“It was no accident that a ragamuffin Miss Garland always closed her show with the plaintive ‘Over the Rainbow’ from [‘The Wizard of Oz’], a bit of showmanship that left few dry eyes in the house.” – Jack Gaver, 1952, regarding Judy’s engagement at The Palace Theater
March 9, 1934: “The Gumm Sisters” (Judy and her sisters) performed at the Fox Theater in San Francisco, California. The Gumm family was working their way back to Los Angeles (and their hometown of Lancaster, California) after a tour of the West Coast.
March 9, 1936: This photo of Judy with Marlena Dietrich’s daughter, Maria, was published.
At this point, Judy was on the cast list for Born to Dance. In his March 10, 1936, diary entry, songwriter Cole Porter mentioned that to his “great joy” the casting included “Buddy Ebsen opposite Judy Garland.” By the time the film was made Judy’s part had been written out.
On this day, Judy had been with MGM for just five months and had not yet appeared on film although around this time she and Deanna Durbin were teamed in a one-reel test that was shown only at an MGM exhibitor’s convention. That footage doesn’t exist but the two were so successful in that test that MGM created the short Every Sunday which it’s assumed had the same basic plot as that one-reel test.
March 9, 1937: Judy made her weekly appearance on the CBS Radio show, “Jack Oakie’s College.” She sang “Something In The Air” as a love song to her “crush,” Sir Lancelot of the Arthurian legends. She also sang “Some Of These Days” with a special intro, probably composed by Roger Edens, as a tribute to Sophie Tucker who she would soon work with on Broadway Melody of 1938. Unfortunately, no recordings of this show are known to exist.
It’s been assumed that the recording of “Smiles” that Judy performed on the same show on September 28, 1937, was from this broadcast but it’s now known that it was indeed that September show.
Also noted in the papers was the fact that Judy had been signed as a weekly regular for thirteen weeks. After this broadcast, she did not appear on the show until March 30th due to her schedule at MGM making Broadway Melody of 1938. Judy stayed on the Oakie show until the final show of the series on June 22, 1937.
March 9, 1938: Everybody Sing and Judy Garland Dresses.
March 9, 1940: This article was published in the “Australian Women’s Weekly.”
March 9, 1941: Although it’s considered corny, and was at the time, Little Nellie Kelly still garnered good reviews thanks to Judy’s performance which won the critics over. Also on the bill, the Charlie Chan mystery “Murder Over New York.”
March 9, 1941: Judy wasn’t in Andy Hardy’s Private Secretary but she was among the girls listed as Andy Hardy’s (Mickey Rooney) best girlfriends even though her character, “Betsy Booth,” was never Andy’s girlfriend. Judy was never Mickey Rooney’s girlfriend either, for that matter.
March 9, 1942: More dance rehearsals for Judy and Gene Kelly for For Me And My Gal. Time called: 1:30 p.m.; dismissed: 4:30 p.m.
March 9, 1944: Judy was scheduled to be in the Meet Me In St. Louis set at 3 p.m., but at 1:20 p.m. she called from her home saying that her sinus was bothering her so badly that she was worried she would miss an important night shoot the following day if she didn’t rest.
Photo: Set design still of the Smith home dressed up for the Halloween sequence.
March 9, 1945: A busy day for Judy.
The Harvey Girls continued filming on the “Interior Harvey House” set, with Judy having an 11 a.m. call. She arrived at 11:29 a.m. The assistant director’s notes state: “4:50-5:15 – Discovered Judy didn’t like the way her hair was being fixed; her own hairdresser went home ill this morning and the substitute couldn’t seem to hit the right note. It would take too long for Judy to get ready as Judy had recordings to make right after six it was decided not to shoot any more tonight.” Dismissed at 5:20 p.m.
Judy and Bing Crosby recorded “Yah-Ta-Ta, Yah-Ta-Ta (Talk, Talk, Talk)” and “Connecticut” at the Decca Records studios in Hollywood, CA. The session lasted from 8 p.m. to 11:15 p.m.
“Yah-Ta-Ta” was released on April 19, 1945, on the A-side of Decca single #23410 (paired with “You Got Me Where You Want Me”). “Connecticut” was not released until January 20, 1947, when it was paired with “Mine” on Decca single #23804.
