Dancing to Stardom
February 4, 2017 6:09pm CST
The very first time I saw this fantastic actor, singer and dancer was in the musical “Singing In the Rain”. He was Gene Kelly and I thought he was handsome and so talented. Afterwards I always tried to find more musicals that he starred in. Kelly was also a choreographer and he died on February 2, 1996 at the age of 83 in Beverly Hills, California. Kelly was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in 1912 and completed his education at the University of Pittsburgh during the Great Depression, graduating with an economics degree. Jobs at that time were scarce, so he worked at this mom’s dancing school. Together with his brother Fred, Kelly formed a dance act. They appeared at local nightspots and in theater productions. In 1938 Kelly decided to try his luck in New York City. His first job on Broadway was in the chorus line of “Leave It to Me” starring Mary Martin. Kelly’s first big Broadway success was in “My Pal Joey” and it sent him packing for Hollywood, California. Once he got to Hollywood again luck was on his side and he was signed to an exclusive contrast with producer David O. Selznick. In 1942 Kelly was lent to Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studio to star with Judy Garland in the musical “For Me and My Gal”. I have this musical on video and it is really a treat to watch. It seemed that whichever musical he starred in Kelly was a great success. Another wonderful musical to watch is “Anchors Aweigh” in which he starred with Frank Sinatra in 1945. For all cartoon fans in this musical Kelly dances with the animated mouse Jerry of Tom and Jerry cartoons. During WW II Kelly served in the U.S. Navy and returned to the screen in “The Pirate” again starring with Judy Garland. He once again teamed up with Frank Sinatra in another fun musical “On the Town” . In 1951 Kelly starred in “An American in Paris” a musical which won eight Academy Awards. His most memorable musical remains “Singing In the Rain” in 1952 in which he did his all time most popular dancing scene in the pouring rain. Another delightful musical was “Brigadoon” in 1954. After his first marriage ended in divorce he fell in love with Jeanne Coyne, a Broadway dancer, choreographer and actress in 1960. Kelly continued to perform and choreographed for the ballet in Paris, France and San Francisco, California. When his wife died of leukemia in 1973 Kelly was left to raise their two children on his own. He continued to make movie appearance and at times went behind the camera to direct. One of the movies which he directed was the popular musical “Hello Dolly!” starring Barbara Streisand and Walter Matthau in 1969. His last appearance on the big screen was in the musical “Xanadu” in 1980, performing a dance routine on roller skates. I am positive that once he passed away he danced his way across the big Milky Way in the sky. Do you like musicals? Have you seen any of the Gene Kelly musicals? Gene Kelly on skates in “Xanadu” http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/gene-kelly-dies
6 people like this
• Riga, Latvia
6 Feb 17
They are both great to watch in those old musicals @GreatMartin They have been together.
Performance memorável dos maiores ídolos da dança de Hollywood. Desfrute!