Judy Garland’s admiration for Gwen Verdon’s husband

Dance
Recently researching dance history at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, I came across this nugget from Gwen Verdon. In an interview, Gwen recounted a story with droll wit, Judy Garland once said to me, “Oh your husband has done such a marvelous job!” And I said who??? Because I really did ...

‘Pop’ goes the American Songbook, in Pasadena, under Feinstein baton 1

Film · Music
The Pasadena Symphony and POPS organization practiced what the Chinese call “double happiness” this week, announcing, in one fell swoop, the re-upping of conductor Michael Feinstein’s contract with the POPS (where he started in 2013) and the roll-out of a rich summer menu of American Songbook concerts at their bandshell digs in the Los Angeles ...

Thank you, Gene Allen

Dance · Film · Visual arts
Saddened to learn today that the great Hollywood art director Gene Allen, the man who converted director George Cukor’s vision to rich mise-en-scene, died October 7 of natural causes in Newport Beach. Allen, who lived a long life, perished at 97. Yes, Gene Allen, the much hallowed Academy Award-winning art director of MY FAIR LADY ...

REVIEW: Maurice Hines tappin’ to mother’s heartbeat @ The Wallis 1

Dance · Music · Reviews · Theater
The act was called Hines, Hines & Dad. But song-and-dance man Maurice Hines, 70, rectified any oversight of his mom, Friday night, as he opened his one-man show powered by personal history, “Maurice Hines is Tappin’ Thru Life,” at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts. The touching, classy, and beautifully staged cabaret program, ...

3-D Wizard of Oz at the Chinese 1

Film
We’re pleased to re-publish this wonderful essay by guest writer, Jan-Christopher Horak, Director of the UCLA Film & Television Archive, who first wrote it for his blog at the Archive. *         *         * Grauman’s Chinese Theatre on Hollywood Blvd. is an iconic landmark of the studio era. Any day of the week you can find ...

George Chakiris, choreographer’s assistant for Judy Garland’s 1956 Vegas revue 2

Dance · Music
An amazing zoom back in time with George Chakiris, who is not only Hollywood dance royalty but a gifted actor and Capitol Records recording artist. George, who celebrates his birthday today, worked with major talent over the course of his long career in stage, film, television and nightclub. He shared memories of assisting dance-director Robert ...

Fred & Cyd march on tippy toe in “The Band Wagon”

Dance · Fashion · Film
In this publicity still for “The Band Wagon” (MGM, 1953), Cyd Charisse marches on gorgeous gams while her partner Fred Astaire embodies a human exclamation point. In the movie, Cyd dons a different frock. Costumes were by Mary Ann Nyberg, who has a wonderful film-costume portfolio. Nyberg ran into problems dressing Judy Garland in “A ...

Russ recalls Rusty Tamblyn, child star of GUN CRAZY @ UCLA Film & Television Archive

Film
“I never owned one and could care less about guns,” said the gentle-spirited Russ Tamblyn before a sold-out house at the Billy Wilder Theater on Friday night. The conversation with Shannon Kelley, Director of Public Programs for the UCLA Film & Television Archive, followed a screening of cult-classic, GUN CRAZY (Monogram Pictures, 1950). Tamblyn, then ...

Judy Garland doesn’t care, and I don’t care either! 1

Dance · Film · Music
Judy Garland kills in the arts•meme theme song, “I Don’t Care,” from “In the Good Old Summertime” (1943). They say I’m crazy Got no sense But I don’t care They may or may not mean offense But I don’t care You see, I’m sort of independent I am my own superintendent And my star is ...