Listen to “Yah-Ta-Ta, Yah-Ta-Ta (Talk, Talk, Talk)” here:
Listen to the alternate take of “Yah-Ta-Ta, Yah-Ta-Ta (Talk, Talk, Talk)” here:
Listen to the “B” take of “Yah-Ta-Ta, Yah-Ta-Ta (Talk, Talk, Talk)” here:
Listen to “Connecticut” here:
Listen to the alternate take of Connecticut” here:
March 9, 1945: Meet Me In St. Louis (released in 1944).
March 9, 1946: Judy’s pregnancy (with daughter Liza Minnelli) was news.
March 9, 1947: “Elaborate Costumes Set for Garland.”
Judy was filming The Pirate (specifically rehearsing the “Voodoo” number) when this blurb was published about the lavish costumes designed for her.
March 9, 1949: “Rehearsal #2” for Annie Get Your Gun with Judy and co-star Howard Keel rehearsing the songs “Anything You Can Do”; “That Say It’s Wonderful”; and Judy’s solo of “You Can’t Get A Man With A Gun.” Time called: 11:00 a.m.; Judy arrived at 11:35 a.m.; lunch from 1:20 – 2:20 p.m.; dismissed at 4:45 p.m. The actual recording session did not happen until March 25th.
Photos: Earl Wilson’s March 9, 1947, column mentions MGM’s purchase of the show for $750,000; Erskine Johnson’s column disapproves of Judy’s casting (it also mentions the filming of Gene Kelly’s wharf scenes for The Pirate); Sheilah Graham’s column from March 7, 1947, mentions the MGM purchase of the Broadway show for $650,000; a 1949 MGM trade ad; Howard Heffernan’s column in which he notes Judy’s recent personal troubles.
March 9, 1949: Words and Music (released in 1948).
March 9, 1950: This uncredited article notes that Judy had just completed Summer Stock and would be taking a rest in Boston. It’s true that she had just completed Summer Stock, although the “Get Happy” number wouldn’t be recorded and filmed until mid-March. Judy did go to Boston briefly (see the March 20, 1950 entry) but it was a short trip. Newspapers reported that she would visit Europe with her husband Vincente Minnelli and daughter Liza Minnelli, but that didn’t happen. Instead, she spent time in Carmel, California, before being called back to MGM to work on Royal Wedding.
March 9, 1952: Judy and Sid Luft were vacationing in West Palm Beach, Florida, after her record-breaking engagement at The Palace Theater in New York. This article notes that Judy was set to throw the opening pitch in the upcoming (March 11) annual Society Baseball Game.
March 9, 1952: The fate of The Palace Theater was pondered in this article published in “The Pittsburgh Press.” Judy’s phenomenal success at the theater is noted, including a header “Garland Unbeatable.”
March 9, 1954: The last day of rehearsals on the “Lose That Long Face” number for A Star Is Born. Time started: 2 p.m.; finished: 5:15 p.m. Filming began the next day and continued through March 17, 1954, with some retakes on May 3rd through 6th.
Photos: Various shots taken throughout the “Lose That Long Face” rehearsals and filming, with Doris Day making a visit to the set. Choreographer Richard Barstow is seen with Judy and Doris. Photos provided by Kim Lundgreen. Thank you, Kim!
March 9, 1963: Judy’s upcoming special with Robert Goulet and Phil Silvers (aired on March 19, 1963) was garnering really good advance buzz.
March 9, 1964: The first of four days of rehearsals for “The Judy Garland Show,” “Episode Twenty-Six” which was the last show of the series.
Also on this day, Judy issued a check to Mel Burns For, 2000 Long Beach Blvd., Long Beach, California, for $163.88, obviously for her cars.
Photos: Judy singing “Suppertime” from the final taping of the episode in the early morning hours of March 14).
March 9, 1965: Judy and Liza in the news.
March 9, 1969: The annual showing of The Wizard of Oz on TV took place, broadcast by NBC. This was the last showing of the film on TV while Judy was still alive. Judy was in England at the time and thus was unable to watch the broadcast.