"The Hardest-working Middle-aged Man in Show Business"
According to his press kit, Murray Hill,
"'the hardest-working middle-aged man in show business,' is a
50-year-old magnanimous singing, dancing schticking throwback to the
comedic entertainers of yesteryear. Casting a gimlet eye on the
audience through his trademark tinted aviator glasses and squished into
one of his vintage polyester 52-portly suits, Murray can hurl a
good-natured zinger and schmooze the dames with the best of 'em."
One of NYC's most popular emcees, Murray took a moment out of his busy schedule to chat with us about his life in show biz.
Eros Zine: So, how did you get to be the "hardest working middle-aged man in show business"?
Murray Hill: I love to work, there is nothing better than feeling the
hotlights and hearing the kids laugh and forget about their troubles. I
got the name from doing so many gigs, sometimes three in a night,
several times a week. I'm the happiest when I'm on stage, so I've got
the stamina of a case of Red Bull....bring it on. I'll probably be
performing with a walker soon, but I'll be there.
EZ: How are the shows going in the new venue, Mo Pitkin's?
MH: I love the new room at Mo's --it reminds me of the old days in the
Catskills. It's a very cozy 65-seater and it's been wonderful to get to
know my audience, if you know what I mean. They've got drinks and great
comfort food --it's been great to bring Saturday nights back to
EZ: Murray, you're a real Casanova! How do you get all the girls?
MH: Damn, if I knew, I'd bottle it and sell it! I think the ladies like
a guy with a little meat on 'em and a big smile. I love the
ladies...they make life worth living. And there is nothing better than
looking out into the audience and seeing a beautiful broad laughing and
having a good time...that's showbiz, kid.
EZ: You've played to so many packed houses. What was your best show ever?
MH: New York has been so good to me, the kids keep coming out to see
me. A real blessing. There have been so many shows, and so many shows I
don't remember. Some of my favorite shows were MCing LeTigre shows at
Bowery Ballroom & The Fillmore in SF, and playing the Plush Room in
SF too. I'd have to say, most of the shows I've been in, hosted,
starred in...I've had a great time. I have a personal rule, I never do
a gig that I wouldn't go to myself.
EZ: What's The Miss L.E.S. Pageant all about?
MH: The pageant is my favorite event of the year, it's my opportunity
to give back to the lesbian community. You see, my sister is a lesbian,
and she didn't feel there were enough fun and entertaining events for
her and her pals. So I came up with a lesbian specific beauty pageant
-- it's been a huge hit, and wild... We get contestants who are off the
wall...anything goes. We are gearing up to do it again this year.
EZ: How bout some dish? What's it like being backstage with those Dazzle Dancers?
MH: Oh geezus...I still have glitter stuck in my suit fabric from
hanging with those kids. Backstage with them is like being backstage at
the ice capades -- queer, queer, queer. You can almost get high just
standing next to them. But these kids have such infectious
energy...they spread joy like only they know how.
EZ: Your bio says you love watching Three's Company. Why's that?
MH: Oh yes....I've seen just about every damn episode. Jack Tripper is
one of my biggest comedic influences. He made even the most ridiculous
moments hilarious. He was one of the most talented physical comedians
on TV...not to mention, he shacked up with two lovely ladies!
EZ: Any plans to move to Vegas or anything?
MH: Not just yet....New York is in my blood. But I hope to retire in
Vegas like my pal Wayne Newtown...wouldn't that be the life! Total
showbiz. Do a few shows in Palm Springs, the Catskills....
EZ: What's next for Murray Hill?
MH: We've got lots of things cooking on the George Foreman grill for
this year. We are trying to get The Murray Hill Show on TV, that's the
biggest fish to fry. Then we are continuing our run in Feb at Mo
Pitkins, every Saturday night, and will do some podcasts and cool new
technology stuff. 2006 is going to be the year for showbiz.
[Written Jan. 2006]