Judy Garland’s Centennial

When she was found dead in the bathroom of her London flat, 53 years ago, just 12 days after her birthday, Judy Garland was just 47 years old. She looked so much older, perhaps because she spent 45 years performing in public.

She is certainly still remembered as one of the biggest movie stars. Today, June 10, 2022, she would complete her centennial, and here’s a tribute to her.

Born Frances Ethel Gumm, the girl was part of a family of vaudeville artists and took the stage for the first time before she was 3 years old, singing with her two older sisters. They became known as The Gumm Sisters. At 13, she signed a contract with MGM, but by this time there was no longer the Gumm trio. Because of the pronunciation of the surname, which was sometimes used for a pun, the sisters had already adopted “Garland”, and Frances went further and switched her first name to “Judy” because she loved Hoagy Carmichael‘s song of the same name. So when she signed her movie contract, the family group had already broken up and she was, of course, Judy Garland.

Her talent and vocal range were undeniable, as well as her great comedy timing. In just 2 years she was already an international star. But fame only added to the pressure on appearance and the invasion of privacy. Always considered the “talented”, but never the “beautiful”, Judy gained insecurity that became chronic, forever affecting her mental and physical health.

Too small, a mere 1.51 m tall, not to look overweight, the star was on starvation diets, helped with appetite suppressant medication. When she starred in The Wizard of Oz, she was 17 years old, but she was still presented as a child. He managed to make the difficult transition from child star to adult, starring in musicals with Gene Kelly and Fred Astaire, for example.

Judy Garland‘s sentimental life has always been similarly troubled. She married 5 times, the first marriage only lasted 3 years and she was only 19 at the time. When she married director Vicente Minelli, the actress had her first daughter, Liza, with whom she would maintain a close and friendly relationship. until the end of her life. Her depression is believed to have gained more weight after the birth of her daughter, with her marriage to Minelli ending in divorce a few years later. No longer able to hide her personal problems, which caused delays and were obvious in her appearance, Judy was fired by MGM in the early 1950s. He tried to take his own life when he received the news.

She returned to the stage and recorded records, but, in 1954, she accepted to star in the remake of A Star is Born, which became one of her greatest classics. Her health delayed the recordings, critics didn’t love her performance but she was nominated for an Oscar anyway. She had the respect of the artistic community. She would again be nominated for a supporting role in a sweeping performance in Judgement at Nuremberg, in 1961, but lost again.

Married for the third time to Sidney Luft, Judy had two more children, Lorna and Joseph, performing more in theater and TV – to make money – than in the movies. There were 8 live albums and a season with The Judy Garland Show.

At 39, she was the first woman to receive the Cecil B. De Mille Award for her career achievement, but the Grammys and other awards have since been posthumous. The marriage did not resist the psychological instability of the star who accepted a long stay in England to be able to pay her debts with the IRS. She would never return to the United States alive.

The European presentations were the heart of the film, Judy, which in 2020 won Renée Zellwegger her second Oscar, but was rejected by the artist’s children.

Among a long list of hits, it’s curious that her least favorite song is precisely her most famous, Over the Rainbow. A beautiful prayer of hope and dreams, which marked her brief trajectory, and is always reminded of Judy Garland.

Deixe um comentário

Preencha os seus dados abaixo ou clique em um ícone para log in:

Logo do WordPress.com

Você está comentando utilizando sua conta WordPress.com. Sair /  Alterar )

Imagem do Twitter

Você está comentando utilizando sua conta Twitter. Sair /  Alterar )

Foto do Facebook

Você está comentando utilizando sua conta Facebook. Sair /  Alterar )

Conectando a %s