By Dave Donnelly

Tuesday, April 3, 2001

Family and friends
keep Simpsons busy

RAN into Jack and Ann Simpson at the opening of "Steel Magnolias" at Diamond Head Theatre. They'd just bid aloha to their son, Jim, his wife, Sigourney Weaver, and their 3-year old granddaughter, who'd left for L.A. following the youngster's birthday. It was their second goodbye to Sigourney in the past couple of weeks. They'd been visiting here and she flew to the mainland to present an Oscar at the Academy Awards, then returned to finish their planned stay ... Both of Jack and Ann's sons have nothing but daughters, prompting Jim to apologize for not keeping up the family name. "Oh, well," deadpanned Jack, "With Bart and O.J., how many more Simpsons do we need in this world?" ... That same day, Ann had her weekly luncheon with Marie Lord, widow of "Hawaii-Five-O" star Jack Lord, at Hoku's. Marie is very frail these days, and Ann remains the loyal soul she can turn to weekly for her moral and social support.

AS for "Steel Magnolias," there were some marvelous moments and juicy tidbits in the humorous Southern-based dramedy, though on opening night there were obvious moments where some of the actresses forgot their lines. The ending was moving, however ... If there was any doubt in your mind that Indiana is the basketball capital of the nation, note that the two schools that played for the NCAA Women's Championship, Notre Dame and Purdue, sit 108 miles apart in the Hoosier State. Thanks to the winning Irish's Kelley Siemon, there's a local angle, since her mom was Punahou (and Stanford) grad Dawn Donnelly, no relation, daughter of retired isle hotelman Howard Donnelly. Her dad is another ex-Stanfordite, ex-Minnesota Viking all-pro linebacker Jeff Siemon...

Buck and wing it

DISC jockey Mike Buck had a contest last week where listeners were to call in to answer his question as to Elvis Presley's "last real hit," which premiered on that date in 1972. Lots of calls, all with wrong answers. Then he gets a call from a guy in Maui whose guess came in the form of his singing, "In the Ghetto." He was flabbergasted when Buck told him he was wrong. It turns out the reason the guy sang so well was that he was Glen Campbell, who was here on vacation. Buck gets him to sing a few bars of, "By the Time I Get to Phoenix." The singer told Buck he has fond memories of performing here for promoter Tom Moffatt.

THE Jabberwocks, an a cappela group from Brown University, guested on the Perry & Price radio show from the Hanohano Room Saturday and sang "Cheeseburger in Paradise," but the eatery didn't send any over. One local connection: Punahou alum Jason Doles is one of the group and helped coordinate this, their first tour to Hawaii.

Mime your manners

QUITE the opposite of the Jabberwocks is famed French mime, Marcel Marceau, who'll be attending the fifth annual French Festival of Hawaii in October ... And a man with only slightly more to say these days, former V.P. Al Gore, on spring break from Columbia, where he's teaching a journalism class, vacationed in Kona with wife Tipper and spoke to the London Life group at the Hilton Waikoloa, where the Gores swam in the lagoon and enjoyed a spa treatment.

Dave Donnelly has been writing on happenings
in Hawaii for the Star-Bulletin since 1968.
His columns run Monday through Friday.

Contact Dave by e-mail:

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