What Happened to the Lennon Sisters?
As of 2015, The Lennon Sisters continue to tour the country, performing an annual Christmas show at the Andy Williams Moon River Theatre in Branson, Missouri. Following Dee Dee’s retirement, the group now performs as a trio, and youngest sister Mimi has replaced Peggy, who also retired. The Lennon Sisters were inducted into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 2001.
The Lennon Sisters, a harmonic quartet of siblings, made their debut appearance on “The Lawrence Welk Show” on Dec. 24, 1955, with an a cappella version of the song “He.” The group became an instant sensation, and Welk booked them as regulars on his show, where they performed every Saturday night for more than 13 years. The Lennon Sisters consisted of 16-year-old Dee Dee, 14-year-old Peggy, 12-year-old Kathy and 9-year-old Janet. After gaining instant popularity, the sisters recorded their first album, “Let’s Get Acquainted,” in May of 1957. Nicknamed “America’s Sweethearts of Song,” the group’s albums flew off of store shelves, leading to further merchandising of items such as coloring books, doll collections and lunch boxes.
After she married, Dee Dee took a break from the group from 1960 to 1964, and the group continued performing as a trio. In 1968, the adult sisters decided to leave “The Lawrence Welk Show” so they could follow other musical paths. They started their own musical variety show with Jimmy Durante, called “Jimmy Durante Presents: The Lennon Sisters Hour,” but the sisters and Durante had different tastes and ideas, and the mixture proved to be ineffective. The show lasted only one season before the sisters became regular guests on Andy Williams’ television show, followed by frequent performances with him in Las Vegas, Nevada.