Elizabeth Hubbard Minds Her Business
By Jack Gaver, UPI Drama Editor
Los Angeles Times
June 21, 1968
NEW YORK - Almost constantly busy with stage and television assignments during her career, beautiful Elizabeth Hubbard has had little personal experience with that chronic ailment of the actor - unemployment. But she has no illusions about the profession.
"You need courage to be a performer, and you need guts to keep doing things, to keep at it," she said in her dressing room at the Brooks Atkinson Theater between two performances of "Joe Egg" on a matinee day.
"Some kids asked me what they should do to become actors. The first thing I said was 'don't do it,' and I mean that.
"It's a very hard and shrinking profession, so it had to be an addiction for you to stick to it. Everyone says I have been lucky because I never stopped working. But I have not always done the kinds of things I wanted to do.
"However, I have always kept at it. I always have my work, and I have done a great many different things. You have to do that - really grab every opportunity and struggle."
Miss Hubbard, who has the role of a rather nasty character, Pamela, in the successful drama about a couple burdened with a spastic child, is better known to the public - the very large public of television - as the sweet, competent and kindly Dr. Althea Davis of NBC's daytime serial, THE DOCTORS.
This schedule of eight theater performances weekly and taping the five half-hour video episodes a week naturally makes Miss Hubbard one of the busier players in town. She said she copes because she is well organized, is a quick study of dialog and conducts her affairs in a perfectly logical manner.
"Actually, the role of Pam in the play is almost like a vacation. I don't come on until the second act, for one thing. And it is a rather one-dimensional part that doesn't take much out of me. If it called for a great deal of emotional acting, as does the part of Althea in the television show, it would be too much to do both at the same time. The situations in THE DOCTORS change constantly, and the demands on Althea are considerable."
Miss Hubbard is a native of New York who has been in professional show business only six years. But in that time she has had prominent roles in both dramas and musicals, and she wouldn't mind trying to conquer another field, motion pictures. She once wanted to be an opera singer, but she gave that up.
"The only thing that makes the theater really wonderful and important," she said, "is that communal thing that happens on both sides of the footlights when people care about what is on the stage. There is a catharsis that makes you feel clean and wonderful. You have to concentrate in the theater - the player is forced to share with the audience and vice versa.
"The good thing about 'Joe Egg' is that it is a serious play about a serious subject that establishes this rapport with audiences. There are too many musicals today. Some of them start with a good idea but wind up with nothing. I like things with real life and real emotion."