winner (1990) and five-time Emmy nominee Jayne Meadows' performance in Neil Simon's Lost
in Yonkers was called a "triumph," "superb," "the performance of
a lifetime," by the critics and won the 1993 Drama-Logue Award for Best Performance
by a Stage Actress in a drama. With her husband, Steve Allen, she recently performed
A.R. Gurney's two-character play, Love Letters, in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Salt Lake
City, and Hawaii.
Jayne's career is the stuff dreams are made of -- a Broadway comedy
star in her teens -- a film dramatic actress performing opposite the likes of Hepburn,
Niven and Peck -- a television star with innumerable prestigious dramatic and comedy
roles as well as five television series: "I've Got A Secret"
(CBS - 7 years), "Medical Center" (CBS - 3 years), "Meeting of
Minds" (PBS - 4 years), "It's Not Easy" (ABC) and a featured
recurring role on the CBS TV comedy series, "High Society" for which
she received an Emmy nomination (1995).
Throughout, Jayne has enjoyed extraordinary critical acclaim and has
received many honors, including, most prominently, the American Book Award 1988, her five
Emmy nominations (1979, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1995) a Grammy nomination (1985) and the 1990
prestigious International Platform Association Award for her one-woman show, Powerful
Women in History, with which she toured the United States for six years.
She received the Susan B. Anthony Award for her
contribution in portraying women in positive roles, and in 1981 was presented with the
first award given by the National Organization for Women for her TV portrayal of Ms.
Anthony. She is also the recipient of several Doctor of Humane Letters degrees from
As a teenager, Jayne made her debut on Broadway in the comedy Spring
Again, and went on to star in six more Broadway shows. However, it was the
Broadway hit The Gazebo (opposite Walter Sleazak) that established Jayne as a top
comedienne. She had been called to Hollywood to begin a successful film and
television career and her return to Broadway in the revival of Kaufman and Hart's classic Once
in a Lifetime was met with rave notices.
|Please visit the official
Web site of Jayne by clicking below:
Be sure to visit the official Web site of Jayne's sister, Audrey
Meadows by clicking below:
Hollywood established Jayne, the Broadway
comedienne, as Jayne, the serious dramatic actress, in such films as: Undercurrent,
with Katherine Hepburn; David and Bathsheba, with Gregory Peck; Lady in the
Lake, with Robert Montgomery; Enchantment, with David Niven; The Song of
the Thin Man, with William Powell and Myrna Loy; Fat Man, with Rock Hudson; Dr.
Kildare, with Lionel Barrymore and Luck of the Irish, opposite Tyrone Power
-- to name a few.
In recent years she has been in such box office hits as: City
Slickers (Billy Crystal's mother); City Slickers II (Billy Crystal's
mother), Casino, with Steve Allen and Joe Pesci; Robert Altman's Player;
Norman is That You? with Pearl Bailey; College Confidential, with Steve
Allen; and Murder by the Numbers, with Shari Belafonte.
On television she starred in virtually all the prestigious dramatic programs
of the Golden Age of Television: Hallmark Hall of Fame, Pulitzer Prize
Playhouse, Studio One, General Electric Theater, U.S. Steel
Hour, Robert Montgomery Presents, the DuPont Show of the Week and Kraft
During all the above activity, Jayne managed to appear as a regular
panelist on CBS's top-rated I've Got a Secret for seven years, a popular program
consistently rated one of the top ten prime-time shows for the duration of her tenure.
I've Got a Secret made her a household name and the second
highest-rated actress on the CBS network after Lucille Ball.
Among her dramatic credits are: four years on the award-winning Meeting
of Minds, for which she co-wrote and performed the epic characters Marie Antoinette,
Cleopatra, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Catherine the Great, Susan B. Anthony, Margaret
Sanger, and the 90-year-old Florence Nightingale (Emmy nomination, 1979); two
episodes on St. Elsewhere (Emmy nomination, 1987); Murder She Wrote, Sisters,
and Medical Center (three years).
A few of her Movies-of-the-Week include Alice in Wonderland (as the
Queen of Hearts for CBS), Hawaiian Honeymoon (Disney-NBC), Bob Hope's Nice, Deadly Weekend
(NBC), Ten Speed and Brownshoe (ABC), the James Dean Story (CBS -- as Hedda Hopper), Miss
All American Beauty (CBS). Miss Meadows also was the co-host with Arthur Godfrey of
the first two years of the Miss Universe pageant.
Jayne's television comedy career has been equally full with multiple appearances on
the Red Skelton, Steve Allen and Milton Berle shows, as well as appearances with Bob Hope
and Sid Caesar.
Jayne, also an accomplished writer in several media, wrote the original story
for a segment of Fantasy Island, and her first play, The Eternal Bed, was produced at the
Stop-Gap Theater in Los Angeles. Carte Blanche magazine published a column under
Jayne's byline for five years.
Jayne and her talented and versatile husband, Steve Allen, appeared together in concert in a wide variety of venues, from Las Vegas to Carnegie