about what it was like to grow up with an internationally loved celebrity and how that impacted on a normal father-son relationship and his own aspirations under the weight of his father’s Oscar-winning heritage.
Described as beautiful, complex and poignant. It’s a touching tribute of a multifaceted yet troubled actor. In her review for British Theatre.Com, Helena Payne wrote, “Lemmon Jr brims with a boundless energy, his story telling is on point. He beautifully portrays Jack as he realises the joy of performing and making people laugh.”
Chris signed this drawing for me at the theatre and wrote me a nice note.