The life and death (murder) of closeted gay actor Dick Kallman
Dick Kallman was an actor in movies and television in the late 50s and 60s.He was also an accomplished singer who recorded an album of standards for EMI in London, when he was accompanied by orchestras conducted by John Barry and Ennio Morricone. In 1975, he joined a partnership to manufacture women's play clothes and party clothes and also began working as a dealer in antiques, silver, and art.
Richard Kallman was also a gay man. On February 22, 1980 Richard and his partner Stephen Szladek were murdered in Kallman's Manhattan apartment by three men who gained entrance and stole a lot of valuable art, antiques, and jewelry. It was a well planned and executed heist and it took over a year before the three were caught and even longer for them to be tried, convicted, and given lengthy prison sentances.
27-year-old Charles Lonnie Grosso of Queens was convicted of the killings and was sentenced to 25 years to life in prison. None of the paintings, jewelry, and antiques stolen from the apartment were ever recovered.
Dick Kallam is best remembered as the titular character in the NBC sitcom,Hank.Hank is a college concession stand operator who disguises himself and sneaks into classes. Hijinks ensue from his deceptions.
Sigh. Standard datalounge to jump to the conclusion that the man was gay. The article clearly identifies Szladek as "an associate".
Kallman also starred in the national tour of the musical "Half a Sixpence."
There''s someone quoted at r1''s link who seems to be saying that HE was Kallman''s lover: "I never set foot in our apartment again."
Thanks OP for posting this. He seemed like a great person.
He was also the lead in How to Succeed on the road. Saw him in Half a Sixpence, too.
I loved his performance as Little Louie Groovy in the last season of Batman with Cesar Romero as The Joker and Eartha Kitt as The Catwoman.
How weird! I don''t remember him or the series HANK at all, and I was a searching confused gay teen in the 1960s.
Did this take place in some parallel earth? never heard of any of this. And why bring it up?
R4/R11= retarded. Fuck off imbeciles.
I wonder how these men gained access to their apartment.
Author: bkoganbing from Buffalo, New York
I was still in the closet back in 1980 and working for New York State Crime Victims Board when I was assigned a claim by Zara Kallman who was Richard's mom. Richard Kallman was a closeted gay man who by 1980 had left the acting profession and become a noted art dealer. On February 22, 1980 Richard Kallman and his partner Stephen Szladek were murdered in Kallman's apartment by three men who gained entrance and stole a lot of valuable art, antiques, and jewelry. It was a well planned and executed heist and it took over a year before the three were caught and even longer for them to be tried, convicted, and given lengthy prison sentances.
Through Zara Kallman I got to know Richard, he sent her various sums of money to help her live, she was living in California. He was a dutiful son indeed and I was able to sell the idea of paying a loss of support even though he had never declared her as a dependant on his tax return. I was certainly glad to do it.
I've no doubt Dick Kallman was victimized because even 11 years after Stonewall celebrities were not rushing to break down closet doors. We've seen in the past few years a lot of them break free from the closet like Neil Patrick Harris, George Takei, Ellen DeGeneres, and most recently Clay Aiken. Kallman's killers occupied that shadowy world of people who prayed on gays.
But the lesson for me in this horrible crime was that if a celebrity like Dick Kallman could be victimized like this, what does that hold for an obscure civil servant like your's truly? Within a year I was out at work and have never regretted it since.
So to Richard Kallman who after his own death influenced another life on this planet this review is dedicated. And to Zara Kallman who brought up a dutiful gay son whom she was proud of and who I was privileged to assist in her hour of tragedy this review is also dedicated. Having had a mother who also endured the loss of a child, I know what she went through.
I only wish Kallman had a better show for his epitaph.
NY Times July 29,1981\
THE CITY; Verdict in Killings Of 2 on East Side\
A 27-year-old Queens man was convicted of second-degree murder in the slayings last winter of Richard Kallman, a prominent art and antiques dealer, and Mr. Kallman''s business associate.\
The defendant, Charles Lonnie Grosso, was found guilty in State Supreme Court in Manhattan of killing Mr. Kallman, 46, the art dealer, and Steven Szladek, 26.\
Mr. Kallman and Mr. Szladek were found dead Feb. 22 in Mr. Kallman''s apartment at 17 East 77th Street. Each had been shot in the head. Paintings, jewelry and antiques stolen from the apartment have not been recovered.\
Justice Patrick McGinley set sentencing for Sept. 18. The maximum penalty is 25 years to life.(AP)
NY (UPI)-Feb 23, 1980\
Richard Kallman, an actor turned art dealer who played a destitute short-order cook on television, was found shot to death in his apartment surrounded by precious art objects, including a 2.3 million Titian painting.\
Kallman, 46, was found Friday in his living room naked from the waist down.He had been found shot at least once, in the right eye, police said.\
Nearby, his assistant, identified only as Steven was lying nude in a pool of blood.The assistant described as being in his 20s, had been shot at least once in the head.\
Kallman is the son of the Broadway actress Zara Whitman and Alvin Kallman, a one time millionaire hotel owner.
