Tuesday, September 4, 2012

This Day in History September 4, 1931

Studio publicity Mitzi Gaynor
See page for author [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
It is possible that you have never heard of this person before.  Again, I am a student of Old Hollywood--especially musicals.  And I was surprised to discover that this lady is still alive and celebrating her 81st birthday!  On this date in 1931, Mitzi Gaynor was born.  Her birth name was Francesca Marlene de Czanyi von Gerber, and she was born in Chicago to a dancer and musician.

She had trained as a ballerina, and by the time she was thirteen, she was working as chorus girl.  Her family had moved to Hollywood when she was eleven.  At age 17, she signed a seven-year contract with 20th Century Fox.  By this time, she was going by the name Mitzi Gerber, and the studio decided they needed to change her last name because they thought it sounded like a delicatessen.

She starred in several musicals such as There's No Business Like Show Business and South Pacific.  She also did a series of television specials during the 1960's and 1970's.  In the 1990's, she became a columnist for the newspaper The Hollywood Reporter.  Amazingly, she was married for 52 years to the same person, and he died of pneumonia at the age of 84 in 2006.

She actually had a one-woman show in 2009 and 2010 that received great acclaim.  Indeed the lady does not quit!  I first saw her South Pacific and was shocked to see that she was a dancer--in fact, she known more for a dancer than anything else.  I have enjoyed her in everything of hers that I have ever seen, so pleas enjoy the following video clips.

From Anything Goes:
From South Pacific:
For more information, check out:


Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Your Ad Here