“I enjoy doing impersonations of people I know. That’s easy, and fun. But this was something different.” – Judy Garland being interviewed about playing Sarah Bernhardt in a scene in “Babes on Broadway,” 1941
November 30, 1929: “The Gumm Sisters” were a part of “Big Brother Ken’s Toyland Revue” at Walker’s Department Store in Los Angeles, California. The sisters had previously been a part of the same show at the same store on November 16 and November 23.
November 30, 1931: “Baby Gumm” (Judy) performed for the Knights of Columbus in Lancaster, California.
November 30, 1940: This full-page ad appeared in the UK “Picturegoer” magazine.
Scan provided by Kim Lundgreen. Thanks, Kim!
November 30, 1940: Strike Up The Band was in theaters and proving to be another big hit. First up is a report on the trade magazine “Motion Picture Herald” about a local amateur band competition in Fort Wayne, Indiana, in connection with the film. Also from the same magazine, the regular “What The Picture Did For Me” feature included comments from theater owners about both Strike Up The Band and Andy Hardy Meets Debutante. The latter did “did not do any extra business” but was a “good Hardy Family picture” at the Iroquois Theatre in Petrolia, Ontario, Canada. The former was given the following extensive report from the theater owner of the Columbia Theatre in Columbia City, Indiana: “Better in all ways that ‘Babes in Arms.’ It has what it takes for any audience. Miss Garland is maturing and is a better actress than in her former pictures. She is getting the art of timing in her songs. And here is to one well little star, Larry Nunn, who is the unrequited lover of Judy, had an audience with him all the way. Mickey still has the fault of mugging to some extent. The cast back to the acting of the kerosene circuit days went well with the crowd. They seemed to enjoy that part the most of all the picture.”
“The Deseret News” in Salt Lake City, Utah, advertised this chance to win a Judy Garland doll, featuring Judy in her Strike Up The Band finale costume plus an ad from Allentown, Pennsylvania.
November 30, 1941: These photos (the first two) were published in the Chicago Tribune. These photos aren’t seen much these days even though a shot was used for the October 1941 issue of “Movie Life” magazine. Judy once again posed in the hay in 1945. Women romping in haylofts was a popular theme of photographers in Hollywood and in the more adult magazines that followed. Thankfully Judy was spared the latter!
November 30, 1941: Two Judys.
This Associated Press article focusing on Judy growing up made the rounds of papers around the country. Some editions trimmed some of the text. The full text is below.
Judy Garland Really Acts Like Two Other People
HOLLYWOOD, Nov. 29 – (Associated Press) – – Judy Garland is two persons, sort of, since her marriage.
By day, at the studio, she’s still regarded as a demure little actress of high school age, albeit more sophisticated and better developed physically than most high school girls. Both she and her studio say she is only 19.
M.G.M., having profited from her juvenile antics in company with those of Mickey Rooney, is slow to relinquish her to adult roles. Executives say they know of no one else who can play Andy Hardy’s sweetheart so satisfactorily.
By night, or at any time away from the studio, Judy’s a grown young woman, happy with and proud of the orchestra leader, Dave Rose, she married last summer.
Has Dual Personality
Watch Judy do a scene with Mickey for “Babes on Broadway.” She’s wearing a short dress with puffy sleeves, and she looks like a high school girl. At the moment she’s scorning Mickey’s attentions in what seems to be a puppy lovers’ quarrel.
Incongruously, during the rehearsals, she puffs at a cigarette, her wedding diamond blazing as she brings her left hand to her mouth.
Then call upon Judy in her dressing room. With the day’s work done, she has changed to blue slacks and is putting up her hair for the trip home. She’s not a high school girl now, but an attractive, sophisticated young woman.
“I’m letting my hair grow in its natural shade,” she explains, looking into her mirror as she dons a turban-like headpiece.
“It’s lighter in front, and we have to put this stuff (a dye) on it to keep it all the same color. That’s why I have to keep this clot on my head. I’ll have to sleep with it on tonight.”
Glamorous at Night
Often, too, you’ll see Judy in nightclubs, an elegant young lady in furs and silk. Always she’s with her husband, and usually Lana Turner and some young man are with them. It’s a far cry from the 14-year-old Judy who was a hit as the homely, freckle-faced, barefoot country girl – a miniature Judy Canova – of “Pigskin Parade” of 1936.
Has Difficult Role
Judy’s still a girl, then, by day – but there are indications of a change. The studio is planning more mature roles for her – and Judy says the acting assignments are becoming somewhat more difficult.
“These impersonations I do in ‘Babes on Broadway’ are about the hardest things I’ve had to do yet.”
The scene she refers to calls for her and Mickey to prowl about a dusty, abandoned theater. Suddenly the memory of past performances crowds in upon them, and Mickey appears, in a huge nose and a colorful costume, as Cyrano de Bergerac – as played by Richard Mansfield.
Judy Appears, in a drop hat with feathers, as the famous actress Fay Templeton. She sings “Mary Is a Grand Old Name.”
Mickey pops in as Sir Harry Lauder and sings “She Is My Daisy.” Judy returns as Blanche Ring, singing “Rings on My Fingers.” Finally Judy, as Sarah Bernhardt, gives a dramatic reading in French.
“That’s easy, and fun. But this was something different.
“Speaking in French was hard enough. I studied French for four years, in school, but I’ve forgotten most of it.
“But to impersonate actresses I had never seen or heard, but who had entertained many people who might see my impersonations – that was the really difficult part.
“Luckily, I had Elsie Janis as a coach. She was especially helpful with the Bernhardt role – and with the French.
“She was on hand when I did the impersonations, and she seemed pleased with them.”
Judy’s employers were pleased, too. They said she impersonated adult actresses so well that she might come to be regarded as an A.A. herself quite soon.
