Sunday, May 29, 2011

Judy Garland

Judy Garland (June 10, 1922 – June 22, 1969) was an American actress and singer. Through a career that spanned 45 of her 47 years, Garland attained international stardom as an actress in musical and dramatic roles, as a recording artist and on the concert stage. Respected for her versatility, she received a juvenile Academy Award, won a Golden Globe Award, as well as Grammy Awards and a Special Tony Award. She was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actress for her role in A Star is Born and for Best Supporting Actress for her performance in the 1961 film, Judgement at Nuremberg.
At 40 years of age, she was the youngest recipient of the Cecil B. DeMille Award for lifetime achievement in the motion picture industry.
After appearing in vaudeville with her sisters, Garland was signed to Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer as a teenager. There she made more than two dozen films, including nine with Mickey Rooney and the 1939 film with which she would be most identified, The Wizard of Oz. After 15 years, Garland was released from the studio but gained renewed success through record-breaking concert appearances, including a return to acting beginning with critically acclaimed performances.
Despite her professional triumphs, Garland battled personal problems throughout her life. Insecure about her appearance, her feelings were compounded by film executives who told her she was unattractive and manipulated her on-screen physical appearance. Garland was plagued by financial instability, often owing hundreds of thousands of dollars in back taxes. She married five times, with her first four marriages ending in divorce. Garland died of an accidental drug overdose at the age of 47, leaving children Liza Minnelli, Lorna Luft and Joey Luft.
In 1997, Garland was posthumously awarded a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. Several of her recordings have been inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame. In 1999, the American Film Institute placed her among the ten greatest female stars in the history of American cinema.

Early life

Born Frances Ethel Gumm in Grand Rapids, Minnesota, Judy Garland was the youngest child of Francis Avent "Frank" Gumm (March 20, 1886 – November 17, 1935) and Ethel Marion Milne (November 17, 1893 – January 5, 1953). Garland's parents were vaudevillians who settled in Grand Rapids to run a movie theatre that featured vaudeville acts.
Garland's ancestry on both sides of her family can be traced back to the early colonial days of the United States. Her father was descended from the Marable family of Virginia, and her mother from Patrick Fitzpatrick, who emigrated to America in the 1770s from Smithtown, County Meath, Ireland.
Named after both her parents and baptized at a local Episcopal church, "Baby" (as Frances was called by her parents and sisters) shared her family's flair for song and dance. Baby Gumm's first appearance came at the age of two-and-a-half when she joined her two older sisters, Mary Jane "Suzy/Suzanne" Gumm (1915–64) and Dorothy Virginia "Jimmie" Gumm (1917–77), on the stage of her father's movie theater during a Christmas show and sang a chorus of "Jingle Bells". Accompanied by their mother on piano, The Gumm Sisters performed at their father's theater for the next few years. Following rumors that Frank Gumm had made sexual advances toward male ushers at his theater, the family relocated to Lancaster, California, in June 1926. Frank purchased and operated another theater in Lancaster, and Ethel, acting as their manager, began working to get her daughters into motion pictures.


The Gumm Sisters

In 1928, The Gumm Sisters enrolled in a dance school run by Ethel Meglin, proprietress of the Meglin Kiddies dance troupe. The sisters appeared with the troupe at its annual Christmas show. It was through the Meglin Kiddies that Garland and her sisters made their film debut, in a 1929 short subject called The Big Revue. This was followed by appearances in two Vitaphone shorts the following year, A Holiday in Storyland (featuring Garland's first on-screen solo) and The Wedding of Jack and Jill. They next appeared together in Bubbles. The final on-screen appearance of The Gumm Sisters came in 1935, in another short entitled La Fiesta de Santa Barbara.
In 1934, the sisters, who by then had been touring the vaudeville circuit as "The Gumm Sisters" for many years, performed in Chicago at the Oriental Theater with George Jessel. He encouraged the group to choose a more appealing name after the name "Gumm" was met with laughter from the audience. "The Garland Sisters" was chosen, and Frances changed her name to "Judy" soon after, inspired by a popular Hoagy Carmichael song.
Several stories persist regarding the origin of the name "Garland". One is that it was originated by Jessel after Carole Lombard's character Lily Garland in the film Twentieth Century which was then playing at the Oriental; another is that the trio chose the surname after drama critic Robert Garland. Garland's daughter Lorna Luft stated that her mother selected the name when Jessel announced that the trio of singers "looked prettier than a garland of flowers". Another variation surfaced when Jessel was a guest on Garland's television show in 1963. He claimed that he had sent actress Judith Anderson a telegram containing the word "garland," and it stuck in his mind.
At any rate, by late 1934 the "Gumm Sisters" had changed their name to the "Garland Sisters." The trio was broken up in August 1935, however, when Suzanne Garland flew to Reno, Nevada, and married musician Lee Kahn, a member of the Jimmy Davis orchestra playing at Cal-Neva Lodge, Lake Tahoe.

