Robert Goulet was unforgettable – when he died, five years ago today, Obit Mag offered a remembrance. Originally published October 2007 on Obit-Mag.com.
, the rapscallion of a baritone who won a Tony, an Emmy and a Grammy, died on October 30, 2007 at the age of 73. Goulet’s talent on stage and quality of voice were unmistakable, but he struggled against a changing entertainment landscape when he arose in the early 1960s. The birth of Rock ‘n’ Roll had altered the expectations of a youth icon and Goulet never precisely fit the bill. But he continued to find venues for his viscous baritone from Las Vegas to Broadway and, more recently, as a parody of himself in commercials, TV and film.
Robert Goulet arrives for the 71st annual Drama League luncheon and awards ceremony, in New York, Friday May 13, 2005. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)
Goulet was a malleable entertainer whose surety in his own talents and individual qualities allowed him to transform chameleon-like from comedian to crooner, from lounge lizard to dramatist effortlessly. His ability to follow the opportunities that were offered to him without ever taking himself too seriously let his audience revel in everything Goulet.
He first appeared on Broadway in the original version of Camelot on Broadway in 1960, playing a suave Lancelot. This initial success led to a slew of records that garnered him a Grammy for Best New Artist. More Broadway roles followed, as did a TV adaptation of Brigadoon, which won an Emmy for Best Musical Program.
After the 1960s his popularity waned, but as a cultural figure, the name Goulet was never far from the minds of his initial audience and generations to follow. His most recent commercial work for Emerald Nuts had the tag line, “Keep Goulet away, with Emerald Nuts.”
The world has lost a truly unique performer.
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