His success is storied. He has acted or performed in almost every conceivable medium. And he is a father, grandfather, and great grandfather. Bill Hayes has much to celebrate. And today he has a very special reason for doing so.
Happy Birthday, Bill Hayes
That’s because he was born on June 5, 1925, in Harvey, Illinois, which means that this uber-talented performer is turning 95 years old today! Hayes spent the better part of the late 1940s, the 1950s, and the early to mid-60s amassing career credits as a singer and musical theater star.
His work in Olsen & Johnson’s burlesque revue Funzapoppin (1949) led to a job as Your Show of Shows resident crooner, which in turn was followed by appearances in films like Stop, You’re Killing Me and the Broadway musical Me and Juliet.
He worked in a plethora of stage productions – including Bye Bye Birdie, Brigadoon, and George M! – before joining the cast of Days of Our Lives in 1970. As originally written, Hayes’ character, Doug Williams, was a contestable con man and a prison-hardened louse.
And the role was supposed to be short term. But once the soaps’ head writer, William J. Bell, paired Hayes opposite Susan Seaforth’s Julie Olson Banning, and saw the resulting fireworks, Hayes was signed to a long term contract.
For the next 10 years, Hayes played a major role in helping keep DAYS a top-rated soap – as did Doug’s on-again, off-again relationship with Julie. But regardless of the status of their fictional counterparts, Hayes and Seaforth were very much on.
They married in 1974. Doug and Julie followed suit in 1976…and again in 1981..and again in 1994 – the path to true love never runs smooth on a soap opera.
Soap Hub would like to wish Bill Hayes a very happy birthday and you can too by clicking on the Twitter link below. Days of Our Lives airs weekdays on NBC. Check your local listings for airtimes.