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The Regulars

Wayne Clark

aka "Camera Hog Clark"

He goes by "Duke" now, but to me and the other Dance Party Regulars, he will always be "Wayne." I lost touch with him after I left the show, but he was a close friend of mine during the show. He was one of our group, and hung out with us. I ran into Wayne one time at the 1981 KOFY, channel 20, get together, and we spoke of doing an official reunion, but then we lost touch again.

I was not able to find him for our 1997 reunion because he had moved far away, but, with the help of Regular Wayne Mitchell, I was able to get back in touch with him for our 2004 bash. Unlike some of the other Regulars, Wayne has a good memory, and remembers many of the things that happened on Dance Party, and many of the people who were on the show. Wayne was one of the nice guys who never had a bad thought, never got angry, or lost his composure. He was a very relaxed, friendly, and easy going guy.  He was in the group of Regulars who came aboard about one year after mine; when he auditioned to be a Regular, he danced with Barbara Burrus.

At the present time, Wayne lives in the Northwest with his beautiful wife of 10 years, Marleta. He has 3 children, Erika, age 26, Mark, age 16, and Sheridan, age 14. He also has 2 grandchildren: Noah, age 3, and Maya, age 1. And, true to his nickname, he appeared as an extra in the 1996 film "Dantes Peak." As I heard it, he almost got more camera time than Pierce Brosnan, the star of the movie. As a side vocation, he does the illusion of Elvis "gigs" through out the Pacific Northwest, and makes appearances at birthday parties, office drop-ins, and all sorts of special events. It is a real "kick."

Our common roots, and shared history, make Wayne one of my good friends, and it is with a warm regard that I present my old friend here.

And, here is his remembrance of Dance Party and after. - Manny Interiano

When I think back to those great days when I was on Dance Party, it is like viewing a kaleidoscope of fun memories. I remember many different things, but some things stand out for various reasons. I remember one Saturday Show that had a Hawaiian theme, with the Regulars dressed in Hawaiian clothes. I also remember Mother and son day, and the "Spoolie" lady who did the live commercials on the show for the Spoolie Haircurler Company that was one of our show's sponsors.

I remember meeting many different celebrities when they came on the show to promote their latest record hit and signed autographs for us kids. I have vivid memories of meeting Annette Funicello, Frankie Avalon, Jackie Wilson, Santo and Johnny, Mitch Miller, Crash Craddock, Ronny Hawkins, Rod Lauren, Jimmy Clanton, and San Francisco's own Bobby Freeman.

The dances that were popular at the time were the Bristol Stomp, the Stroll, the Bug, the Calypso, the Swing, and the Mashed Potatoes.

I used to enjoy watching, brother and sister team, Joey and Joanna dance because they were very good dancers. Their mother was a dance instructor and had taught them well. I enjoyed dancing with Noreen Morosi because she was very smooth, and made it look easy.
 

I extend a big "THANK YOU" to Dick Stewart for the Dance Party years. The show has a special place in my heart and not a day goes by that I don't think back to it. Sometimes I hear an old tune, see an old car, or see someone who reminds me of someone on the show, and it triggers a sequence of Dance Party memories in my mind. Life seemed so uncomplicated in those days; my only worry, at that time, was what was I going to wear to the studio that day.

My only other worry was what is my report card going to look like because if I didn't maintain a "C" average, my mother was going to say "no more Dance Party, young man." That was always a great incentive, and I did keep my grades up.

I recall one occasion, when Dick Stewart was interviewing me, right after the Spoolie Lady did her commercial. The problem was that she had not quite finished her commercial and we cut into it before it was over remember this was live television in those days. I went up to her and apologized after the interview, and she gracefully told me "that's OK, and gave me a bag of Spoolie hair curlers.

I remember that when Dick Stewart interviewed me, he seemed so warm and friendly that he was easy to talk to and made the interview very pleasant. I remember telling him right after graduating from high school that I wanted to go into the US Navy. I spent 10 years of active duty, and 10 years in the reserve. I retired in 1981 as a Chief Hospital Corpsman in the US Navy.

From among the kaleidoscope of events, I see Candy Petrikis' mother dropping her off at the studio on Van Ness Avenue in her 1953 Oldsmobile with louvers on the hood and beautiful sounding glass pack mufflers. I can vividly see Luana Villalobos standing with her group of girlfriends talking while I built up my courage to ask her to enter the weekly dance contest with me. I had to wait until she was alone in case she said no. Then with my heart palpitating in my ears, sweaty palms, and very nervous, I asked her, and she said yes.

When the time came for the weekday part of the contest, she sensed my nervousness, and said, "just relax and loosen up a bit." We danced to Santo and Johnny's "Sleepwalk" and we won the contest, and I got a pair of Thom McCann shoes. That automatically qualified us for the Saturday final competition. We practiced for the final part of the contest, and then, all of a sudden, there we were. The contest judges were Mr., and Mrs., Leon, of the "House of Leon" dance school; I could really feel the pressure. The song started it was "You Were Mine" by the Fireflys. When the winners were announced, it was Luana and I. What a great feeling; we both went home with a brand new stereo each. I had mine for many years. THANK YOU LU AND THANK YOU DANCE PARTY.

One of my favorite songs of that era was Dick Stewart's "I Believe" and the flip side "Without You." Dick has a beautiful voice; maybe we can get him to belt it out at the reunion. Dick's record was all over creation in all of the jukeboxes.

At the Regular auditions, I had the good luck to be dance partner with Barbara Anne Burrus - Stewart. We were both students at James Lick Jr. High in San Francisco at the time. I remember seeing Barbara Anne in quite a few of the school's productions. She was a great actress.

I became a Regular thanks to Regular Leo Baquero who was a neighbor. He encouraged me to audition.

I have always thought of Regular Manny Interiano as "Lonely Boy;" however, he was by no means lonely. He had a very smooth way with the ladies, and he had a true resemblance to Paul Anka. I can vividly remember being at a record store on Market Street in San Francisco, and a couple of girls said, "there is that guy from Dance Party who looks like Paul Anka" henceforth, his old Mercury was "Lonely Boy."

I would like to thank Manny for his diligence and hard work in putting the reunion together, and making it possible to relive precious moments of the past. I am looking forward to seeing everyone hopefully, I still have the moves.

 

Wayne Clark Scrapbook


 

Links to different web pages

Dick Stewart
The Regulars
Scrapbook
1997 Reunion
Memories

Photos


Links
In Memoriam
2004 Reunion
 

 

 
 
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by M. Interiano
  Copyright 2004. All rights reserved.
  Revised: March 4,200409/10/06 09:26:33 -0700.