Signed at MGM

In 1935, Garland was signed to a contract with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, supposedly without a screen test, though she had made a test for the studio several months earlier. The studio did not know what to do with Garland, as at age 13 she was older than the traditional child star but too young for adult roles. Garland's physical appearance created a dilemma for MGM. At only 4 feet 11.5 inches (151.1 cm), Garland's "cute" or "girl next door" looks did not exemplify the more glamorous persona required of leading ladies of the time. She was self-conscious and anxious about her appearance. "Judy went to school at Metro with Ava Gardner, Lana Turner, Elizabeth Taylor, real beauties," said Charles Walters, who directed Garland in a number of films. "Judy was the big money-maker at the time, a big success, but she was the ugly duckling ... I think it had a very damaging effect on her emotionally for a long time. I think it lasted forever, really." Her insecurity was exacerbated by the attitude of studio chief Louis B. Mayer, who referred to her as his "little hunchback". During her early years at the studio, she was photographed and dressed in plain garments or frilly juvenile gowns and costumes to match the "girl-next-door" image that was created for her. She was made to wear removable caps on her teeth and rubberized disks to reshape her nose. She performed at various studio functions and was eventually cast opposite Deanna Durbin in the musical short Every Sunday. The film contrasted Garland's contralto vocal range and swing style with Durbin's operatic soprano and served as an extended screen test for the pair, as studio executives were questioning the wisdom of having two girl singers on the roster. Mayer finally decided to keep both girls, but by that time Durbin's option had lapsed and she was signed by Universal Studios.
On November 16, 1935, in the midst of preparing for a radio performance on the Shell Chateau Hour, Garland learned that her father—who had been hospitalized with meningitis—had taken a turn for the worse. Frank Gumm died the following morning, on November 17, leaving Garland devastated. Garland's song for the Shell Chateau Hour was her first professional rendition of "Zing! Went the Strings of My Heart", a song which would become a standard in many of her concerts.

Garland with Mickey Rooney in Love Finds Andy Hardy (1938)
Garland next came to the attention of studio executives by singing a special arrangement of "You Made Me Love You" to Clark Gable at a birthday party held by the studio for the actor; her rendition was so well regarded that Garland performed the song in the all-star extravaganza Broadway Melody of 1938 (1937), in which she sang the song to a photograph of Gable.
MGM hit on a winning formula when it paired Garland with Mickey Rooney in a string of "backyard musicals". The duo first appeared together in the 1937 B movie Thoroughbreds Don't Cry. They became a sensation, and teamed up again in Love Finds Andy Hardy. Garland would eventually star with Rooney in nine films.
To keep up with the frantic pace of making one film after another, Garland, Rooney, and other young performers were constantly given amphetamines, as well as barbiturates to take before bed. For Garland, this regular dose of drugs led to addiction and a lifelong struggle, and contributed to her eventual demise. She later resented the hectic schedule and felt that her youth had been stolen from her by MGM. Despite successful film and recording careers, several awards, critical praise, and her ability to fill concert halls worldwide, Garland was plagued throughout her life with self-doubt and required constant reassurance that she was talented and attractive.

The Wizard of Oz

Garland as Dorothy Gale in The Wizard of Oz (1939)
In 1938, at the age of 16, Garland was cast as Dorothy Gale in The Wizard of Oz (1939), a film based on the children's book by L. Frank Baum. In this film, Garland sang the song for which she would forever be identified, "Over the Rainbow". Although producers Arthur Freed and Mervyn LeRoy had wanted Garland from the start, studio chief Mayer tried first to borrow Shirley Temple from 20th Century Fox. Temple's services were denied and Garland was cast. Garland was initially outfitted in a blonde wig for the part, but Freed and LeRoy decided against it shortly into filming. Her breasts were bound with tape and she was made to wear a special corset to flatten out her curves and make her appear younger; her blue gingham dress was also chosen for its blurring effect on her figure.
Shooting commenced on October 13, 1938, and was completed on March 16, 1939, with a final cost of more than US$2 million. From the conclusion of filming, MGM kept Garland busy with promotional tours and the shooting of Babes in Arms. Garland and Mickey Rooney were sent on a cross-country promotional tour, culminating in the August 17 New York City premiere at the Capitol Theater, which included a five-show-a-day appearance schedule for the two stars.
On November 17, 1939, Garland's mother, Ethel, married William P. Gillmore in Yuma, Arizona. It was the fourth anniversary of her first husband's death.
The Wizard of Oz was a tremendous critical success, though its high budget and promotions costs of an estimated $4 million coupled with the lower revenue generated by children's tickets meant that the film did not make a profit until it was re-released in the 1940s. At the 1940 Academy Awards ceremony, Garland received an Academy Juvenile Award for her performances in 1939, including The Wizard of Oz and Babes in Arms. Following this recognition, Garland became one of MGM's most bankable stars.