November 30, 1942: Judy and Mickey Rooney began production on their next film together, and last in which they co-starred, Girl Crazy. The day was spent in rehearsals from 10 a.m. to 4:45 p.m., which most likely was devoted to the “I Got Rhythm” number as that is what was pre-recorded and filmed first, while Busby Berkeley was still the director of the entire film. He was replaced by Norman Taurog at the end of January 1943.
November 30, 1943: Judy had more wardrobe, hair, and makeup tests for Meet Me In St. Louis. Time called: 1 p.m.; Judy arrived at 1:25 p.m.; dismissed: 3:45 p.m.
November 30, 1946: MGM placed this ad in the trade magazine, “Motion Picture Herald,” promoting The Yearling and Till The Clouds Roll By.
November 30, 1947: Here is a short notice about Judy and Gene Kelly beginning rehearsals for Easter Parade. The reality is that they began rehearsals for the film in late September 1947. On October 13 Kelly broke his ankle. Fred Astaire stepped into Kelly’s role on October 16 and began rehearsals that same day. This notice was over a month late!
November 30, 1952: Here’s a nice article about Judy’s ex-husband, Vincente Minnelli.
November 30, 1953: This short article claims that the scrapbook Judy, as Esther Blodgett, carries around the “Oliver Niles Studio” in A Star Is Born was one left behind by star Colleen Moore. However, in the finished film, it’s obvious that at least some of the pages are indeed photos of Judy giving rise to the later story that it was actually Judy’s personal scrapbook.
Also on this day, Judy has more filming on the “Exterior Night Club Terrace” and “Interior Esther’s Room, Rooming House” sets. Time started: 10 a.m.; finished: 5:20 p.m.
November 30, 1961: Judy had been confined to her hotel room in Miami Beach, Florida, having come down with an ear infection that forced her to cancel her planned concert at The Stanley Theatre in Jersey City, New Jersey.
November 30, 1962: Purrs for Gay Purr-ee.
November 30, 1963: First, an afternoon audio prerecording of a “Football Medley,” with a team of little boys (which had Judy singing “Buckle Down, Winsocki,” “You Gotta Be A Football hero,” and “Jamboree Jones”); then the dress rehearsal taping (from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.) and the taping of the final performance (from 9 p.m. to 10:30 p.m.) of “Episode Fourteen” of “The Judy Garland Show.” Judy’s guests were Bobby Darin and Bob Newhart.
Judy’s songs included: “Football Medley” (cut before the airing; the footage still exists); “Sing, Sing, Sing” with Darin and Newhart; “More”; and a “Train” medley. The “Born In A Trunk” segment had Judy singing “Do It Again” and “Get Me To The Church On Time,” followed by the “Maybe I”ll Come Back” closer. Judy also taped a wonderfully funny sketch with Bob Newhart about a couple watching “The Judy Garland Show.” The show aired on December 29, 1963.
November 30, 1965: Opening night of a two-week engagement at the Sahara Hotel in Las Vegas. Judy was paid $50,000 per week.
Judy and Mark Herron had flown to Vegas two weeks prior and gotten married on November 14th at the Little Church of West at 1:30 a.m. They went back to Los Angeles for Liza’s opening night at the Coconut Grove on November 23rd and were back in Vegas by the 29th.
Judy’s engagement at the Sahara was a successful one. Paul Rice reported in “The Sun” newspaper that: “[Judy’s appearance] may well have been the most fabulous night in show business … and I’ve never been much of a fan.”
Judy was backed by the 30-piece Louis Basil orchestra. Her songs were: “He’s Got The Whole World In His Hands”; “Almost Like Being In Love”/”This Can’t Be Love”; “As Long As He Needs Me”; “Just In Time”; “What Now My Love?”; “Joey, Joey”; “The Man That Got Away” (on some nights this was replaced with “Stormy Weather”); “Do It Again”; “By Myself”; “Rock-A-Bye Your Baby”; “San Francisco”; “Swanee”; “Judy’s Olio”; “Chicago”; and “Over The Rainbow.”
On Friday, December 10th, Judy and Lorna sang “Hello, Lorna!” and “Jamboree Jones.” On closing night, December 13, Judy also sang “Liza” in tribute to the next headliner at the Sahara, who was opening on Christmas Day.
It was reported at this time that Judy and Mark would spend the holidays in England and then return to New York in the middle of January for another “Ed Sullivan” show. These two events never occurred.
November 30, 1967: Judy returned to Las Vegas for a two-week engagement at Caesars Palace. The December 4th performance was canceled due to the death of Bert Lahr. Judy was upset about his passing.
Judy did only one show per night, at a special time: midnight. She appeared in the Circus Maximus room and there was often an overflow of 200 or so people who would stay outside of the room to hear her even if they couldn’t see her!
When a squeal came from the sound system, Judy quipped: “And that may be the best note you hear all night!” On one night, Judy was in such form that she gave a two-and-a-half-hour show!
November 30, 1968: By 5 a.m. on this morning, Judy had apparently lost control in her efforts to call John Meyer at his parent’s apartment (in Boston, Massachusetts). She began banging her head against the wall of her apartment in Cambridge, Massachusetts, so hard that her downstairs neighbor called the police. The police called doctors and by 8 a.m. Judy was in the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital in Boston. At 10 p.m. Meyer called and hospital room (#131) and reconciled with Judy.
November 30, 1993: Here is another stellar review of MGM/UA’s recent “Ultimate Oz” boxed set. The set, available in both the laserdisc and VHS formats, featured tons of new extras including (on the alternate channels of the laserdiscs) hours of previously unreleased recording sessions that miraculously survived over the previous five decades.
Check out The Judy Room’s Media Pages devoted to “The Ultimate Oz” here.