David Canary

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David Canary
BornDavid Hoyt Canary
(1938-08-25) August 25, 1938 (age 76)
Elwood, Indiana, United States
Years active1967–present
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David Canary
BornDavid Hoyt Canary
(1938-08-25) August 25, 1938 (age 76)
Elwood, Indiana, United States
Years active1967–present

David Hoyt Canary (born August 25, 1938) is an American actor, who starred in both soap operas and prime time television. He is best known for his roles as the ranch foreman, Candy Canaday on Bonanza (a role he played from 1967–1970; 1972–1973) and identical twins Adam Chandler from 1983 to 2010 and Stuart Chandler from 1984 to 2009 on the daytime serial, All My Children. He has won five Daytime Emmy Awards for Lead Actor in 1988, 1989, 1993, 1995 and 2001, and has been nominated an additional eleven times, most recently in 2008.


Early life[edit]

Although Canary was born in Elwood, Indiana, he grew up and attended high school in Massillon, Ohio. He played football for the Massillon Tigers of Washington High School before earning a football scholarship to the University of Cincinnati, where he trained as a singer and became a member of the Sigma Chi fraternity. "I got it from both sides. The guys on the football team laughed about the music studies. My musical classmates could not believe I was a jock," says Canary.[1] Acting soon became his goal following college performances and summer stock shows. Three days after his graduation, he went to New York City and landed a chorus line job on Broadway.[2]


After a semi-regular role as Russ Gehring in the prime time serial Peyton Place, Canary came to international prominence in 1967 on the Western series Bonanza.

In 1967, he appeared in the now-classic western movie Hombre, in which he was featured with Paul Newman, Richard Boone, and Cameron Mitchell. Canary guest starred in a two-part episode of CBS's Gunsmoke entitled "Nitro", played a mobster with Jason Robards in the film The St. Valentine's Day Massacre, and appeared on the short-lived CBS western Dundee and the Culhane.

A contract dispute that year between Leonard Nimoy and the producers of Star Trek forced Herb Solow, Robert H. Justman and Gene Roddenberry to compile a list of candidates for consideration to takeover the role of Mr. Spock. As revealed in Solow and Justman's book, Star Trek - The Inside Story, Canary was one of the "A List" candidates.

When David Dortort (Bonanza, The High Chaparral, The Cowboys creator/producer), was looking for a new foreman for the Ponderosa Ranch, he saw Canary in Hombre and cast him in the role because Canary was "the kind of kid who comes on and suddenly there's nobody else on the screen". Canary left Bonanza in June 1970 after a contract dispute. He returned after Dan Blocker's death in May 1972. Canary said that he loved Bonanza, except for filming in Nevada in 100-degree heat.

Canary appeared on Broadway with Colleen Dewhurst in Great Day In The Morning and with Geraldine Page in Tennessee Williams' Clothes For A Summer Horse. He has done numerous musical/stage roles in shows such as Kismet, Man Of La Mancha, and The Fantastics, as well as dramatic performances in The Seagull and Macbeth.

In 1981, he assumed the role of Steve Frame on the soap opera Another World. However, the effort to revive the Steve/Alice/Rachel triangle was largely unsuccessful, and Canary left the show in 1983 after the character of Steve Frame was killed off in a car crash.

Later in 1983, he joined the cast of All My Children in the role of the cunning Adam Chandler.[3][4] That same year, he was also cast as Adam's meek twin brother, Stuart. The actor brought several facets to the twins, portraying the impeccably dressed Adam as a cut-throat businessman and the big-hearted, guileless Stuart appearing with mussed hair, loud sweaters, hiked pants and an occasional droopy sock. One familiar publicity shot of the character shows him with one shirt collar under his sweater and the other collar over the sweater. In May 2009, Adam accidentally shot and killed Stuart while using prescribed narcotics. Canary retired from full-time acting and departed from All My Children in April 2010 (last taping in late March and last airing April 23, 2010). Adam left Pine Valley to regain both his health and the love of Brooke English (Julia Barr), an ex-wife.

Another daytime television role he was on was Search for Tomorrow. Other prime-time television guest appearances include: Law & Order, Touched by an Angel, S.W.A.T., Primas, Alias Smith and Jones, Police Story, Kung-Fu, Hawaii Five-O, Remember WENN, and Cimarron Strip. The actor also appeared as the locomotive engineer in the movie Atomic Train. In 2004, he appeared as mathematical genius Robert in a well-reviewed production of David Auburn's Proof in Canton, Ohio, near his hometown of Massillon.

