Mark Weston with actress Anne Jackson, wife of actor Eli Wallach. Both Jackson and Wallach appeared in Weston's production Harry and Eddie: The Birth of Israel.
For over 50 years, Hicksville resident Mark Weston has been contributing his artistic talent to society, first as an actor, then as a writer and teacher, and, most recently, as a playwright.
Greatly interested in acting, Weston joined the professional union in 1952 and, two years later, started studying under Academy Award nominated director and actor Lee Strasberg. In 1954, Weston became the original Brylcreem man in television commercials, speaking the memorable jingle "A Little Dab'll Do Ya!" He then went on to appear on both the Off-Broadway and Broadway stage as well as on such popular daytime soap operas as Guiding Light, The Secret Storm, The Edge of Night and Another World.
In 1971, after nearly 20 years in front of the camera, Weston began to seriously reconsider his professional career when he came down with Bell's Palsy, a neurological disorder that causes paralysis of the facial nerve resulting in inability to control facial muscles on the affected side. "That just about put the kibosh on my acting career, and I turned to writing and teaching," Weston, who moved to Hicksville in 2000, said.
Weston decided to put his talent to good use behind the camera and be a playwright, which he was a natural at. Writing for over 30 years, Weston's credits include Beckwourth, The Ninth of April, Bagels and Luck, I'm With You! Shoehorn, Split Infinitive, De Witt C! and Harry & Eddie: The Birth of Israel, along with the musical Louise, starring Paige O'Hara who voiced Beauty in Disney's Beauty and the Beast. Additional screenplays to Weston's credit include Pershing, A New Tomorrow, Slade, Crispus Attucks and the documentary Inca Remembered, which received more than 30 international awards.
Weston also wrote and performed in the film Carnival Magic, which played in Hicksville theaters in the 1980s. He has written for multiple daytime serials and game shows including The College Bowl and The Price is Right, and has penned an impressive collection of books that include Baseball Bloopers for Prentice-Hall, Winning Monologues from the Beginnings Workshop and 101 Winning Monologues for Young Performers Including Valuable Acting Hints.
The actor, writer and playwright's most recent successes continue to be immensely popular. Weston's production of The Ninth of April, which describes General Lee's surrender to General Grant, has been performed at West Point since 1992. Additionally, since 2002, Harry & Eddie: The Birth of Israel has been performed across the country, including at Hofstra University in April. Also, since the 1990s, Weston's play Beckwourth, a story about a great forgotten mountain-man, has been performed on Off-Broadway stages as well as in school districts across the county.
Weston, who attended the New York College of Music and the University of Wisconsin through USAFI (correspondence), is a member of the Dramatist's Guild. He has been teaching writing at the Screen Actor's Guild conservatory in Upstate New York as in Galveston, Texas for the past 16 years and is an acting teacher at the Glen Cove Solomon Schecter Middle School. Additionally, Weston has been featured in Newsday, Life magazine and various theater publications.
With all his success, Weston tells the Hicksville Illustrated News that he is most proud of two things in his life. "My two proudest accomplishments were being named to my high school's hall of fame (De Witt Clinton) and being married to Linda, the woman who became my greatest support.... and friend," said Weston.