Stardom as an adult

In 1940, she starred in three films: Andy Hardy Meets Debutante, Strike Up the Band, and Little Nellie Kelly. In the latter, Garland played her first adult role, a dual role of both mother and daughter. Little Nellie Kelly was purchased from George M. Cohan as a vehicle for Garland to display both her audience appeal and her physical appearance. The role was a challenge for her, requiring the use of an accent, her first adult kiss, and the only death scene of her career. The success of these three films, and a further three films in 1941, secured her position at MGM as a major property.

Garland performing "The Trolley Song" in Meet Me in St. Louis (1944)
During this time Garland experienced her first serious adult romances. The first was with the band leader Artie Shaw. Garland was deeply devoted to Shaw and was devastated in early 1940 when Shaw eloped with Lana Turner. She was noticeably thinner in her next film, For Me and My Gal, alongside Gene Kelly in his first screen appearance. Garland was top billed over the credits for the first time, and effectively made the transition from teenage star to adult actress.
At the age of 21, she was given the "glamour treatment" in Presenting Lily Mars, in which she was dressed in "grown-up" gowns. Her lightened hair was also pulled up in a stylish fashion. However, no matter how glamorous or beautiful she appeared on screen or in photographs, she was never confident in her appearance and never escaped the "girl next door" image that had been created for her.
One of Garland's most successful films for MGM was Meet Me in St. Louis (1944), in which she introduced three standards: "The Trolley Song", "The Boy Next Door", and "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas". Vincente Minnelli was assigned to direct this movie, and he requested that make-up artist Dorothy Ponedel be assigned to Garland for the picture. Ponedel refined Garland's appearance in several ways, including extending and reshaping her eyebrows, changing her hairline, modifying her lip line, and removing her nose discs. Garland appreciated the results so much that Ponedel was written into her contract for all her remaining pictures at MGM.
The Clock (1945) was her first straight dramatic film, opposite Robert Walker. Though the film was critically praised and earned a profit, most movie fans expected her to sing. It would be many years before she acted again in a non-singing dramatic role.
Garland's other famous films of the 1940s include The Harvey Girls (1946), in which she introduced the Academy Award-winning song "On the Atchison, Topeka and the Santa Fe", and The Pirate (1948).

Leaving MGM

During filming for The Pirate in April 1947, Garland suffered a nervous breakdown and was placed in a private sanitarium. She was able to complete filming, but in July of that year she undertook her first suicide attempt, making minor cuts to her wrist with a broken glass.During this period, Garland spent two weeks in treatment at the Austen Riggs Center, a psychiatric hospital in Stockbridge, Massachusetts  Following her work on The Pirate, Garland completed three more films for MGM: Easter Parade (in which she danced with Fred Astaire), In the Good Old Summertime, and her final film with MGM, Summer Stock.
Because of her mental condition, Garland was unable to complete a series of films. During the filming of The Barkleys of Broadway, Garland was taking prescription sleeping medication along with illicitly obtained pills containing morphine. These, in combination with migraine headaches, led Garland to miss several shooting days in a row. After being advised by Garland's doctor that she would only be able to work in four- to five-day increments with extended rest periods between, MGM executive Arthur Freed made the decision to suspend Garland on July 18, 1948. She was replaced by Ginger Rogers.
Garland was cast in the film adaptation of Annie Get Your Gun in the title role of Annie Oakley. She was nervous at the prospect of taking on a role strongly identified with Ethel Merman, anxious about appearing in an unglamorous part after breaking from juvenile parts for several years, and disturbed by her treatment at the hands of director Busby Berkeley. She began arriving late to the set, and sometimes failed to appear. She was suspended from the picture on May 10, 1949, and was replaced by Betty Hutton.
Garland was next cast in the film Royal Wedding with Fred Astaire after June Allyson became pregnant in 1950. She again failed to report to the set on multiple occasions, and the studio suspended her contract on June 17, 1950. She was replaced by Jane Powell. Reputable biographies following Garland's death stated that after this latest dismissal, she slightly grazed her neck with a broken water glass, requiring only a Band-Aid, but at the time, the public was informed that a despondent Garland had slashed her throat. "All I could see ahead was more confusion," Garland later said of this suicide attempt. "I wanted to black out the future as well as the past. I wanted to hurt myself and everyone who had hurt me."

