Peter Marshalls career has demonstrated a versatility and flexibility that few entertainers or actors can show. Hes been a big band singer, part of a comedy team, performed the legitimate theatre, performed on the concert and nightclub circuit, both as a solo performer and for over ten years with a group he formed, Chapter 5, and appeared in movies and on television. He has, appropriately enough, been called the "complete entertainer."
Peter is probably best known as the five-time Emmy Award winning host of some 5000 editions of the popular game show, "Hollywood Squares," over a period of more that 15 years. He then hosted the yearlong event series on NBC-TV, "Fantasy," followed by another participation television show called "All Star Blitz." His television exposure made him one of the most recognizable faces in America.
Born Pierre La Cock in Huntington, West Virginia, Peter made his entrance into show business as a band singer at the age of fifteen. While still a teen, he moved to New York City where he landed a job as a page for NBC.
Early in his career he joined forces with Tommy Noonan. With its emphasis on comedy, Noonan and Marshall were a perfect melding of talents. The team appeared in major nightclubs and theatres throughout the country and made a number of appearances on the "Ed Sullivan Show," which established them with television viewers nationally. Peter looks back fondly upon his partnership days with Noonan. With the demise of Noonan and Marshall, he went to London and starred with Chita Rivera in "Bye Bye Birdie." Peters first starring role on Broadway was with Julie Harris in "Skyscraper" other musicals followed, such as "High Button Shoes," "Anything Goes," "Music Man," "42nd Street," and "La Cage Aux Follies." Peter toured in the National Company of "La Cage Aux Folles" for a period of two years and then went on to reprise his role as "George" at the Palace on Broadway for another year until the show closed after having played more than 5000 performances on Broadway. This engagement brought Peters total number of performances in "La Cage" to well over 800.
He also starred for two years in the national Touring Company of Neil Simons "Rumors."
Although his musical career came quickly and easily to him, acting was always his goal and became a reality with his signing as a contract player at Twentieth Century Fox. Some of his earlier films included "Ensign Pulver" and "The Cavern." More recently he was seen as the radio crooner in "Annie."
Peter has guest starred on all the major television series and appeared on several mini-series. He is proud of his performance in "HMS Pinafore" with the London Symphony Orchestra, which has been seen on the big screen as well as on pay-TV and PBS.
Peter does many "in house" corporate industrial videos.. thanks to his deep resonant voice, excellent diction and the charm and warmth that is such a part of him. He has done these industrials for Home Shopping Network, Lincoln-Mercury, and the US Department of the Interior, among others.
Peters love of big bands was reinforced when he hosted a series of 12 shows for the Disney Channel, "Big Bands From Disneyland," with such celebrated bands and leaders as Woody Herman, Lionel Hampton, and Buddy Rich. He has produced and, when available, toured in a big band package, featuring Tex Beneke and the Orchestra, the Modernaires with Paula Kelly, Jr., and singers such as Helen OConnell, Helen Forrest and Frankie Lane. This package played many of the major venues throughout the country.
Peter and his wife, Laurie, are avid golfers and play whenever they get the chance. They have a lovely home in the San Fernando Valley furnished with antiques Peter has collected over the years from all parts of the world, and they now have built and furnished a condo in Palm Desert, which they enjoy getting way to whenever possible for R & R and, and of course, golf!
Although the success of "Hollywood Squares" side tracked Peters career as a singer he enjoys singing most of all, and that he has the time, he performs with Big Bands packages ... with bands like Tex Beneke and his Orchestra, the Las Brown band and the Harry James band, as well as for many private engagements. His show includes a Big band Medley, which is always an audience favorite. Peter has recently joined with his good friends, The Modernaires with Paula Kelly, Jr. in a package show entitled "Time Was," a musical salute to the music of the 30s, 40,s and 50s.
The "Music of Your Life" radio network recently approached Peter and asked him to be a part of their syndicated radio shows. He is currently acting as deejay on the Music of Your Life stations, which reach approximately 170 cities nationally.