Friday, April 16, 2010
I just finished watching The Gay Divorcee (1934) starring Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire. I love old classic movies. I like anything with Ginger Rogers in it. She's one of my favorite classic actresses. That's when Hollywood had style and talent. She was a beautiful woman and I could only dream of being able to dance as she use to. I could go on and on about Ginger Rogers.
She had a very unusual childhood. She was born in Independence, Missouri, her father was an electric engineer from Scotland. Her mother Welsh. Her parents separated when she was still an infant and her mother took her to live with her grandparents in Kansas City. Her father tried to kidnap her twice but she eventually stayed with her grandparents. Her mother left her in Kansas City to pursue a writing career in Hollywood writing movie scripts.
When Ginger was only 9 years old her mother returned from Hollywood and married a man by the name of John Logan Rogers. They moved to Ft. Worth, Texas. She wanted to become a school teacher but got involved in theatre with her mother's persuasion.
Rogers got her start when a traveling vaudeville act came to Ft. Worth and needed a quick stand-in. She began touring after a wining a dance contest which led her to The Craterian theatre in Medford, Oregon. Now called the The Craterian Ginger Rogers Theatre.
Ginger Rogers had a brief marriage at the young age of 17. She and her dancing husband, Jack Culpepper, had an act called, "Ginger and Pepper" but was short lived as their marriage. She moved to New York City where she got involved in Broadway with help from her mother. She got her break when she starred in Top Speed, which opened on Christmas Day in 1929.
Within two weeks after appearing in Top Speed she was asked to appear in another Broadway show called Girl Crazy. Girl Crazy is where she was discovered by Paramount Pictures. She signed a seven year contract with Paramount in 1930 (at the age of 19). From there on she danced her way into the hearts of those who love her and her movies.