On the 1950s TV series Leave it to Beaver, Tony Dow played Wally Cleaver, the big brother everyone wanted to have.
However, like most celebrities on sitcoms, when the show ended, he sought other gigs to support his acting career. Childhood stars have enough to deal with as they age, but when Dow was asked by a young television executive if he had ever done comedy before, he knew it was time to seek new horizons.
Dow found his answer in the arts, carving out a new life as a bronze sculptor, with his works featured in such prestigious galleries as the Louvre in Paris, France. The highlight of his artistic career came a few years ago when his bronze pieces were accepted by the Societe Nationale des Beaux-Arts. At age 67, he is well on his way to artistic fame.
Today, the modest, friendly, soft-spoken actor/sculptor lives with his wife in the Topanga Canyon art colony in California. However, despite his impressive reputation as an artist, people spotting him on the street still refer to him as Beaver’s older brother.
Personally, I’m glad he can handle the insult and stays calm, but when you are true to yourself in your professional life, I suppose it is natural. Besides, what other reaction would you expect from Wally.
This week on The Disconnected Traveler: