About Donny Most

Actor | Singer | Director

As a child growing up in Brooklyn, NY, Don Most wanted to be just like the entertainers in his favorite film, The Jolson Story. While in junior high school, Don committed to the professional study of acting, singing, and dancing. At fifteen, Don got his first big break as part of a teenage musical revue that played the famous “Borscht-Belt” circuit of New York’s Catskill Mountains.

At age twenty, Don Most catapulted into the American zeitgeist when he won the role of Ralph Malph on the television pilot Happy Days. The role was originally a stock jock character. Director Jerry Paris and Executive Producer Garry Marshall were so charmed by Don’s charisma and natural comedic timing they reworked the part and transformed Ralph Malph into the beloved class comedian that won the hearts of America.

In the two decades following the success of Happy Days, Don continued to entertain and inspire audiences and earned critical acclaim in a long list of television and film roles. His film credits include EDtv, Crazy Mama, The Yankles, and The Great Buck Howard, starring John Malkovich. Don’s television roles include a recurring role in Glee, Men Of A Certain Age, Star Trek: Voyager, Sliders, Yes, Dear, The Crow, Sabrina, CHiPs, Baywatch, The Love Boat, Diagnosis: Murder, Century City, Dark Skies, and The Family Guy.

After years of working in front of the camera, Don realized his life-long ambition to direct with his first feature, The Last Best Sunday, in 1999. The film premiered at the Seattle International Film Festival and won Best Feature at the Telluride Indie Fest. Don’s second film, Moola, starring William Mapother and Shailene Woodley, earned the Outstanding Achievement in Directing Award at The Newport Beach Film Festival in 2007. In 2011 Don directed his first family film, Harley’s Hill, which premiered on Showtime, Starz and Encore.

Throughout his storied career Don Most’s dream of returning to his early musical days never wavered. Inspired by his love of swing, jazz and big band music, he created the musical revue Donny Most Sings and Swings. The show debuted in Los Angeles at Catalina’s Jazz Club in Hollywood, and Vitello’s Jazz Club in Studio City to great acclaim. Don’s act showcases his love of the great standards, and covers the likes of Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole, and his favorite, Bobby Darin.

Don Most married actress Morgan Hart in 1982 after meeting on the set of Happy Days. They have two daughters, Madison and Mackenzie, and live in Los Angeles, California.

Behind the Actor

“When I played Ralph on Happy Days, I was honored to work with Garry Marshall. Jerry Pars directed most of the shows with brilliance and became a mentor to me. I learned so much from both of these men and the advice they shared has been invaluable throughout my career. The cast was amazing and we became like a family. It was also great to act out what I believe were some of the most memorable scripts in TV history.”


“My role in the theatrical production of ‘Wait Until Dark’ required me to really stretch as I played a psychopathic killer. I spent a significant amount of time preparing for that role and was extremely proud of my performance. I am glad I was cast and that I was stretched as it was valuable for me in my career.”


“Being cast in the musical ‘Damn Yankees’ was a real thrill for me. I was a tremendous fan of Dick Van Dyke growing up so to be able to act alongside of him every night, was an honor.”


“Neil Simon’s play, ‘Barefoot in the Park’, is a very funny play. We performed it at a cool summer theater in Skowhegan, Maine – one of the oldest theaters in the country with an incredible legacy. The theater was located on a beautiful lake, and we stayed in cabins in the woods. Very idyllic. The utter joy of that show for me was working with the wonderful Maureen O’Sullivan. One of the great working experiences I’ve had. An incredibly warm, elegant and delightful woman. I’ll always remember that!”


“I so enjoy working with Ron Howard and it was impressive to be part of the movie ‘Ed TV’ and experience firsthand how far he had expanded himself as a director. Proud to call him a friend and professional colleague.”


“Another movie I enjoyed was ‘The Great Buck Howard’ where I had the honor of acting with John Malkovich. What a great actor and an amazing experience. Fun for me.”


“It was really cool to have a ‘Glee’ where I was able to act opposite of Valerie Mahaffey, a terrific actress. In fact, one of the episodes was directed by the amazing Eric Stoltz. Wonderful crew to work with.”


“I always enjoy working with my good friend and former co-star, Anson Williams. We did a dark comedy called ‘Take 2’ where we not only had amazing roles, but we both served as Executive Producers so we were involved in every level of the project. Challenging and fun.”


“One of the most challenging roles I played was as an alcoholic ex-ball player in the indie film ‘The Yankles.’ I had to dig deep to find the emotion and the way into the character’s head and heart to connect at a new level. A rewarding challenge for me.”