Renewed stardom on the stage

In October 1951, Garland opened in a vaudeville-style, two-a-day engagement at Broadway's newly refurbished Palace Theatre. Her 19-week engagement exceeded all previous records for the theater, and was described as "one of the greatest personal triumphs in show business history". Garland was honored for her contribution to the revival of vaudeville with a Special Tony Award.
Garland's personal and professional achievements during this time were marred by the actions of her mother, Ethel. In May 1952, at the height of Garland's comeback, Ethel was featured in a Los Angeles Mirror story in which she revealed that while Garland was making a small fortune at the Palace, Ethel was working a desk job at Douglas Aircraft Company for $61 a week. Garland and Ethel had been estranged for years, with Garland characterizing her mother as "no good for anything except to create chaos and fear" and accusing her of mismanaging and misappropriating Garland's salary from the earliest days of her career. Garland's sister Virginia denied this, stating "Mama never took a dime from Judy." On January 5, 1953, Ethel was found dead in the Douglas Aircraft parking lot.

A Star Is Born

In 1954, Garland filmed a musical remake of the 1937 film A Star is Born for Warner Bros. Luft and Garland, through their production company Transcona Enterprises, produced the film while Warner Bros. supplied the funds, production facilities, and crew. Directed by George Cukor and co-starring James Mason, it was a large undertaking to which Garland initially fully dedicated herself. As shooting progressed, however, she began making the same pleas of illness which she had so often made during her final films at MGM. Production delays led to cost overruns and angry confrontations with Warner Bros. head Jack Warner. Principal photography wrapped on March 17, 1954. At Luft's suggestion, the "Born in a Trunk" medley was filmed as a showcase for Garland and inserted over director Cukor's objections, who feared the additional length would lead to cuts in other areas. The "Born in a Trunk" sequence was completed on July 29.

Garland in A Star Is Born (1954)
Upon its September 29 world premiere, the film was met with tremendous critical and popular acclaim. Before release it was edited at the instruction of Jack Warner; theater operators, concerned that they were losing money because they were only able to run the film for three or four shows per day instead of five or six, pressured the studio to make additional reductions. About 30 minutes of footage was cut, sparking outrage among critics and filmgoers. A Star is Born ended up losing money, and the secure financial position Garland had expected from the profits did not materialize. Transcona made no more films with Warner.
Garland was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actress and, in the run-up to the 27th Academy Awards, was generally expected to be the winner. She could not attend the ceremony because she had just given birth to her son, Joseph Luft, so a television crew was in Garland's hospital room with cameras and wires to televise Garland's anticipated acceptance speech. The Oscar was won, however, by Grace Kelly for The Country Girl (1954). The camera crew was packing up before Kelly could even reach the stage. Garland even made jokes about the incident, on her television series, saying "...and nobody said good-bye." Groucho Marx sent Garland a telegram after the awards ceremony, declaring her loss "the biggest robbery since Brinks". To this day, it is still considered to be one of the biggest upsets in the history of the Academy Awards and generally felt that Garland should have rightly won the Oscar and her performance far exceeded Kelly's.Time Magazine lablled Garland's performance as"just about the greatest one-woman show in modern movie history" . Garland won the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress in a Musical for the role.
Garland's films after A Star Is Born included Judgment at Nuremberg (1961) (for which she was Oscar- and Golden Globe-nominated for Best Supporting Actress), the animated feature Gay Purr-ee (1962), and A Child Is Waiting (1963) with Burt Lancaster. Her final film, I Could Go On Singing (1963), co-starring Dirk Bogarde, mirrored her own life with its story of a world famous singing star. Garland’s last screen performance of a song was the prophetic I Could Go on Singing at the end of the film.