He was hot and Lucy liked him, believe he guest-starred on "Here''s Lucy" a couple of times and she may have produced his own series. Always thought his story would make an interesting indie film, also Dennis Parker of "Edge of Night" and "Like An Eagle" semi-fame.
Kallman, a handsome stocky man of 46, was found sitting in an armchair of his yellow living room. He was wearing a robe and was naked from the waist down.Nearby, his assistant, a tall blond haired man was lying nude in a fetal position.\
Detectives said there was no apparent motive for the slayings, which occurred sometime after a small dinner party Thursday night, attended by five male guests in the lavishly furnished duplex at 17 E. 77th St.
Earl Wilson''s column from March 4,1980\
Delores Gray whose partner and close friend, Richard M. Kallman was murdered...\
He and Miss Gray had a chef and butler to help them entertain customers.They were seen at parties, and attended the recent opening of "Harold and Maude"-wearing His and Hers full-length mink coats.\
I can''t believe this was never an episode of True Hollywood Stories by A.J. Benza.
Other than the His and Hers full-length mink coats, I''m not sure what r20 is saying about Delores'' relationship to Dick.
Thanks A Lot (But No Thanks!)
The arresting officer, who is gay, recounts the experience on Kallman''s imdb page.
Dick Kallman was my uncle and I find it very interesting to see more and more information on him every time I look. Sadly I only remember meeting him once when I was very young and so I don''t have a lot to add to the discussion. He and my father did not get along very well and my grandmother always favored Dick, but I do wish I could have gotten to know him more as I understand he was a great guy.%0D\
Strange this thread was bumped because I just watched him on a dvd of an old "Hullabaloo" ep. where he sang some song of his. He had a couple of albums, not sure if any were hits, but his voice was okay. Kind of a Tom Jones (except lamer) feel to his music. He was hot, though.
So who got the UES duplex? You don''t let an address like that go.%0D
Dear reply 15 & 26 I am currently researching into Dick Kallman's life and tragic death. I am based in London. Would you be happy to talk?
[quote]women's play clothes
Is this a euphemism for something?
R30, I think that's what are called "sports separates" today.
[quote]Kallman's killers occupied that shadowy world of people who prayed on gays.
The killer was a cleric?
Hello posts 15 & 26 we have now set up a completely confidential email address for you to contact us. We are researching Dick Kallman's life and would love to hear from you so that we can build a fuller more complete picture.Thank you and please contact us at:
Many hearfelt thanks
R4, you freeper cunt, it's well known now that Kallman was gay. And what do you think the press and authorities would call a bf then? Yes, asshole - an "associate."
This place is filling with homophobes.
Duh. I was dumb enough not to notice this is yet another bumped thread. With any luck (and it's clear the homophobes have been pouring in for years) R4 is dead by now.
I confuse Dick Kallman with Dick Kollmar, an actor who was also reputedly gay and married to the chinless wonder Dorothy Kilgallen, star of "What's My Line"
I was one of the last people to see Dick Kallman alive, at a dinner party at Russell and Diantha Nype's apartment. He was indeed a pleasant fellow, officially Dolores Gray's social escort, because in those days women of an old-fashioned outlook needed a male to squire them around. They felt it looked odd if they just showed up by themselves, whether theatregoing or antiquing. Even at whatever age he was then, he looked very young. The Nypes' dinners always featured musicales at the piano, and I was the accompanist. Dolores wanted to sing "Here's That Rainy Day," but I don't play by ear and Russell didn't have the music. She sang it a cappella, glaring at me the whole time. She was truly an awful character, but an amazing talent--one of the very best singers Broadway has ever known.
Haven't heard the word "musicale" since Grant and Lee met at Appomatox.
I wonder how many people who have had roles in Broadway musicals have been murdered. Can anyone name others?
R38, George Rose, who won the Tony for Best Actor in a Musical for THE MYSTERY OF EDWIN DROOD in 1986 was murdered while on vacation in the Dominican Republic in 1988 by his adopted son, a poor teenage boy whom he unwisely named his heir. The boy and his real father and uncle murdered Rose and tried to make it look like an accident. They were caught and tried in their native land but allowed to go free.
That story is terrible, R45.
You've got to wonder how poor the police work must have been in that case. No witnesses?
