Belfast Telegraph

Monday 15 September 2014

No piano-playing for actor Douglas

Michael Douglas didn't learn to play the piano for his Liberace role

Michael Douglas has revealed he didn't learn how to play the piano for his Liberace role.

The Oscar-winning actor, who portrays the outgoing entertainer and musician in Steven Soderbergh's feature-length biopic Behind The Candelabra, attempted to learn the piano but decided against it.

"I asked Steven to find a number where there's film of Liberace playing it, because I'm not a pianist and I'm not going to learn," he admitted.

"We started off with a piano teacher and I said, 'This is not going to work'. By having it on a screen, I could watch it and practise getting the hands right by doing it over and over again."

Michael, the eldest son of Kirk Douglas and Bermudian-born actress Diana Love Dill, also revealed how he once met the Polish-Italian entertainer.

"I was visiting my father who had a house in Palm Springs, California, where Lee also had a house. We were at the crossroads and a car stopped - I think it was a Rolls Royce convertible - and this guy stepped out," he recalled.

"I remember it was a bright Palm Springs day and between the gold around his neck and his rings, the light was bouncing off him outside. He had a great smile, not a hair out of place. Now I know why. He was charming."

:: Behind The Candelabra is in cinemas now.

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