Kaye Ballard's "Going Out of Business"

Sold-out theatre and standing ovations greet veteran performer

(From left) Carol Channing, Kaye Ballard and conductor David Geist share the stage at Camelot Theatres in Palm Springs.

Photo by Pat Krause


Kaye Ballard presented what she calls her very last performance, “Going Out of Business”, March 11 at the Camelot Theatre in Palm Springs.

When she ended her show, the consensus was: At 88, she is still too good to go out of business.

Ballard, a Ranco Mirage resident, has been performing ever since her youthful start in vaudeville. An opening video reminded the audience of all the times they enjoyed her in night clubs, on television, in films and, best of all, theater.

The video introduction was fun including memories of her long run as co-star on TV’s The Mothers In Law, but she was at her best performing “live” on stage. The sparkle in her eyes, the timing, the songs and chatter all made for a memorable evening of theater, film, and television memories.

The show, a benefit for the Palm Springs Cultural Center, sold out within two weeks of ticket offerings and despite that, people lined up trying to get impossible tickets the night of her performance. Those able to buy early tickets included friends and fans from across the country and Canada who flew to Palm Springs to see Ballard’s farewell performance.

David Geist conducted and Ballard says she is grateful for the creative help of Steven Smith.

Adding to the fun were celebrity friends in the audience Carol Channing, Mimi Hines, Peter Marshall, Alix Korey, Shecky Greene, Bradley James, and Bob Sinn whose brief entertainment gems were unforgettable. Their love for Kaye Ballard was obvious and so were the cheers and standing ovations she received at the end of her performance.

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