One of Hollywood’s most active and talented producers, Lawrence Gordon was born and reared in Balzoni,
His first show business association was with TV producer Aaron Spelling on the Burke’s Law series. He
then joined ABC Television as head of West Coast Talent Development, leaving the network to become a
vice president of Screen Gems (now Columbia Picture Television) where he worked on developing new
projects, including “Brian’s Song,” starring James Cann and Billy Dee Williams, which became one of the
highest-rated and most acclaimed presentations on TV.
Gordon left Screen Gems to become Vice President in Charge of World-Wide Production for American
International Pictures, the first man to hold this title at that company. Among his successes were “Dillinger”
and “Heavy Traffic.”
After three years, he resigned his post to form his own company. Lawrence Gordon Production, Inc. His first
film was “Hard Times,” followed by “Rolling Thunder,” “The Driver,” “The End,“ Hooper,” “The Warriors,” and
Joel Silver was assistant to Lawrence Gordon on “The End” and Hooper.” He then worked as associate
producer on “The Warriors.”
His next position was as a production executive at Universal Pictures working as the executive in charge of
“The Incredible Shrinking Woman,” starring Lily Tomlin, and “Smokey And The Bandit II,” starring Burt
Reynolds, Sally Fields, and Jackie Gleason.
Lee Kramer has been involved in various aspects of the entertainment industry as well as the general
The London born Kramer has farmed in Israel and in Africa, run an antique jewelry store, as a full partner in
the largest footwear supplier in Europe, has been superstar Olivia Newton-John’s manager for the past five
years, also handles Cliff Richard among others, and has his own production company, L. K. Productions.
In addition to his chores as executive producer of XANADU, Kramer has produced several of Olivia Newton-
John’s television specials including Hollywood Nights for ABC-TV, which aired on Oscar night this year.
Kramer also is very much involved in preproduction plans for a feature film, “The Silver Surfer,” based on the
Marvel Comics character. Production is scheduled for early 1981.
Robert Greenwald directed extensively in the theater, both on and off-Broadway and in Los Angeles, and for
television, prior making his feature film directorial debut on XANADU.
Born and raised in New York City, Greenwald worked on more than 30 off-Broadway shows before
graduating to a job as assistant general manager with producer David Merrick. Based on his work in the New
York theatre, he was hired to run the new play program at Mark Taper Forum of the Los Angeles Music
Center, where within three years, he directed twelve productions, many of them musicals, including “Me And
Bessie,” which was so successful it moved to Broadway for a year-and-a-half. On Broadway, he also directed
“I Have A Dream,” starring Billy Dee Williams.
While at the Music Center, Greenwald became interested in film, and with Frank von Zernack started
Moonlight Productions. Over the next three years, he produced or directed 15 specials, pilots or movies for
TV. He co-produced Twenty Hours At Munich starring William Holden.
The Three movies he directed for television were all very well-received: Sharon: Portrait Of A Mistress, Kate:
Portrait Of A Centerfold, and Flatbed Annie & Sweetiepie: Lady Truckdrivers.
“….there’s gonna be a party all over the world….”
Jeff Lynne, composer, producers, lead vocalist, and guitarist for Electric Light Orchestra (ELO) also can play
piano, drums and bass.
Born in Birmingham, England, he joined his first professional group in 1966 at the age of 18, “Idle Race.” In
1970, Jeff joined “Move.” When that group disbanded, ELO was born, becoming known as the first band to
incorporate strings and rock.
Since 1976, ELO has chalked up hit after hit and many gold and platinum record awards. ELO’s 1978 tour
coincided with the release of their double album, “Out Of The Blue,” a set which had order of more than four
million world-wide before it had even been released.
Although he had offers to write songs for film, Jeff never had the time because of ELO’s constant touring and
recording schedule. 1979 was the first years in seven that ELO didn’t tour, so Jeff sank his teeth into a new
venture – writing and recording five songs for XANADU. The song are “I’m Alive,” The Fall.” All Over the World,”
“Don’t Walk Away,” and “XANADU.”
“….whenever you’re away from me, wherever you go, you’re
never far away from me, I want you to know….”
John Farrar has been Olivia Newton-John’s record producer since 1970. He has also written some of her
biggest hits, including the Oscar-nominated “Hopelessly Devoted To You” and “You’re The One That I Want”
from “Grease,” as well as “Have You Never Been Mellow” and “A Little More Love.”
