WHY DOES HELEN BORGERS HAVE ALL THE FUN? IT’S ON THE RADIO NOW!By Greater Long Beach
That question batted leadoff Thursday night (Dec. 8) when Borgers was the featured guest on Greater Long Beach with Dave Wielenga on the Cal State Long Beach online station, KBEACH.org.
Wielenga got an answer, too. To hear it, listen to the show any time.
Of course, Borgers had wrapped up her drive-time show on KKJZ—that would be the Cal State Long Beach FM jazz station, where she has worked for 32 years—only 60 minutes earlier; jazz experts familiar with the re-entry process insist that was no-way enough time for Borgers to completely de-mellow her cool-baby. Consequently, she was nearly defenseless against the wicked parry-and-thrust of Wielenga’s interrogation.
On the other hand, Borgers is a woman of many identities with a lifetime of experience as a quick-change artist. For example, an hour after she went live on Greater Long Beach with Dave Wielenga, the curtain went up on the production of A Christmas Carol that Borgers is directing for the Long Beach Shakespeare Company at the Richard Goad Theatre in Bixby Knolls.
Borgers is no dilettante in the theatre; she’s been LB Shakespeare’s artistic director since 1997. As for this production of A Christmas Carol? Well, GreaterLongBeach.com’s theatre critic, Greggory Moore, doesn’t exactly rank with Huell Howser on the exuberance meter, but he could barely contain himself in his review of A Christmas Carol:
The main reason this Christmas Carol is so successful: Borgers has fluidly and joyously blocked this show, with the actors flowing around each other and in and out of character and narrative. When a cast of 10 does a story involving over 60 distinct souls, you damn-well-better be creative about it. God bless us, LB Shakespeare is.
The accomplishments don’t end there.
Borgers, who majored in Dramatic Literature and History at CSULB, has taught drama and Shakespeare workshops at Poly High School in the ‘70s, and at Cabrillo High School from 1999 to 2003. For five years in the 1980s she was the host for the West Coast link of National Public Radio’s Coast-to-Coast New Year’s Eve broadcasts. In 1988 she appeared with Ed Asner, Jean Stapleton, Lloyd Bridges, and Steve Allen in a radio adaptation of Steve Allen’s forum of historical characters in celebration of the 100th anniversary of The Federalist Papers. In 2007, the Long Beach Arts Council presented Helen with their Distinguished Arts Professional award. Oh, her blog—Bard & Bop—is pretty cool.
Borgers has been making a name for herself—and then another, and still another, and yet another—for so long and in so many ways that she’s practically an all-purpose synonym.
But why? Why does Helen Borgers get to have all the fun?