This was Eve Arden's advice for actors trying to get their start on TV
Eve Arden was best known for her role as the sweet and smart Miss Brooks from the 1965 series Our Miss Brooks. She was everyone's favorite teacher but had absolutely no teaching experience in the real world — she was just that good at acting.
Before the hit TV series premiered, Our Miss Brooks existed on another platform: radio. It began as a radio broadcast on CBS from 1948 to 1957 and was written by Al Lewis.
Within the first eight months of the radio show, Our Miss Brooks had landed several honors and a whole lot of recognition across the nation. Because of the popularity of Our Miss Brooks the show was made into a TV series starring Eve Arden.
With all of her success and with years of having a starring role across multiple platforms, it's no wonder Arden had a thing or two to say in a 1954 interview with The Evening Sun.
"Here's my advice to the thousands of boys and girls who want to become TV performers: Stay away from New York or Hollywood," Arden said. "Start on radio in some small-town and attempt only then to go into television."
Arden said that although radio is easier to have a big break in, being a star on a radio show still had its unique set of challenges.
"Too many beginners consider only the glamour of acting and forget that hard work is necessary to get ahead," Arden said. "However, in small town local outlets those with less experience have a better chance to break in."
Arden said that many upcoming actors don't realize the hard work it takes to make it in Hollywood. She said people who are discovered by being plucked out of their everyday lives often struggle to find work down the road.
She believed that starting on radio would solidify a young actor's place in the entertainment industry.
After being Miss Brooks on the radio broadcast until 1957 and then joining the TV series in 1956, Arden had started to believe she had become Miss Brooks off-screen, too.
Even the state officials of New Mexico loved the way she taught onscreen so much that they gave her a license to teach in the state — even with no real teaching experience. Through her time on both mediums, she was able to find the voice of Miss Brooks, and with little to no rehearsal — just the way she liked it.
"Our TV group works little in comparison with others because I don't believe in over-rehearsing comedy," Arden said. "That destroys spontaneity. Actually, we don't need much practice because we have worked together so long."
Between the radio show, press and the TV series, many fans believed that Arden was just like Miss Brooks in real life. However, Arden said she and Miss Brooks were very different for many reasons.
"And though Miss Brooks is no dope, I like to think that I am a little more hep than she is," Arden said.
From a successful radio show to a successful TV show, Arden worked hard for what she had and she encouraged you to do the same.
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