Robin Byrd (born April 6 1957, in New York) is an American former porn actress and the host of 'THE ROBIN BYRD SHOW', which has appeared on commercial use cable television in New York City for over 30 years.
Byrd was adopted and raised in New York City. She has been searching but has never been able to identify her birth parents, due to the unwillingness of her adoptive mother to reveal that information and sealed birth and adoption records under New York State law.
At the time of filming the porn classic, 'Debbie Does Dallas' Byrd was living in New York. After taking some college classes in marketing and advertising at Baruch College City University of NY, she attended The School of Visual Arts and worked as a nude model for art classes. Her adult entertainment career was launched when she was a finalist in the 'Ms All Bare America' contest and subsequently starred in porn films during the late 70's and early 80's; including a role in the above-mentioned 'Debbie Does Dallas'.
ROBIN ON THE 'HOT LEGS" SHOW IN 1979
After guest-hosting on a leased access cable show called 'Hot Legs', she changed the name to 'THE ROBIN BYRD SHOW' in 1979. The show has aired continuously since. Each episode features Byrd in her trademark black crochet bikini and white fingernail polish, on an all-red set with a large, heart-shaped neon sign that bears the name of her show. Male and female porn stars and strippers appear as guests and perform fully nude stripteases, sometimes also taking calls from viewers. Byrd and her guests also frequently engage in on screen play by the end of the episode. Celebrities from outside the adult entertainment industry such as Sandra Bernhard, Mark Kostabi, Michael Musto, among others have also been guests on her show.
- In 1988, Byrd in Bodybuilding competition form broadcast live a Health, Nutrition, and exercise show called
'Modern Women'. (photos of Byrd on the set of 'Modern Women' are on the photo album page)
- In 1990 Robin Byrd had the talked about shower scene in Sandra Bernhard's movie 'Without you I'm nothing'.
- In 1993 Byrd had a minor part in a Disney film with Michael J. Fox titled 'Life with Mikey'.
- In 1999, Richard Avedon photographed Byrd for a feature in 'The New Yorker' on famous and influential New Yorkers.
- In 2000, Byrd was a featured performer in the long running Off-Broadway production of (Shakespeare's-Mid
Summers Night Dream) called 'The Donkey Show' produced by Jordan Roth.
- Also, in 2000, BMG released a CD called 'Lie Back And Get Comfortable - Robin Byrd presents Latin love songs to make love to'.
- Robin hosted several events during Gay Pride Week 2003 in New York. One was a frank discussion titled "Sex in the City" that featured a panel of academics, activists and physicians who explored the meaning LGBT sexual culture and health in New York today.
- In 2003, Marc Juris, formerly of Fuse TV famously plastered Robin Byrd on New York City's bus fleet as part of its re-branding.
- In 2005, Robin Byrd performed & hosted the absurd weekly 'Speedo Bulge' contests at the 'Fire Island Pines Pavilion'.
- Byrd's show, filmography, and personal appearances have made her a local celebrity and to some extent, a national and international one. She is a frequent presenter of adult entertainment, Gay pride, Aids awareness and animal rights events. She also appeared on VH-1 in the ' I Love Series ' and on MTV's' New Year's Eve Top 100 Countdown'.
- The Robin Byrd show was parodied on Saturday Night Live' in a series of skits airing in 1997 and 1998. Byrd herself was played by Cheri Oteri.
- In 2012 Robin Byrd returned to the Stage with the weekly hilarious high-spirited bawdy 'Robin Byrd Show-Live' variety show @ The Cutting Room 44 East 32 Street,/Park Ave. Fun & Fantasy is back in NYC.
- In 2013, Robin Byrd opened the newly re-built legendary Fire Island Pines nightclub,'The Pavilion' with the humoresque Robin Byrd Presents 'Boy' Burlesque.
- As of 2014, 'THE ROBIN BYRD SHOW' continues to be aired seven nights a week, unscrambled, and uncut.
- In 2014, Robin was back at The Fire Island Pines ' Pavillion ' as the weekly host for 'HIGH TEA'EVERY SAT and SUN. from 6-10.
- In 2014/2015 Robin hosts & performs at the monthly Disco Tea Dance party at 'The Monster' in Greenwich Village, N.Y.C.
- In 2014, Robin introduced her Dance song 'Touch Me'. A collaboration with talented Record producer, songwriter, ; Lovari-Lovari.
- In 2020 Robin is still hosting every last Sunday of the month @ The Monster in Manhattan with DJ Greg Scarnici for BELOW TEA from 6-10PM.
- In 2021 Robin hosted safely every Saturday @ Ice Palace in Cherry Grove, Fire Island; looking forward to hosting again in 2022.
Q. What's the story about the bikini you wear on the show?
A. When I danced, a costume maker had a grandmother who crochetted. She crochetted the
original one. A few years later, I needed to replace it. While walking down the streets
of NYC I came across a street vendor who was selling crochetted clothing for kids. I
noticed that she had a swim suit like my costume, only for children. I asked her
if she could make me the costume similar to the size I wore. The answer was "yes."
I loved it because it would actually
show everything and nothing at the same time.
So I had her make me more. And that's what you see me wearing on the show. Since I'm a wash'n'wear
girl, they're made of acrylic, not wool and have a silver thread running through it for
sparkle. I've had at least 60 made over the years.
Q. Where did you get the Robin Byrd Show neon sign?
A. It was a birthday present from "the head gopher" back in 1980 or 81.
I had always loved the heart logo used on the "I Love Lucy" TV show and how they incorporated the show title
with the heart. I still have the original sign even though we had to repair some of the
glass tubing over the years. It was such an important background to the show that it
has become part of our logo.
Q. Is the show seen anywhere outside of New York City?
A. Sometimes it seems so when I travel because a lot of fans tape the shows and send
it to friends all over the world. But, no we are only seen on a Manhattan leased access
cable television channel. Most cable systems think that their viewers are not
adult enough to make their own decisions and that's why it's not shown outside NYC.
Q. When and why did you start using the white fingernails?
A. From the beginning of the show to about 1989 I used silk nail raps. But I wanted
to go all
natural and as an artist I knew that white would make the nails look larger.
So I had the tips cut off and asked my manicurist to use white and have used it ever since.
Q. I have seen you appear and perform at many functions to raise money and
awareness for AIDS. How did the epidemic change your show?
A. AIDS continues to change the show. Because we now re-edit a lot of the past shows
many look like memorials to dancers who are no longer with us. In 1980 I started
doing charity work for AIDS prevention and support services. I remember the first one was
"Strip for AIDS" at The World. Even back in 1976 I had a contest on the show
called "How many condoms in the bowl"? But as the AIDS epidemic grew over the years
every show included a warning to use condoms and dental dams. Last year I was the
host of several events during Gay Pride week. One was called "Sex in the City"
where legal, medical and gay activists talked about AIDS and it's continuing threat.
Q. During the call-in section of your live shows, did you ever get a phone
call from celebrity?
A. The first celebrity to call was Sandra Bernhard. But at first I didn't believe
it was her even though it sounded like her. She invited me to her show her and I
did go. We became great friends and she even made three appearances on my show in
1986, 87 and 88. I appeared in some of her movies and we co-hosted an MTV 100 top
videos of the year countdown TV show in 1987.