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Classically Speaking:
Promoting Classic Movies in a Jaded World!

Saturday, March 17, 2007


Vera-EllenVERA-ELLEN (1921-1981) born Vera-Ellen Westmeyer Rohe, began dancing at age 10. She went to the same ballroom dance studio in Cincinatti as Doris Day. In fact, the parents of the two girls carpooled. Vera-Ellen as a teenager began one of the youngest Rockettes. She made her Broadway debut in 1939 at the age of 18. She appeared in several Broadway musicals and was discovered in 1945 by Samuel Goldwyn. She appeared in many light-hearted films and became a dancing sensation. She was beautiful, graceful and had that sweet, wholesome appeal. Her dancing was always vibrant and vivacious. Vera-Ellen was truly a dancing legend during Hollywood's "Golden Age" of musicals in the 1940s and 1950s. I first saw Vera-Ellen in White Christmas. I watched the film initially to see Danny Kaye and Bing Crosby, but became quickly captivated by Vera-Ellen. She was amazing. I adored the "Sisters" number. The costumes were gorgeous and the lyrics were fun. White Christmas was also made as Holiday Inn with a similar story. Many people prefer this film to the other, but not me. I adore Vera-Ellen.

White Christmas (1954)Haven't you seen White Christmas (1954)? Vera-Ellen played Judy Haynes (the younger sister in a sister act known as "The Haynes Sisters". Rosemary Clooney played her sister. Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye also star in this warm-hearted romantic musical and endearing Christmas film. Vera-Ellen's numbers are "The Best Things Happen When You're Dancing", "Sisters", "Mandy", "Geee! I Wish I Was Back in the Army", "Snow", "White Christmas", and "Choreography".

Watch this and then see these other four films.

Happy Go Lovely (1951) Vera-Ellen played Janet Jones in this light-hearted romance opposite David Niven.
On the Town (1949) She played Ivy Smith 'Miss Turnstiles', love interest of Gene Kelly. Her musical numbers are "Miss Turnstiles Ballet", "Main Street", "On the Town", and "A Day In New York Ballet".
Three Little Words (1950) She played Jessie Brown/Jessie Kalmar, opposite Fred Astaire. Her musical numbers are "Where Did You Get That Girl?", "Mr. and Mrs. Hoofer at Home", "Come on, Papa", "Nevertheless", and "Thinking of You".
Wonder Man (1945) She played Midge Mallon, opposite Danny Kaye. Her musical numbers are "Bali Boogie" and "So in Love".

*Contributed by: "Elizabeth Van Cleve Randolph" Date: Mon, Mar 19 2007 / 10:13:28 PST