Jimmy Nederlander Sr. is a Broadway legend. Having owned and operated some of the most famous theaters in the world, he is by far the hardest working man in show business! Jimmy is behind the success of Broadway’s most famous four-legged star, Sandy, the lovable mutt from the original stage production of Annie. As Chairman of the Board of the numerous Nederlander enterprises, Jimmy works really hard, but the fruits of his labor are twice as sweet, especially when he works side by side with his diva-dog Yorkie named Cupcake! Just like Jimmy, Cupcake is one top dog… she even has an executive doggie bed in Jimmy’s office!
Animal Fair’s Wendy and Lucky Diamond had a power lunch with Mr. Nederlander and his lovely wife, Charlene (who’s been together for 41 puppy-loving years), where they talked about the sibling rivalry, Broadway, Yorkie Love.
WD: How did you come up with the name Cupcake?
JN: Well, when we first got her, she was this little thing and my grandson saw her and said, “She’s the size of a cupcake!” and the name stuck.
WD: She’s one sweet dog!
CN: She is fantastic with everyone but Cupcake does not get along with her genetic sister. I loved Cupcake so much that I tracked down the breeder hoping to duplicate her charms, so that’s how we got her sister, Peaches, but the two sisters did not get along. Jealousy erupted! They had to be in separate cars, yards… we worked with pet psychologists and trainers but nothing worked! Peaches lives with our son now.
WD: Yikes! That sounds like a doggie dilemma!
CN: But she doesn’t have the typical temperament of a Yorkie. Cupcake is the Chairmaness of the Board.
WD: Does Cupcake help you make important business decisions?
JN: She makes executive decisions. I turn to her and she says either “yes” or “no”.
WD: If Jimmy was a dog, what type of breed would he be?
CN: If Jimmy was a dog, he’d be a King Charles spaniel. They’re quite docile and wonderful creatures. [Like them], he’s determined in a lot of ways.
WD: If Charlene was a dog what type of dog would she be?
JN: Charlene would be the most beautiful dog I ever had.
WD: Do you try to get roles for animals in Broadway shows?
JN: Dogs relax people. There has to be a part for them. If not, we have to get the writers busy!
WD: Who are some of your favorite doggie actors?
JN: I liked Asta in the old Nick and Nora Charles mysteries and of course, Sandy in Annie.
WD: Do you think you work like a dog?
JN: I work harder than a dog – I’m trying to keep up with a cat!