Australian-born, Farrar and his group, “The Strangers” were the house band on The Go Show, Melbourne’s
version of American Bandstand. After moving to England, Farrar joined the two former members of the
popular English recording group, “The Shadows,” to form a trio, Marvin, Welch and Farrar. John co-produced
the group’s first album.
John and Bruce Welch co-produced Olivia Newton-John’s first record. Their first single, a Bob Dylan tune, “If
Not For You” was a hit in the U. S. and England in 1971. he started to produce Olivia’s records on his own in
1972, and “If You Love Me, Let Me Know” was certified double platinum. Farrar got a Grammy as producer of
“I Honestly Love You.”
The album “Have You Never Been Mellow” was certified double platinum; the “Grease” soundtrack multi-
platinum, and the albums “Clearly Love,” “Come On Over,” Olivia Newton-John’s Greatest Hits,” and “Totally
Hot” were all certified platinum.
Farrar moved to Los Angeles in 1977. He wrote and produced five original songs for XANADU – “Magic,”
“Suddenly,” Whenever You’re Away From Me,” “Suspended In Time,” and “Dancin’” plus some incidental
music for the film. He has also been writing and producing his own solo album as a songwriter/performer. It’
s scheduled for release by CBS Records in Spring 1980.
“….is it a dream? When will it end?”
Kenny Ortega is a specialist in rock ‘n roll dance. He’s also choreographed many musicals for the stage,
making him a perfect choice to co-choreograph XANADU.
He began dance lessons at the age of four, studying tap, jazz, ballet acrobatics, and flamenco. Ortega, while
still in his teens, joined the San Francisco company of “Hair.”
Ortega has directed and choreographed numerous local productions of such shows as “Mame,” and “Finian’
s Rainbow.” A turning point in his career occurred when he meet The Tubes – who are featured in XANADU.
He spent three years staging their act and performing with them all over the world.
Through The Tubes, he met Toni Basil, the Dance Queen of Rock ‘n Roll, who asked Kenny to direct her
show, “Follies Bizarre.” This led to working with Cher, Raquel, Bette Midler, Ethel Merman, and Kiss.
His first film was assistant choreographer to Toni Basil on the rock sequence for Better Midler in “The Rose.”
For television, he choreographed Olivia Newton-John’s recent TV special which aired on Oscar night.
Born in Danville, Illinois, Jerry Trent began tap and acrobatic lessons at the age of seven, followed by ballet
and jazz classes.
In New York, Jerry’s first role was in “West Side Story,” at Paper Mill Playhouse, followed by “Camelot” on
Broadway. He also did numerous industrial shows plus live TV, including The Ed Sullivan Show and The Bell
Upon moving to Los Angeles, Jerry danced in numerous films, including “Sweet Charity,” “Hello, Dolly!,”
Funny Lady,” They Shoot Horses, Don’t They?,” and “Mame.”
Finding that he had outgrown dancing as a profession, he became a choreographer. Prior to XANADU, he
assisted Onna White on “Pete’s Dragon,” Marc Breaux on “Sexette” and Michael Kidd on “Movie, Movie.” He
also worked as assistant choreographer for Joey Heatherton, Bert Convy and Ginger Rogers on their
“….I’m really down on love, so sit on your smile, I
won’t be needing anymore for a while….”
Bobbie Mannix was born in Livingston, New jersey and educated at the Philadelphia Museum Collage of Art
and the Fashion Institute of Technology in Manhattan. After leaving school, Mannix worked on Seventh Avenue
as an assistant designer on Ann Klein and as a designer at Bardley Suits & Coats.
Then Bobbie moved to Los Angeles where she established her own company, Mannix Enterprises, to create
television commercials and print advertising campaigns. Additionally, Mannix has designed costumes for
several feature films including “At Long Last Love,” “Uncle Joe Shannon,” “The Warriors,” and “The Long
Riders.” Presently, she is entering another phase, designing retail merchandise for her own label.
“….I’m alive and the world shines for me today….”
RICHARD CHRISTIAN DANUS
Richard Christian Danus, a native of New York City, quite school at fourteen and began a series of various
jobs – elevator operator, waiter, colder, creative director of a New York advertising agency, actor and screen
He first wrote episodic television for such series as Harry-O and McMillan and wrote several movie for
television including “The Girls In The Office.” He recently completed two screenplays, one for MGM entitled
“Air Raid,” which John Forman will produce and “Bandstand” for Dick Clark Productions.