Thank you, [[R43]]. What a ghastly saga. Not to blame the victim, but why did Rose have to go adventuring in a place like the Dominican Republic? With his vast discretionary income, couldn't he have simply hired what he needed back home? I just read a short story in which a nerdy guy picks up a dangerous-sounding sailor in a bar and takes him home and gets raped. Then it turns out that the sailor is an actor and this is a regular gig between the two of them. So he gets the excitement without the peril. It's really sad that George Rose didn't think to do the same thing--and he certainly had plenty of exposure to actors.
That is just sad 45.
Sadly, this is a tale as old as time. Add Ramon Novarro and Sal Mineo to this list.
Bump for the "28 short intros from 1960-64" thread.
Fuck you, R4, and stuff that sigh back down your homophobic throat.
He was very good looking. You know, whenever I go to NYC, I always hunt down where famous people died or were murdered. I'm going to this apartment next time.
This was his town house where he and his partner were stabbed 100 times. How did he get the money for this thing, I wonder? He was a failed actor for all but 5 of his last years on Earth. The news report said there was a Titian painting there valued at 5 million dollars in 1980 dollars.
SO there is no book on Dick Kallman either? These guys seem like they would be interesting to read about. Also, their murder cases would be interesting to read about as well. True crime books dissecting the evidence and the crimes.
This is all very interesting and infuriating and I thank the OP for bringing this to our attention....but....
Eve Arden did "Hello Dolly?" How did I not know this? Did any of you see her in it? I bet she was fab-u-lous.
Also interesting about The Merm making the show "her show" and leaving Dolly in the dust.
Marry me R37 LOL!!!
Dick Kallman was in the national company of HOW TO SUCCEED. Dyan Cannon played Rosemary. My folks saw it in Chicago. That was right before she left to marry Cary Grant.
I believe Kallman also played J. Pierpont Finch the first time HOW TO SUCCEED was produced in summer stock at the St. Louis Muny, although I could be wrong.
Danny Lockin and Sal Mineo... so sad. Lockin was adorable in HELLO, DOLLY!
[quote]Eve Arden did "Hello Dolly?" How did I not know this? Did any of you see her in it? I bet she was fab-u-lous.
Arden headed the Chicago company that was a sit down production that didn't move every few weeks like a national tour. Not sure if she did one of the other tours. She never did the role on Broadway.
For R59- Website about all the actresses who played Dolly. Look and you will fimd Eve Arden.
Big fan of musical theater here, R63, what a great link. GREAT! History on the hoof. Many thanks.
Happy to do it Edga! In my time I have seen Carol Channing, Dorothy Lamour, Marilyn Maye, Madeline Kahn and Michele Lee all play Dolly Levi.
kcguy, who has many theatre sites saved and lives for musical theatre
And I guess I have hijacked this thread from Kallman to Danny Lockin to Dolly. Sorry!
R47, there's something to be said for going commercial.
You get it out of your system and nobody gets hurt.
Madeline Kahn played Dolly? Where?
I love reading these types of unsolved mystery stories, but there is something spooky about them. You just never know who you're going home with, do you?
R69 is correct. Just think of all the men who went home with JANBOT, unsuspecting.
I saw Dick Kallman in "How to Succeed" when I was about 12 or so, and remember that he projected a childlike, asexual quality, much like Peewee Herman. Robert Morse had that quality, too, of a young innocent who's oblivious to women but Kallman was much more campy. So while he wasn't out as a performer, he sure wasn't in.
New York Magazine did an article two weeks before his death showcasing his fabulous apartment and collection.In retrospect, that doesn't seem like a smart move.
kcguy, you should start a thread for your musical theatre links! That would be neat.
Saw him in Half a Sixpence, too. Adorable.
[quote]Madeline Kahn played Dolly? Where?
Starlight Theatre in Kansas City, a large 9,000 seat outdoor theatre similar to the Muny in St. Louis.
And during the Dolly number as she was dancing along the runway, she hummed a bit of "Ah, Sweet Mystery of Life." John Schuck was Vandergelder. This was in 1992.
I was lucky to see Kahn on stage twice. Dolly and ON THE 20TH CENTURY a week before she left or was fired.
Australian Actress/Singer Tony Lamond, on of the Dollys in R63 link, is the mother of Tony Sheldon, from Priscilla, Queen of the Desert.
[quote]New York Magazine did an article two weeks before his death showcasing his fabulous apartment and collection.In retrospect, that doesn't seem like a smart move.
I've always wondered why celebrities or even people who aren't famous but well-off showcase their homes in publications. Be it Architectural Digest or gossip magazines, it seems like such an opening for thieves who could easily find the location.
For those of you who have seen the 1961 remake of "Back Street," actor Dick Kallman is the sailor who is dancing with Susan Hayward at the airport USO at the very beginning of the film.
Kallman: "You don't live here in Lincoln?"
Hayward: "You call this living?!?"