Television, concerts and Carnegie Hall

Beginning in 1955, Garland appeared in a number of television specials. The first, the 1955 debut episode of Ford Star Jubilee, was the first full-scale color broadcast ever on CBS and was a ratings triumph, scoring a 34.8 Nielsen rating. Garland signed a three-year, $300,000 contract with the network. Only one additional special, a live concert edition of General Electric Theater, was broadcast in 1956 before the relationship between the Lufts and CBS broke down in a dispute over the planned format of upcoming specials. In 1956, Garland performed four weeks at the New Frontier Hotel on the Las Vegas Strip for a salary of $55,000 per week, making her the highest-paid entertainer to work in Las Vegas. Despite a brief bout of laryngitis, her performances there were so successful that her run was extended an extra week. Later that year she returned to the Palace Theatre, site of her two-a-day triumph. She opened in September, once again to rave reviews and popular acclaim.

Garland before a concert, 1957
In November 1959 Garland was hospitalized, diagnosed with acute hepatitis. Over the next few weeks several quarts of fluid were drained from her body until, still weak, she was released from the hospital in January 1960. She was told by doctors that she likely had five years or less to live, and that even if she did survive she would be a semi-invalid and would never sing again. She initially felt "greatly relieved" at the diagnosis. "The pressure was off me for the first time in my life." However, Garland successfully recovered over the next several months and, in August of that year, returned to the stage of the Palladium. She felt so warmly embraced by the British that she announced her intention to move permanently to England.
Her concert appearance at Carnegie Hall on April 23, 1961, was a considerable highlight, called by many "the greatest night in show business history". The two-record Judy at Carnegie Hall was certified gold, charting for 95 weeks on Billboard, including 13 weeks at number one. The album won four Grammy Awards including Album of the Year and Best Female Vocal of the Year. The album has never been out of print.
In 1961, Garland and CBS settled their contract disputes with the help of her new agent, Freddie Fields, and negotiated a new round of specials. The first, entitled The Judy Garland Show, aired in 1962 and featured guests Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin. Following this success, CBS made a $24 million offer to Garland for a weekly television series of her own, also to be called The Judy Garland Show, which was deemed at the time in the press to be "the biggest talent deal in TV history". Although Garland had said as early as 1955 that she would never do a weekly television series, in the early 1960s she was in a financially precarious situation. Garland was several hundred thousand dollars in debt to the Internal Revenue Service, having failed to pay taxes in 1951 and 1952, and the financial failure of A Star is Born meant that she received nothing from that investment.A successful run on television was intended to secure Garland's financial future.
Following a third special, Judy Garland and Her Guests Phil Silvers and Robert Goulet, Garland's weekly series debuted September 29, 1963. The Judy Garland Show was critically praised, but for a variety of reasons (including being placed in the time slot opposite Bonanza on NBC) the show lasted only one season and was cancelled in 1964 after 26 episodes. Despite its short run, the series was nominated for four Emmy Awards. The demise of the series was personally and financially devastating for Garland, who never fully recovered from its failure.

Final years

Garland and Mickey Deans, at their wedding, March 1969, three months before her death
With the demise of her television series, Garland returned to the stage. Most notably, she performed at the London Palladium with her then 18-year-old daughter Liza Minnelli in November 1964. The concert, which was also filmed for British television network ITV, was one of Garland's final appearances at the venue. She made guest appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show, The Tonight Show, The Hollywood Palace, and The Merv Griffin Show, guest-hosting an episode of the last one.
A 1964 tour of Australia was largely disastrous. Garland's first concert in Sydney, held in the Sydney Stadium because no concert hall could accommodate the crowds who wanted to see her, went well and received positive reviews. Her second performance, in Melbourne, started an hour late. The crowd of 7,000, angered by her tardiness—and believing Garland to be drunk—booed and heckled her, and she fled the stage after just 45 minutes. She later characterized the Melbourne crowd as "brutish". A second concert in Sydney was uneventful but the Melbourne appearance garnered her significant bad press. Some of that bad press was deflected by the announcement of a near fatal episode of pleurisy.
In February 1967, Garland had been cast as Helen Lawson in Valley of the Dolls for 20th Century Fox. The character of Neely O'Hara in the book by Jacqueline Susann was rumored to have been based on Garland. The role of O'Hara in the film was played by Patty Duke. During the filming, Garland missed rehearsals and was fired in April. She was replaced by Susan Hayward. Garland's prerecording of the song "I'll Plant My Own Tree" survived, along with her wardrobe tests.
Returning to the stage, Garland made her last appearances at New York's Palace Theatre in July, a 16-show tour, performing with her children Lorna and Joey Luft. Garland wore a sequined pantsuit on stage for this tour, which was part of the original wardrobe for her character in Valley of the Dolls.

