Pamela Sue Martin (artistic director-Interplanetary Theater Group) star of televisions’ Dynasty and Nancy Drew Mysteries has more recently put her focus on theater and writing. In July of 2005 she directed Drawerboy for The New Theater Company of Sun Valley, Idaho. In June of 2002 she directed the regional premier of Proof also for NTC. In January of 2001, she directed a sold out production for The Interplanetary Theater Group of the play Wild Guys by Wreggitt and Shaw also in Sun Valley and Three Viewings by Jeffery Hatcher, for The New Theater Company. Most recently, she directed This Is Our Youth, by Kenneth Lonergin.
As an actress she appeared as Beth in Donald Margulies’ Pulitzer prize winning play Dinner With Friends at the Ensemble Theater of Cincinnati, Ohio in 2001. In Sun Valley she has appeared opposite OBIE award winning actor Bill Raymond in a production of Sam Shephard’s Seduced, starred in Steven Dietz’s Private Eyes and numerous play readings.
Before this she became a familiar face to millions of Americans on the extremely popular show Dynasty, and as Nancy Drew in The Nancy Drew Mysteries.
Born in Westport, Connecticut she entered into show business as a model at age sixteen and she quickly became established as a film actress starring in the Columbia motion picture To Find A Man and subsequently starring in The Poseidon Adventure with Gene Hackman. Along the way she starred in numerous films including Our Time, The Lady in Red, Buster and Billy, and Torchlight, which she also wrote and produced. She also starred in several Movies of the Week and network miniseries including Alfred Hitchcock’s Anniversary Gift, Arthur Hailey’s Strong Medicine and The Saint for the BBC.
Above all she enjoys comedy, has hosted Saturday Night Live, and recently appeared on That 70’s Show.
She has a “WELLNESS” project in development and has been a guest speaker at such events as THE CONSCIOUS LIVING EXPO in Los Angeles, in 2003 and THE WELLNESS FESTIVAL in Sun Valley, 2004.
She has presently written her autobiography THE SPIRIT OF THE MATTER.
Here is a chapter from her forthcoming book-
I’m trying to think if there are any questions lying around that I might easily answer before I “call it a wrap” as they say on a film set. I’ve often been asked if “I miss all the excitement” for example. I think I can project into that projection. In my mind I see the glitzy magazine covers on their racks for the world to see, with the gowns and red carpets, but I know better.
Naturally, my quest for solitude did not find me on the party circuit very often. The main reason was because Hollywood parties simply made me nervous. I felt uncomfortable the minute I walked in the door. I spent some time contemplating this dilemma, and it wasn’t until years later, like so many discoveries I would make, I began to see that I was part of the problem.
I realized that as I walked in those doors, I carried a heavy load of self-judgment, insecurities, and worry, in short, a lot of fear. Was I dressed O.K.? Did people know who I was? Did they hate my show? On and on blabbed the ego. If that wasn’t enough to send me catapulting to the bar, what about picking up on what everyone else was feeling, because I can guarantee you, lots of them felt the same way. That kind of energy is palpable. So, there we’d all be, all the “beautiful” people as bundles of nerves, thrown together. Fun times? I don’t think so.
Over the years, another point of view emerged, one of compassion. I started to have some sympathy for myself and all of the celebrities who were thrown into the fish bowl, expected to show the world how “beautiful” it all was. Oh sure, it’s hard to imagine that some, like Gwyneth Paltrow could ever be nervous about their beautiful selves, and I’m sure there are plenty of exceptional individuals, who have the maturity and self esteem to kick back in public. Still, I suspect, that there are many more in my boat than most of us would ever imagine. So when I see an actor struggling through Letterman, or gracing the cover of the STAR magazine with their breast falling out of their dress, I have sympathy, a lot of it. I even commiserate when I see the so called perfection of the red carpet walk, because I know underneath that there are worries about underarm perspiration, tripping on trains, navigating Joan Rivers, a whole myriad of pitfalls. I also know that a lot of these actors have to show up and sell their films that night, whether they feel like being under the bright lights or not. Don’t ever forget, no matter how shiny and pretty, it’s the entertainment BUSINESS. If nothing else, they sure appear to be obligated to sell those designer dresses!
Since I am well past the adolescent paranoid stage and have enjoyed these last years hidden away, it might be fun to experience it once again from the other side, who knows? I think I’d be guaranteed a better night if I went bowling, though.
It’s the ‘outside in’ thinking that gets me, rather than ‘inside out’. Santa Claus or the Red Carpet do not bring it to me. Excitement comes from within my being when I approach life with an open heart. A beautiful day, the breeze rustling the leaves, my dogs running down my driveway to greet me with boundless love get me excited. A good book can thrill me beyond any of the hundred DYNASTY scripts I used to read. We all succumb to thinking that the flash is where the excitement comes from. I did, as I watched that glamorous Shirley Jones. But think again. I lived it, and I wouldn’t trade any of my days today for “the old days”. I think excitement is an inside job.
‘“Are you making any movies lately?” That’s a good one.
Do I LOOK like I’m making a movie?’ I think as I stand in line at the grocery store emptying out my cart, checking off one of a million errands on my daily list. I do find it interesting that after all these years people still pop the question, especially when they see me schlepping around town like any other suburban housewife. Except I’m beyond suburban baby, mowing my lawn with the John Deere, and snow plowing through the blizzards. One can adopt a little of the old prairie settlers out here if one wants. Strong, rugged, women with lines of living etched around their faces.
There may be a lot of people wandering around this town who are indeed making movies, given all the movie stars who have bought homes here in the last decade. They don’t have so many lines on their faces though, and I don’t see them very often because I suspect they are too busy making movies.
Me? You can catch me lying a breath away from someone in Richard Odem’s yoga class on any given week day. Thanks Richard, for twenty years of allowing my insane mind to quiet down on the floors of your class.
On any given Sunday I can be found at Light on the Mountains Spiritual Center where I have been attempting to grasp (from the United Centers of Spiritual Living) this concept that Spirit (Or God if you will) is in each and every one of us, everywhere present, and that we are not just being buffeted about in our lives but rather creating them ourselves from deep within our own being.
It’s a bit daunting to think of my thoughts running the show, especially since I am never too sure of what it is I am supposed to be doing.
I don’t know where it’s all going, what I’ll be doing or where I’ll be doing it. In the greater scheme of life, who does? When I worry about these questions of the unknown I wonder why? Life has always worked out so far hasn’t it? What’s to worry? I’m ALIVE aren’t I?