“Judy Garland is in it, which is always a step in the right direction.” – Dorothy Kilgallen, 1941
December 30, 1928: “The Gumm Sisters” (Judy and her two sisters) recreated their recent act (seen at the Los Angeles Loew’s State Theater from December 21 through 27) at their father’s theater, the Valley Theater, in Lancaster, California.
December 30, 1931: “The Gumm Sisters” (Judy and her two sisters) performed as part of the California Protective Artists Asociation Benefit for the Unemployed at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, California.
December 30, 1935: This photo was taken of Judy with Mickey Rooney and Jane Withers on the MGM lot. 13-year-old Judy had been with the studio as a new contract player for just a little over three months.
December 30, 1938: The last scenes of the “Munchkinland” sequence for The Wizard of Oz were filmed, completing the filming for that section of the film.
More pre-recording was done on “The Merry Old Land Of Oz” featuring Judy with Frank Morgan, Ray Bolger, Jack Haley, Bert Lahr, Tyler Brook, Ralph Sudam, Bobby Watson, Oliver Smith, Charles Irwin, Lois January, Elivda Rizzo, Lorraine Bridges, and the M-G-M Studio Chorus.
The photo above: Judy and Toto pose with the film’s producer, Mervyn LeRoy, and director, Victor Fleming, along with the Munchkins in a publicity photo taken during the film of the scenes with the little people several days earlier.
December 30, 1940: Judy, along with co-stars Lana Turner, Hedy Lamarr, and Tony Martin, filmed the extensive “You Stepped Out Of A Dream” production number for Ziegfeld Girl. Filming of the number lasted for two days, during which the cast posed on-set for publicity photos.
Special thanks to Kim Lundgreen for the bulk of the photos!
December 31, 1941: Babes on Broadway opened around the county over New Year’s, proving to be a great choice of a film to ring in the new year.
December 30, 1942: Judy had some wardrobe fittings for Girl Crazy. Time called: 9 a.m.; Judy arrived at 10 a.m.; dismissed: 3:00 p.m.
Photo: Judy on MGM’s Backlot #3, the “Western Street,” during filming.
December 30, 1943: Here’s a great three-page ad published on this day in the “Film Daily” trade paper. Below is a standard newspaper ad. Thousands Cheer, in spite of its light plot, was a big holiday Technicolor treat!
December 30, 1946: Judy posed for this costume shot for The Pirate.
December 30, 1947: Easter Parade filming continued with scenes on the “Interior Dress Shop” and “Interior Hannah’s Hotel Suite” sets. Judy was in makeup at 7 a.m.; arrived on set at 9 a.m.; dismissed: 6 p.m.
December 30, 1949: Summer Stock continued filming, specifically the “Friendly Star” number, which is one of the best ballads Judy ever performed on film.
Judy’s costume was a part of the Michael Siewert collection until it was auctioned in 2017, selling for $7,500.
Photos provided by Kim Lundgreen. Thanks, Kim!
December 30, 1950: This photo was sent out by the Associated Press to the various news outlets around the world. This is possibly the first news photo and write-up featuring Judy and Sid together.
The text that accompanied the photo reads as follows, but as you can see in the attached clippings, some papers wrote their own copy:
ARCADIA, Calif, Dec. 30 – – JUDY GARLAND AND PRODUCER ‘FRIEND’
Judy Garland, who revealed last week that she and her director husband, Vincente Minnelli, have separated, watches the opening day races at Santa Anita yesterday with producer Sid Luft. Luft was divorced Monday by Actress Lynn Bari. He told reporters at the time that he and Miss Garland were good friends, nothing more.
December 30, 1953: A Star Is Born continued filming with the first day of location shooting at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, including the “Gotta Have Me Go With You” number. The number took a total of forty takes over two days on the auditorium’s stage, followed by more scenes after New Year’s (“This Is Mrs. Norman Maine”) through January 5, 1954.
December 30, 1954: Two holiday related tie-ins for A Star Is Born, including the original soundtrack album, which was most likely under a lot of Christmas trees this year.
December 30, 1968: These photos were taken of Judy and Mickey Deans at the Ritz Hotel, London, England, presumably just prior to her opening at “The Talk of the Town” cabaret. The last photo is also dated with this day and is noted as showing the two leaving the Ritz Hotel, which must have been taken earlier in the day when the couple went out for some unknown reason.
Judy allegedly went through some physical exercises, and a yoga headstand, to relax before opening night, then took a long bath and a shower before her hairdresser came. The cabaret’s resident makeup artist, Vivian Martyne, was waiting for Judy when she arrived at the club that night.
Judy opened the already extended engagement (from four weeks to five weeks, earning about $7,000 per week), walking out at 11:15 p.m. (only 15 minutes late) to a star-studded audience that included Zsa Zsa Gabor, Ginger Rogers, David Frost, Danny LaRue, and Johnny Ray).
Judy’s songs included: “I Belong To London”; “Get Happy”; “The Man That Got Away”; “I’d Like To Hate Myself In The Morning”; “For Once In My Life”; “Medley: You Made Me Love You/For Me And My Gal/The Trolley Song”; “Just In Time”; “San Francisco”; “Rock-A-Bye Your Baby”; “Over The Rainbow”; and “Chicago.”
Recording from this engagement have been released over the years with varying (and usually poor) sound quality.
The 2015 3-CD release “Judy Garland – Swan Songs, First Flights” presents these recordings newly remastered – many on CD for the very first time. Check out the Discography link below for details about the release and where to purchase it – it’s amazing!
Here are a few highlights:
“Over The Rainbow”
“I’d Like To Hate Myself In The Morning”