My Glamourous Cousin

This is my cousin – Kay Doubleday – even her name was glamourous! Her mother Naomi (who was also a major glamourpuss) was my grandma’s sister. Kay was born in Honduras, and grew up in New Orleans. She was a firecracker! She longed to see the world and found the south too stifling – I can relate! She was the wild child of the family, then I came along…

In 1953 she came to London to attend The Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts. She even stood by the mall to watch the coronation pass by. After RADA she moved to New York and studied under Lee Strasberg and became a member of the Actors Studio. After NYC, she moved to Seattle and was a founding member of Seattle Repertory Theater Company.
She also did film and television. This is a still from her biggest starring role – Mad Dog Coll (1961). She played Clio, the burlesque dancing love interest of Vincent ‘Mad Dog’ Coll played by John Chandler.

But theater was where her heart was. She was very theater “darling”. Larger than life, full of energy and stories. Kay and her husband Archie, also an actor, were heavily involved in Penn States Theater Dept, then eventually joining Denver Theater Company where they were resident actors. The only time I saw her act, was in Denver in Buried Child by Sam Shepherd. I forget the character she played, but all I remember is that it was very twisted. I saw it with my cousin Callie, her daughter, we were like 13. I can see her being very good at playing dark roles. I know she played Nurse Ratchett in One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest. I envied my cousins Callie & Judd growing up in such a bohemian, cultured environment. I looked up to Kay and once begged my mother to let me go live with them. The south was too stifling, there was no culture! I needed to be around culture, plus at the time I thought I wanted to be an actress. Kay and I had a very tumultuous relationship in the end. I was a teenage monster and wreaked havoc on her family during the summer of 1986. In fact when she took me to the airport & and walked me to the gate (pre-terrorism days) – she flipped me the bird in front of everyone! This is my last image of her. At the time I thought she was just overdramatic, but now I see what a nightmare I was. Kay passed away in 1995. I wish I could have gotten to know her as an adult. I know we would have been close, as now I realise how much alike we were. oxo gd

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