Personal life

Garland began a relationship with musician David Rose, and, on her 18th birthday, Rose gave her an engagement ring. The studio intervened because Rose was still married at the time to the actress and singer Martha Raye. The couple agreed to wait a year to allow for Rose's divorce from Raye to become final, and were wed on July 27, 1941. Garland, who had aborted her pregnancy by Rose in 1942, agreed to a trial separation in January 1943, and they divorced in 1944.
During the filming of Meet Me in St. Louis, after some initial conflict between them, Garland and Vincent Minnelli entered a relationship together. They were married June 15, 1945, and on March 12, 1946, daughter Liza Minnelli was born. In 1951, Garland divorced Vincente Minnelli.
She engaged Sid Luft as her manager the same year. Luft arranged a four-month concert tour of the United Kingdom, where she played to sold-out audiences throughout England, Scotland, and Ireland. The tour included Garland's first appearances at the renowned London Palladium, for a four-week stand in April. Although some in the British press chided her before her opening for being "too plump", she received rave reviews and the ovation was described by the Palladium manager as the loudest he had ever heard.
Garland and Luft were married on June 8, 1952, in Hollister, California, and Garland gave birth to the couple's first child, Lorna Luft, on November 21 that year.
Garland sued Sid Luft for divorce in 1963, claiming "cruelty" as the grounds. She also asserted that Luft had repeatedly struck her while he was drinking and that he had attempted to take their children from her by force. She had filed for divorce more than once previously, including as early as 1956.
Garland's fourth marriage was to tour promoter Mark Herron. They announced that their marriage had taken place aboard a freighter off the coast of Hong Kong; however, Garland was not legally divorced from Luft at the time the ceremony was performed. Her divorce from Luft became final on May 19, 1965, but Herron and Garland did not legally marry until November 14.
By early 1969, Garland's health had deteriorated. She performed in London at the Talk of the Town nightclub for a five-week run and made her last concert appearance in Copenhagen during March 1969. She married her fifth and final husband, Mickey Deans, at Chelsea Register Office, London, on March 15, 1969, her divorce from Herron having been finalized on February 11 of that year.


On June 22, 1969, Garland was found dead by Deans in the bathroom of their rented Chelsea, London house. The coroner, Gavin Thursdon, stated at the inquest that the cause of death was "an incautious self-overdosage" of barbiturates; her blood contained the equivalent of ten 1.5-grain (97 mg) Seconal capsules. Thursdon stressed that the overdose had been unintentional and that there was no evidence to suggest she had committed suicide. Garland's autopsy showed that there was no inflammation of her stomach lining and no drug residue in her stomach, which indicated that the drug had been ingested over a long period of time, rather than in one dose. Her death certificate stated that her death had been "accidental." Even so, a British specialist who had attended Garland said she had been living on borrowed time due to cirrhosis of the liver. Garland had turned 47 just 12 days prior to her death. Her Wizard of Oz co-star Ray Bolger commented at Garland's funeral, "She just plain wore out." An estimated 20,000 people lined up for hours at the Frank E. Campbell Funeral Chapel to view her body. James Mason gave a eulogy at the funeral, which was an Episcopalian service led by the Rev. Peter A. Delaney of Marylebone Church, London, who had officiated at Garland's marriage to Deans. Garland was interred in a crypt in the community mausoleum at Ferncliff Cemetery, in Hartsdale, New York.


Star for recognition of film work at 1715 Vine Street on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. She has another for recording at 6764 Hollywood Blvd.
Judy Garland's legacy as a performer and a personality has endured long after her death. The American Film Institute named Garland eighth among the Greatest Female Stars of All Time. She has been the subject of over two dozen biographies since her death, including the well-received Me and My Shadows: A Family Memoir by her daughter, Lorna Luft. Luft's memoir was later adapted into the multiple award-winning television miniseries, Life with Judy Garland: Me and My Shadows, which won Emmy Awards for two actresses portraying Garland (Tammy Blanchard and Judy Davis). English actress Tracie Bennett portrayed Garland to critical acclaim in a dramatization of her eventual decline and months preceding her death in a play titled End of the Rainbow at London's Trafalgar Studios. Both the play and Bennett received Laurence Olivier Award nominations.
Garland was posthumously awarded the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 1997. Several of her recordings have been inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame. These include "Over the Rainbow", which was ranked as the number one movie song of all time in the American Film Institute's "100 Years...100 Songs" list. Four more Garland songs are featured on the list: "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" (#76), "Get Happy" (#61), "The Trolley Song" (#26), and "The Man That Got Away" (#11). Garland has twice been honored on U.S. postage stamps, in 1989 (as Dorothy) and again in 2006 (as Vicki Lester from A Star Is Born).. Garland is mentioned in the 1998 horror film I Still Know What You Did Last Summer when the hotel clerk is explaining the history of the hotel in the Bahamas where the film takes place.

