Joel Higgins

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Born

9/28/1943 , Bloomington, Illinois

Birth Name

Joel Franklin Higgins

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Biography:

Joel Higgins is an extremely gifted actor and singer with a stage career spanning over 30 years. A graduate of Michigan State University, Joel and friend Hap Dunne performed in coffee houses to help pay the way through school. After leaving with a degree in Advertising and six months with General Motors Joel went to Europe to perform.

In 1968 he enlisted in the Army and was stationed at Camp Casey in Korea serving as the Special Services Sergeant in charge of Entertainment. Following his Army days he and several friends wrote a musical called The Green Apple Nasties. While working as a waiter Joel sold the show to a producer and they went on the road for two and a half years. During a performance in Louisville, Kentucky Joel was approached by a producer who asked him to play Sky Masterson in a local theatre production of Guys and Dolls. His first acting role would last as a 17-week Midwest tour.

In 1973 he landed the role of Vince in the First National Tour of Grease where he stayed for a year before leaving to join the pre-Broadway tryout of a new musical called Shenandoah. 1975 brought two different real-life roles: Joel Higgins - Theatre World Award Winner for James Anderson in the Broadway version of Shenandoah and Joel Higgins - new daytime television heartthrob as Bruce Carson in the CBS soap opera Search For Tomorrow.

1979 took Joel from daytime to primetime with a starring role in Salvage I with Andy Griffith. The show was short-lived afterwhich came Best of the West which featured Joel as Marshall Sam Best who after returning from fighting in the Civil War uproots his family and moves them out west. ABC cancelled the show after the first season. During the late 70s and early 80s Joel also appeared in several movies including Bare Essense, Threesome, First Affair, and Killing At Hell's Gate. With his acting career in full swing, he also continued to perform on stage in the musicals She Loves Me, Oklahoma, Music Is, and Camp Meeting as well as writing jingles for Kool-Aid, M&Ms, and the theme song for Lucille Ball's comeback series "Life With Lucy". Then came the offer he couldn't refuse...

In 1982 Embassy Television and NBC had a series titled Silver Spoons. Joel would play Edward W. Stratton III, the self-spoiled, childlike son of one of the country's richest industrialists. In the show's opening he would learn he has a twelve-year-old son, the product of his first marriage (lasting all of seven days). Joel was the only member of the cast familiar with doing comedy and took each of the others under his wing to teach them what he knew, Edward went from the childish playboy to a responsible father and husband but still maintained a touch of that little boy charm. By the last show, Joel had guaranteed himself a page in Hollywood's history and a place in the hearts of viewers around the world.