TODAY   |  April 05, 2013

Liza: I originally ‘wanted to be an ice skater’

Oscar, Grammy, Tony and Emmy winner Liza Minnelli talks about her new guest appearance on the hit show “Smash,” where she wow’s Ivy in a surprise performance with Christian Borle.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> entertainment icon liza minnelli is part of an elite group of performers who has won a oscar, grammy and emmy and a tony in liza's case, four tonys. tomorrow night she guest stars on the nbc musical drama "smash" where she wows ivey in a surprise performance. you're older and i'm wiser ivey look, i brought you liza with a love letter from the times

>> and liza minnelli is back with us after administering a very difficult singing lesson, but i thought you did very well.

>> thank you.

>> performed a great public service for with us natalie. i'm watching that clip, you can see the genuine excitement on the actor's faces just to be on the stage with you. these are people who came up in the theater. you are an icon to them

>> thank you.

>> what was the experience like for to you work with them on "smash"?

>> it was wonderful because i was working with other performers and that's the reason i went into the theater was that you worked with other people. the first thing i saw that made me -- i wanted to be an ice skater and then i thought well, no, maybe not. when i saw "bye-bye birdie" i thought that's what i want to do. that looks like such wonderful fun, and it is. it's hard but it's fun.

>> a lot of these actors have said when liza minnelli walks into a room, everything else stops.

>> oh, come on.

>> because of who you are in the theater world, to these people, do you sense that at all?

>> no. i really don't. and i don't think about it, or else i wouldn't, you know -- i don't like being -- stuck up stuff is for the birds it really is.

>> you're far from that. meghan hilty the character she plays in this show is a dream are, a triple threat .

>> everybody is really good on that show.

>> do you see any of your great character, sally bowles, from "cabaret" in any of these up and coming struggling artist characters?

>> well, it would depend on how they did like for instance at an audition for sally bowles. you'd have to see what they would bring to the part. everybody brings something different, you snow.

>> absolutely.

>> like when i did it, it was funny, i wonder what she'd look like and saw these huge eye lashes so i thought oh she'd probably want to be extreme and extraordinary, and i put on this makeup and the night before we started filming, dyed my hair black, cut it and put on the stuff and marked on the door at the hotel and said what do you think? he said you didn't ask -- oh it's great. it was really funny.

>> well 40 years ago it's hard to believe it's out on blu-ray.

>> it's beautiful. my goodness you forget what a good movie is. i think people think it's a musical. it's not. it's really an historical piece and it captures the time and the taste and the feel of what was going on in germany and it's frightening and all these people singing and dancing around it's really interesting.

>> i've got to ask you, there are a lot of people watching this show, a new generation introduced to you through arrested development .

>> yes.

>> a new season coming up next month on netflix. how fun is lucille to play?

>> oh, please.

>> what does she see in buster? i don't get it.

>> that's changed a little in this season, but i think she just thought he was wonderful, just adorable, and wonderful, and he looked at her, i think she liked that.

>> its that he simple?

>> she has the problems with falling down and the balance and everything else, so my friend sam harris helped me a great deal with that but the director and writer is the best. mitch is the best.

>> so fun to watch. that comes out may 26th . liza minnelli t is so much fun to have but