“A little audience gathered as she sang. Within 24 hours she was under contract.” – 1937 MGM Studios press version of Judy’s audition.
February 22, 1926: “The Gumm Sisters” (Judy and her sisters) performed at the seventeenth anniversary of the Canisteo Lodge #271 and Washington’s Birthday Dance, Masonic Order, Coleraine, Minnesota.
February 22, 1937: Judy sang at an MGM Dinner Dance. She sang her new signature song, “(Dear Mr. Gable) You Made Me Love You.”
February 22, 1939: The Wizard of Oz was in its final few days of filming (save for some retakes done in March and a few pick-up shots in June). This set still was taken on this day, featuring the Gale Farm, specifically the spot where Judy sang “Over the Rainbow.” Filming of the iconic number took place on either February 23rd or 24th or both. The final day of filming was the 24th with cast publicity photos done the next day.
February 22, 1941: Judy appeared on the Academy Awards show (then broadcast on radio) and sang “America (My Country ‘Tis Of Thee).”
Listen to that performance here:
February 22, 1945: Filming on The Harvey Girls continued with scenes shot on the “Exterior R.R. Station” which was the “Billy The Kid Street” on MGM’s Backlot #3.
February 22, 1946: This two-page article was published in the “Motion Picture Herald.” The article details the huge promotion of the opening of The Harvey Girls in Atchison, Kansas, which included a tie-in with the Decca Records album of songs from the film.
Images provided by Rick Smith. Thanks, Rick!
The “soundtrack album” of songs taken directly from the original studio pre-recordings did not come into existence until MGM formed “M-G-M Records” in 1946 and released selections from Till The Clouds Roll By on 78 rpm in 1947. In their February 22, 1947, issue “Billboard” noted that M-G-M Records was to release its first shipment of 78rpm discs on March 1, 1947. Clouds was their very first album with a record number of “MGM-1”.
Prior to 1947, the only soundtrack performances available to the public were a couple of 78s from RCA Records of selections from Walt Disney’s Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs (1937), and a few commemorative 78s in 1933 with parts of Max Steiner’s ground-breaking score for King Kong (RKO – 1933). But neither of these were released as “cast” or “soundtrack” albums.
Check out The Judy Garland Online Discography’s Till The Clouds Roll By pages for information about all of the releases of this soundtrack over the years:
February 22, 1947: Judy was scheduled for filming on The Pirate but canceled. The assistant director’s notes state: “Miss Garland was on her way to the studio, but had to return to her home as she was ill and nervously exhausted after spending a sleepless night.”
February 22, 1950: Here is the playback disc for the reprise of “You Wonderful You” in Summer Stock. The date on the disc is the date the disc was created, not the date of the pre-recording. The song was pre-recorded on February 13, 1950.
Label image provided by John Newton. Thanks, John!
February 22, 1957: Judy’s performance in The Wizard of Oz as shown on TV in 1956 was apparently considered for an Emmy Award.
According to this article published on February 21st, 22nd, and 23rd, there was some controversy about the Emmy Awards and their nomination process. Noted in the article was the withdrawal of “the odd notation of Judy Garland for ‘Best Actress – Single Performance’ in the old 1939 movie, ‘The Wizard of Oz…'”
The film premiered on CBS TV in 1956 and was not shown again until 1959 at which time it became an annual tradition.
February 22, 1957: Judy recorded “Mean To Me”; “By Myself”; and “Blue Prelude” for the “Alone” album at the Capitol Records Studios in Hollywood, California. The album was released on May 6, 1957.
Listen to “Mean To Me” here:
Listen to “By Myself” here:
Listen to “Blue Prelude” here:
February 22, 1959: Judy’s sold-out performances at The Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami, Florida, were still going strong. Judy was featured on the cover of the local “Amusements” newspaper “magazine” insert although the actual article was simply a news blurb.
February 22, 1963: Judy and husband Sid Luft returned to their suite at the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco at 6:30 p.m., to pack and “catch a train,” Judy told a fan. From 8:25 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. they bought magazines in the hotel’s newsstand, then left in a rented car at 8:30 p.m. The papers were reporting that Judy and Sid were “in seclusion having a second honeymoon” but they were also both also recovering from a case of Asian flu. Judy quipped to the press “we’re a couple of sick honeymooners.”
Currently playing in theaters was Judy’s latest film, A Child Is Waiting, co-starring Burt Lancaster.