RAYMOND BALLINGER

Raymond Evans Ballinger was born in Mt Holly, New Jersey, the third son of Raymond Ballinger and Clara Williams. After his Mother left him at the age of seven, he and his older brother lived on the family homestead with their grandparents until his father returned and married and his step mother and brought his other siblings to live with them on farms surrounding  Marlton, New Jersey, until they returned to the original Evans-Ballinger  Homestead in Marlton, Evesham township. The remainder of his childhood was spent at a farm in Milford Neck, Delaware until, when Raymond was fifteen, his father brought the family to Culpeper, Virginia. Other family members remained on this farm and then went to other farms in Delaware ending up in Georgetown Delaware.



Raymond attended multiple schools and did not graduate from High School. He joined the Naval Air Force and served in Port Lyautey, Northern Africa, on a “kiddy cruise.” Following the navy, Raymond moved to New York City where he worked for Bourne Music Company selling sheet music by singing the tune while receiving his GED and living between the Woodrow Wilson Hotel and the Mc Burney YMCA.



In 1957 Raymond saw an add for the NY Theater Studio in the back of Show Biz Newspaper and started workshops with Curt Conway, a young director who had been blacklisted by CBS. Because of Curt he auditioned for and was accepted into the Actors Studio along with Steve McQueen where he worked with Lee Strasberg and Elia Kazan. Raymond did the Philco Theater shows of Tea and Sympathy and Burning Bright with Coleen Dewhurst, and View From The Bridge at the Little Carnegie Theater.In the Summer of 1959 he played Billy Walker in Criminal Court in Los Angeles, followed by summer theater at Hilltop Musical Theatre in Owings, Maryland, with Terrance Shank, Cass Eliot, and Donna Jean Updike in Hay Fever, Bells Are Ringing, Say Darling, and Mary Mary At  the Calumet Michigan Summer Theatre he played in Robin Hood, Hamlet, Wizard of Oz, Cinderella, and Goodbye Charlie.



Raymond continued to study with Stella Adler and Sandy Meisner  and Bobby Lewis, while doing various stints in Another World and other parts.

In 1960 he produced and directed and acted in his first play, The Imbecile. Raymond continued to do stage dramas including Tea and Sympathy for WNET.

In 1962 he married Leonora Calpini who he had met while working at MCA. In order to support him self he started teaching English at the Rabbi Jacob Joseph Yeshiva High School on Henry Street and continued acting when possible.That next summer he received his Equity card while he worked at the Kennebunkport Maine Summer Theater in Wake Up Darling, Susan Slept Here and Hay Fever with Faye Dunaway.In 1964 their first son, Thomas Evans Ballinger, was born followed by a second son, Jason Laurent Ballinger.

Raymond continued to do small roles, work in summer theaters  and teach until he moved to Johnstown New York in 1967 where he took an old farm with dilapidated barns and turned them in to a film studio and a home for the family.

He worked for the Fulton County Patriot Newspaper as a photographer and the Lexington Training Center as a plant manager and became a community activist. He was well known for his photo essays and  his film studio produced commercial films for Kasson and Keller, Edmunds Scientific, Marlee Knits, Mohawk finishing Co., and Amsterdam Brush to name a few.


Raymond also continued his love of stage acting at the Colonial Theatre in Johnstown as John Proctor in The Crucible, one of his favored roles.
In 1977 he returned to New York City and The Actor’s Studio and worked with Ed Bullens at The Public Theatre in Vincent Paul, Paul Vincent playing Vincent Van Gogh. He worked with John Stix, did One Day at a Time, and Night of The Iguana at the Marilyn Monroe theater. He drove a cab, did print work, and acted in the Russian play, The Last Summer at Chulimsk at the Lincoln Square Theatre.


In 1982 he met and married his second wife, Babette Stern, and they had a daughter together in 1987. Raymond continued doing multiple small parts in films, television and print and commercials. 
In 1984 Babette and Raymond bought a 20 acre farm in Rhinebeck New York that Raymond rebuilt and rehabbed and they opened the Rhinebeck Summer Theatre. Shortly thereafter he began to research Earthbound. In 1999 they moved to Northern Westchester, New York. Raymond continued to direct, act, and taught acting until his death in 2005.