Canary has been known to be most affable and accessible to fans of both All My Children and Bonanza. At Disney resorts, he has done "meet and greet" appearances signing autographs for AMC fans. The actor has also made several appearances at the Lake Tahoe site of the Ponderosa ranch, a tourist attraction from 1967-2004. His last appearance at the Ponderosa ranch, as Candy, was in 2002 for a PAX-TV special.

When Canary departed the soap, he had stated he intended to return to AMC occasionally. Canary returned to All My Children to reprise both of his roles as Adam and Stuart Chandler for several days before its September 23, 2011, finale on ABC. In 2013, he returned to the role of Adam when the show began to produce online episodes.



1967HombreLamar Dean
1967The St. Valentine's Day MassacreFrank Gusenberg
1969The Computer Wore Tennis ShoesMr. Walski
1973Incident on a Dark StreetPeter GallagherTV Movie
1974Melvin Purvis: G-ManEugene T. FarberTV Movie
1975Sharks' TreasureLarry
1975Johnny FirecloudJesse
1994Secret SantaSantaShort film
1965-1966Peyton PlaceDr. Russ Gehrig26 episodes
1967GunsmokeGeorge McClaneyEpisodes: "Nitro Part 1 & 2"
1967Dundee and the CulhaneCharlie MontanaEpisode: "The Dead Man's Brief"
1967Cimarron StripTal St. JamesEpisode: "Knife in the Darkness"
1967–1970, 1972–1973BonanzaCandy Canaday
1971The F.B.I.Eugene BradshawEpisode: "The Last Job"
1971Hawaii Five-OGeorgeEpisode: "3000 Miles to Honolulu"
1971Bearcats!Joe BascomEpisode: "Hostages"
Alias Smith and JonesSheriff W.D. Coffin
Doc Donovan
Episode: "Everything Else You Can Steal"
Episode: "The Strange Fate of Conrad Meyer Zulick"
1973Police StoryWally BakerEpisode: "Death on Credit"
1973Kung FuFrank GroganEpisode: "The Elixir"
The RookiesTJ Curlew
Episode: "Down Home Boy"
Episode: "A Test of Courage"
1975S.W.A.T.Blake PhillipsEpisode: "Kill S.W.A.T."
1978The Dain CurseJack Santos
1978Search for TomorrowArthur Benson
1981-1983Another WorldSteve Frame
1982American PlayhouseBinghamEpisode: "King of America"
1984-2011, 2013-
1984-2009, 2011
All My ChildrenAdam Chandler
Stuart Chandler
1997Remember WENNLuke LanglyEpisode: "Strange Bedfellows"
1998Law & OrderJeremy OrensteinEpisode: "Venom"
One Life to LiveAdam Chandler
2001Touched by an AngelCarter WinslowEpisodes: "Shallow Water Part 1 & 2"
2011Curb Your EnthusiasmWhite Haired Man at ParkEpisode: "The Bi-Sexual"

It was announced in March 2012 that David would replace the ailing ninety-year-old Jack Klugman in a limited run production of Twelve Angry Men in New Brunswick, New Jersey for that month.


He has won five Daytime Emmy Awards as 'Outstanding Lead Actor', and has been nominated an additional eleven times, most recently in 2008 for Best Lead Actor. A baritone, Canary has performed in such musicals as, Man of La Mancha, Sweeny Todd, Kismet, and Carousel, as well as performing in dramatic pieces such as The Seagull (Pittsburgh Public Theater, April 1981), and the one man play Clarence Darrow. Canary's favorite stage performance[citation needed] was Tennessee Williams' Broadway production of Clothes for a Summer Hotel with Geraldine Page.

Personal life[edit]

Canary is married to actress Maureen Maloney, with whom he has a son, Chris, and a daughter, Kate. He is the middle son of Hilary and Lorena Canary. His brothers are actor John Canary, who once had a role on All My Children and writer H. Glenn Canary (1934–2008). The brothers are great-great-nephews of Martha Jane Canary, a.k.a. Calamity Jane.[5]


  1. ^ http://www.nationalledger.com/pop-culture-news/david-canary-amp-all-my-chil-776178.shtml#.UEKnQO9dB3E
  2. ^ http://ponderosascenery.homestead.com/files/library/tvarticle14.html
  3. ^ Shister, Gail. "2 IMPOSTORS TAKING ON CHEF TELL ON WIOQ." Philadelphia Inquirer, The (PA) 10 Nov. 1983, FINAL, FEATURES TELEVISION RADIO: D14. NewsBank. Web. 11 Jun. 2014.
  4. ^ Shister, Gail. "PRIME-TIME ANCHOR SEEN AS MALE ROLE." Philadelphia Inquirer, The (PA) 17 Nov. 1983, FINAL, FEATURES TELEVISION RADIO: C18. NewsBank. Web. 11 Jun. 2014.
  5. ^ http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0133597/bio

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