I love old musicals, and I am a big fan of the musical star Ann Miller.
I don’t know why, but she always was given the second lead, and she was beautiful, a good actress, a good comedian, singer, clever, and a fantastic dancer! It’s really unfair I think.
She was named Johnny at birth because her father wanted a boy. (tsss) And when her parents divorced, she was called Annie. She started dancing as a child to help with her rickets. Ann supported herself and her mother who couldn’t get a job because of her deafness. She started her first job as a dancer in the ”Black Cat Club” when she was 11 (she told them she was 18!). She then worked for filmcompanies, also lying about her age, until she got her first big break for MGM, replacing their dance-wonder Cyd Charisse, who had broken her leg, in the musical ”Easter Parade” (1948) Starring Fred Astaire and Judy Garland. She danced the fantastic ”Dancing the blues away” while in a metal corset, because her soon to be divorced husband had thrown her down the stairs after a beating. She broke her back and lost her baby due to that fall. She must have been in pain dancing!
This is an increadibly courageous woman and a fantastic dancer!
Shakin’ the blues away
Ann Miller invented the panty-hose! Yes, those panties we all wear today have been invented by a woman! Inventions of women get quickly overlooked, so I am glad to be able to share this with you 🙂
Ann died at the age of 80, in 2004.
After musicals went out of fashion Ann went to perform on Broadway, television, you name it, an incredibly hard worker, and I am happy she also made a lot of money.
You can see on the photo left that she conquered her rickets and had some of the nicest legs ever seen on the planet.
I saw an interview with Ann Miller a couple of years ago, and I was só impressed! You know how all the stars are always complaining how they are being used, and the studio’s are draining them dry, forcing them to make bad movies, etc. While this is also true, women lead-actresses have only been getting the same pay very recently, and only a very few female actresses manage to get equal pay.
Still, it was impressive to hear Ann tell how much she loved her life as a contract actress for the big film-companies, how she was taken care off, and treated like a princess, and how she enjoyed it. It’s one thing to be treated like a princess, and another to be able to enjoy it! Even through the tv-screen she came across as a wonderful, warm personality. I already loved her in movies I saw on television as a kid, together with my mum, 🙂 , but knowing her story and seeing what a loving person she was in real made me a serious fan! I’m leaving you with another clip showing her fantastic dancing!
Too darn hot! From ”Kiss me Kate” (another great musical!)