Gay icon

Garland always had a large base of fans in the gay community and has become a gay icon. Reasons often given for her standing, especially amongst gay men, are admiration of her ability as a performer, the way her personal struggles mirrored those of gay men in America during the height of her fame and her value as a camp figure. When asked about how she felt about being a gay icon, she responded, "I couldn't care less. I sing to people."
Some have also suggested a connection between the date of Garland's death and funeral on June 27, 1969 and the Stonewall riots, the flashpoint of the modern Gay Liberation movement, which started in the early hours of June 28.


Film Year Role
The Big Revue 1929 Herself, with the Gumm Sisters
A Holiday in Storyland 1930 Herself, with the Gumm Sisters. Includes Garland's first solo number, "Blue Butterfly."
Bubbles 1930 Herself, with the Gumm Sisters.
The Wedding of Jack and Jill 1930 Herself, with the Gumm Sisters
La Fiesta de Santa Barbara 1935 Herself, with the Garland Sisters
Every Sunday 1936 Judy. Short film. First role at MGM.
Pigskin Parade 1936 Sairy Dodd
Broadway Melody
of 1938
1937 Betty Clayton
Thoroughbreds Don't Cry 1937 Cricket West
Everybody Sing 1938 Judy Bellaire
Love Finds Andy Hardy 1938 Betsy Booth
Listen, Darling 1938 "Pinkie" Wingate
The Wizard of Oz 1939 Dorothy Gale
Babes in Arms 1939

Garland with Mickey Rooney in Babes in Arms
Patsy Barton. Garland was honored with an Academy Juvenile Award
"for her outstanding performance as a screen juvenile during the past year" for this film and The Wizard of Oz.
Andy Hardy Meets Debutante 1940 Betsy Booth
Strike Up the Band 1940 Mary Holden
Little Nellie Kelly 1940 Nellie Noonan Kelly, Little Nellie Kelly
Ziegfeld Girl 1941 Susan Gallagher
Life Begins for
Andy Hardy
1941 Miss Betsy Booth
Babes on Broadway 1941 Penny Morris
We Must Have Music 1942 Herself
For Me and My Gal 1942 Jo Hayden
Thousands Cheer 1943 Herself
Presenting Lily Mars 1943 Lily Mars
Girl Crazy 1943 Ginger Gray
Meet Me in St. Louis 1944 Esther Smith
The Clock 1945 Alice Mayberry
The Harvey Girls 1946 Susan Bradley
Ziegfeld Follies 1946 The Star ("The Great Lady Has An Interview" number)
'Till the Clouds Roll By 1946 Marilyn Miller
Words and Music 1948 Herself
The Pirate 1948 Manuela Ava
Easter Parade 1948 Hannah Brown
In the Good Old Summertime 1949 Veronica Fisher
Summer Stock 1950 Jane Falbury
A Star Is Born 1954

Judy Garland as Vicki Lester
Vicki Lester (Esther Blodgett). Garland won the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress in a Musical or Comedy and was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress.
Pepe 1960 Herself (voice only)
Judgment at

Mrs. Wallner
Mrs. Irene Hoffman Wallner. Garland received Oscar and Golden Globe nominations for
best supporting actress.
Gay Purr-ee 1962 Mewsette (voice only)
A Child is Waiting 1963 Jean Hansen
I Could Go On Singing 1963 Jenny Bowman

Unfinished films

  • The Barkleys of Broadway (1949) - Garland was taking prescription sleeping medication along with illicitly obtained pills containing morphine. These in combination with migraine headaches led Garland to miss several shooting days in a row. After being advised by Garland's doctor that she would only be able to work in four- to five-day increments with extended rest periods between, MGM executive Arthur Freed suspended Garland on July 18, 1948. She was replaced with Ginger Rogers.
  • Annie Get Your Gun (1950) - Garland was nervous at the prospect of playing Annie Oakley—a role strongly identified with Ethel Merman—anxious about appearing in an unglamourous role after breaking from juvenile parts for several years and disturbed by her treatment at the hands of director Busby Berkeley. She began arriving late to the set and would sometimes not show up at all. She was suspended from the picture on May 10, 1949 and replaced with Betty Hutton.
  • Royal Wedding (1951) - Having been called in to replace a pregnant June Allyson, Garland again failed to report to the set on multiple occasions after costume tests and rehearsals with Fred Astaire and director Charles Walters. The studio suspended her contract on June 17, 1950 and replaced her with Jane Powell.
  • Harlow (1965) - Garland was called in to play the mother of Jean Harlow in the movie to which Garland accepted, but then she had second thoughts about the slapdash quality of the project and quit the film. She was to be replaced by Eleanor Parker, who then quickly went in and out of the project, and Parker was fired from the movie. Ultimately, the role of Mama Jean Bello would be played by Ginger Rogers, who made her last film appearance in the movie.
  • Valley of the Dolls (1967) - Garland was cast as Helen Lawson in the film version of Jacqueline Susann's bestseller featuring the character of Neely O'Hara (played by Patty Duke), who was largely based upon Garland herself. As with previous projects, Garland missed days of work, blew repeated takes and delayed production by refusing to leave her dressing room. She was replaced in April 1967 with Susan Hayward.


