HELLO AMERICA!—I’ve known Liza Minnelli since she was 12 years old. Her dad Vincent Minnelli and I were good friends. As a matter of fact, famed producer Arthur Freed took time to introduce us. It was quite an important meeting for me.
However, it became more memorable when I remember shaking the hand of this little girl with long straight dark hair and the eyes of her very famous, legendary mom Judy Garland. Speaking with Liza as always has been very special. She’s a woman of distinction who like her mom is what our industry is all about.
MSJ: How different has life become since you were a youngster chasing after you dad at MGM?
LM: Not very different at all. My life has always been hectic and sometimes absolutely confusing.
MSJ: You haven’t done a major film in quite a long time is this by choice or you simply hasn’t found a script that suits you?
LM: There haven’t been very many stories that really appealed to me. At this point in my life, I need stories of genuine substance. And that’s what people seem to want.
MSJ: Has the ups and downs of your mom’s career affected how you’ve framed yours?
LM: Yes, in a way. I’ve watched how she handled things, generally, and learned that I have to be my own person. After all your career and life is on the line. So, it’s important to make decisions about music, stories on your gut.
MSJ: Has your idea concerning marriage changed very much, especially after a few tries?
LM: Yes, in a way. I’ve got to keep in mind who I’ve decided to spend the rest of my life with. Many guys marry an illusion, they have no idea what the woman is or about. With me, I believe, the men I’ve married was seduced by the image on stage or the face on the cover of an entertainment magazine. But they had no idea who I really am.
MSJ: Since you’ve had a few tries at marriage, have you decided that the ritual is especially not for you? And what kind of man pleases you most?
LM: Oh, I think I could try again. I admit my life as a married woman hasn’t been that impressive but hell, I’ve tried so hard to make that part of my life special. Some how, I haven’t been able to make a lasting relationship with anybody. Momma, had the same problem I think. She was so hungry for love and attention, and in a way I guess I’m the same.
MSJ: What pleases you most about being in the spotlight twenty-four hours a day?
LM: That people respect me for what I do. And when I walk on stage and see their smiles and watch them applaud even before I sing a note, that is the greatest experience ever. I love what I do!
MSJ: You and your sister Lorna Luft who is also a good friend of mine, seem to still support each other in every way. How often do you get together or see each other?
LM: Whenever we are not working or on the road doing a concert or a show. I love my sister! And I’m happiest when I know she and her kids are ok. The time we spend together is very special. When we get the chance to sing together somewhere is the most exciting time of my life. It’s just like having momma there — it’s something we were born to do.
MSJ: Who is Liza Minnelli today?
LM: I’m still the gal who sits in a dressing room somewhere in the world anxiously waiting to hear the cue from a stage manager yell “You got FIVE minutes before curtain goes up, Miss Minnelli!” That’s when I know I’m still alive!
By Michael St John