“It was the toughest number I’ve ever done. After it was over, I thought I was going to die. I nearly collapsed. Even Gene [Kelly] was so worn out that he had to flop down in a chair.” – Judy Garland, while making “Summer Stock” in 1950.
January 12, 1930: “The Gumm Sisters” (Judy and her sisters), billed as “The Hollywood Starlets Trio” (as they had recently been billed in Los Angeles), performed at their father’s theater, The Valley Theater, in Lancaster, California. The girls sang songs from their recent short films, including “When The Butterflies Kiss The Buttercups Goodnight” (from A Holiday In Storyland) and “The Land Of Let’s Pretend” (from Bubbles).
January 12, 1939: The “Film Daily” trade magazine listed Love Finds Andy Hardy as one of the ten best films of 1938.
January 12, 1939: Filming on The Wizard of Oz continued with the scene on the Yellow Brick Road just after the foursome (and Toto, too!) wake-up on the Poppy Field and complete their journey to the Emerald City. This short sequence was cut prior to the final edit of the film. The footage no longer remains, but we do have a few photos showing what it might have looked like.
January 12, 1942: Judy and husband David Rose were photographed out on the town in Miami, Florida, at the Frolic Club. The caption reads “First Time In Miami” which wasn’t true for Judy but was true for Judy and Rose as a couple. Judy and David must have taken a jaunt to Miami from New York just prior to their personal appearance tour of Army installations.
January 12, 1943: Judy was still in the throes of filming the brutal “I Got Rhythm” production number for Girl Crazy. These photos were taken on this day.
January 12, 1944: Judy was ill and did not work on Meet Me In St. Louis which she was currently filming. According to the assistant director’s notes filed by Dave Friedman:
At 11:20 last night Judy Garland phoned Al Jennings, assistant director and said she was ill, she still had her headache, her eyes were beginning to swell, and that she would be unable to come in at all today. Mr. Jennings called me, and I notified Mr. Freed [the film’s producer]. Decision was made to let the crew come in and line, light, and rehearse the difficult boom shot we planned for today, going as far as we could without Miss Garland. As a result, company did not shoot today.
January 12, 1945: The first day of filming on The Harvey Girls consisted of scenes on the “Exterior Balcony” and “Interior Dormitory” sets, including the “It’s A Great Big World” number with co-stars Virginia O’Brien and Cyd Charisse. The filming of these scenes lasted for several days.
Per the production notes:
Last night Judy Garland was given a call for this morning, by the assistant: 8:00 in makeup; 10:10 ready on set. She told him she wouldn’t be in until 8:30 as she didn’t need more than an hour and a half for makeup. This morning she arrived at the studio at 9:25, onstage at 10:50, went into her dressing room and didn’t come on the set until 11:25. The company was dismissed at 6:12 p.m.
Listen to the existing prerecording of this song here:
Listen to the “pick-up” here:
January 12, 1947: Jay Scott’s photo column “Candidly, This Is Hollywood” features this photo of Judy with Margaret O’Brien, Red Skelton, and husband Vincente Minnelli, at a premiere although I don’t know which premiere it was. It certainly wasn’t the premiere of Till The Clouds Roll By (of which there are several photos) due to the different outfit Judy’s wearing, although it’s the right time period. Included above is a second photo from the same event, with Esther Williams chatting with Judy.
January 12, 1947: Filming continued on Easter Parade. Judy was in makeup at 7 a.m.; due on the set at 9 a.m.
The assistant director’s notes state:
At 9:05 a.m. Miss Garland called Wally Worsley from her dressing room to say that she was not feeling well and that she had sent for her doctor. She said that she would report to set as soon as doctor completed examination. Miss Garland on stage at 10:19, changing into wardrobe. Ready at 10:44 a.m. Judy was dismissed at 3:00 p.m.
January 12, 1950: Judy’s progress filming Summer Stock was noted by columnists Hedda Hopper and Harrison Carroll. On this day at MGM Judy filmed the rehearsal scene in Summer Stock, where the cast is seen rehearsing the number “All For You.”
January 12, 1951: Judy provided emcee services for the special radio program “Hollywood Party” (also known as the “Hollywood Testimonial Dinner”) paying tribute to Senator Dudley J. LeBlanc.
Judy performed “Stars and Stripes Forever”; “How Deep Is The Ocean?”; “You’re Just In Love” (with Vic Damone), and she engaged in a comedy skit with Groucho Marx.
January 12, 1954: The first of two days of filming on the “Interior Malibu House” set, specifically the party sequence, on A Star Is Born. This had been delayed from December 1953, when Judy was unhappy with her gown for the scene. Time started: 2 p.m.; finished: 5:30 p.m.
Some photos provided by Kim Lundgreen. Thanks, Kim!
January 12, 1961: Judy participated in a press conference at the Carlyle Hotel in NYC with director Stanley Kramer, regarding her participation in Judgment at Nuremberg.
Judy was staying at the hotel prior to moving to her new apartment at the famous Dakota, which was procured for her by her new agent’s (Freddie Fields) assistant, Stevie Dumler (Stevie Phillips?).
Photos provided by Kim Lundgreen. Thanks, Kim!
January 12, 1961: Leonard Lyon’s column mentions Judy’s attendance at the Broadway show “Gypsy” starring Ethel Merman.
“Rose” in “Gypsy” is one role that Garland fans have always wished Judy could have played. She definitely would have done an amazing job. She incorporated a couple of the songs from the show into her repertoire, performing “Together” with Liza on her TV series in July 1963, plus she performed “Some People” several times including this fantastic rehearsal recording from April 26, 1962, which was a part of the “live” recording session at New York City’s Manhattan Center, for the planned Capitol album “Judy Takes Broadway.”
Listen to Judy’s rehearsal performance of “Some People” below.
January 12, 1962: Judy signed this addendum to the “Employment Agreement” she signed on September 26, 1961, postponing the start date of filming The Lonely Stage (I Could Go On Singing) from April 16, 1962, to May 14, 1962.
January 12, 1964: “Episode Sixteen” of “The Judy Garland Show” aired on CBS-TV. The show was taped on December 13, 1963.
Judy’s guests were Ethel Merman, Shelly Berman, and Peter Gennaro.
Judy’s songs: “Everybody’s Doin’ It” and “Let’s Do It” (opener with Merman, Berman, and Gennaro); “Shenandoah”; “Makin’ Whoopee” (with Gennaro, then joined by Berman); and “[Ethel] Merman Medley.” The “Trunk” segment featured Judy singing “A Pretty Girl Milking Her Cow”; “Puttin’ On The Ritz” and her once-in-a-lifetime performance of “Battle Hymn Of The Republic” which she sang in tribute to John F. Kennedy who had been assassinated just a few weeks prior. JFK and Judy were friends and she was devastated by his death. She had wanted to do a tribute show just after the assassination but CBS nixed the idea, with one exec now famously telling Judy that in a week no one would remember JFK.