Garland appeared in concert over 1,100 times. Listed below are some of her key concert performances.
Date Location Notes
July 10, 1943 Philadelphia Gives first solo concert at the Robin Hood Dell; Andre Kostelanetz conducts the orchestra.
April 9, 1951 London Garland opens her new show at the London Palladium; the show is performed twice nightly with Wednesday and Saturday matinees.
July 1, 1951 Dublin Performs in Ireland at the Theatre Royal, Dublin for 14 sold-out performances where her show was performed for 50,000 people which was unprecedented for the time. Upon arrival in Dublin, she was met by huge crowds to whom she sang from her dressing room window.
October 16, 1951 New York City The legendary Palace Theater opening - the show runs for 19 weeks and breaks all box office records. She returns from 11/16/51–2/24/52.
1956 New Frontier Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada Garland performed a four-week stand for a salary of $55,000 per week, making her the highest-paid entertainer to work in Las Vegas to date. Despite a brief bout of laryngitis, her performances there were so successful that her run was extended an extra week.
May 11, 1959 New York City Opens at the Metropolitan Opera House, in New York for a 7 night run.
October 3, 5, 1960 Paris Palais de Chaillot, dubbed by French critics "La Piaf Americaine"
October 28–29, 1960 Paris Concert at the famed Olympia
October 1960 Amsterdam The concert is broadcast live on European radio and is considered to be on a par with the Carnegie Hall performance the following year.
April 23, 1961 New York City The legendary concert at Carnegie Hall.
September 16, 1961 Los Angeles, CA Performs the Carnegie Hall concert at the Hollywood Bowl to sold out audience in spite of heavy rain.
May 1964 Sydney/Melbourne Perhaps Garland's most unsuccessful tour and causes much controversy. The reviews for the two Sydney concerts were positive. However, the Melbourne portion of the tour was a disaster for her. The audience was angry over her late appearance and she was unable to remember lyrics and to slur those that she did remember. She left the stage in tears after only 20 minutes. It was the first time in her career that she received negative notices and she was heckled and jeered by an audience.
November 8, 15, 1964 London Performs at the London Palladium with daughter Liza Minnelli in a one-off event for ITV. The concert is recorded and released as a 2 record album LP set by Capitol Records.
July 31, 1967 New York City Returns to the Palace Theatre for a 4 week sold-out run.
August 31, 1967 Boston Largest audience; over 100,000 people attend her free outdoor concert on the Boston Common.
December 25 & 27, 1967 New York Appeared at Madison Square Garden's Felt Forum theatre.
March 25, 1969 Copenhagen Garland's final concert, at the Falkoner Centre in Copenhagen, Denmark.


Key Garland television appearances include:
Date Title Network Notes
September 24, 1955 Ford Star Jubilee CBS The first full-scale color telecast on CBS.
April 8, 1956 General Electric Theater CBS Slated to be the first of a series of CBS specials under a three-year, $300,000 contract with Garland, this was the only one produced before the relationship between Garland and husband Sid Luft and CBS broke down in a dispute over the planned format of upcoming specials.
February 25, 1962 The Judy Garland Show CBS Featured Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin. Nominated for four Emmy awards.
March 19, 1963[19] Judy Garland and Her Guests Phil Silvers and Robert Goulet CBS Nominated for an Emmy.
September 29, 1963 - March 29, 1964 The Judy Garland Show CBS Garland's only regular series. Canceled after one season and 26 episodes. Garland and the series were Emmy-nominated.
December 1, 1964 Judy and Liza at the Palladium ITV Broadcast of the November 1964 appearance with Liza Minnelli.
January 19, 1969[21] Sunday Night at the London Palladium ITV


  1. Thank you, Loulou - great homage.

    - Glenn

  2. Thank you Glenn im glad you like this homage to Judy!!!!