Wednesday, February 16, 2011


Mitzi Gaynor is a much loved musical film, theatre and television performer. She has beautifully acted and danced in a number of film musical classics including my favourites of "There's No Business Like Show Business" in 1954 with Ethel Merman and Marilyn Monroe.

Another one of her film classics is "Les Girls" in which she appeared in 1957 at MGM studios. Directed by George Cukor and starring Gene Kelly and Kay Kendall, it remains up there as one of the great MGM musicals.

This costume appears in Les Girls as worn by Mitzi Gaynor. It is a peach coloured dance leotard with intricate beading and design to the majority of the costume. The costumes for the film was designed by Orry-Kelly.

This is a close up of the design to the bodice.

The costume can be seen not only on screen but in any number of promotional photos as you can see below.

Here is another close up of the design work on the costume.

The costume also appears on the orignal poster art for the film.

To give you an idea of size, her measurements in 1956 around the time of filming "Les Girls" was 36C-21 1/2-36 1/2. The following photos give you clear understanding of the "waists" these performers had!

The costume design is worn by all three leads inluding Kay Kendall and Tania Elg as part of a dance number in the film with Gene Kelly. It's a wonderful dance cosutme and so reminicent of the magic of the MGM musical film and the glamour of 1950's Hollywood.

Gaynor will of course be rememebered best for role as Ensign Nellie Forbush in the film version of Rodgers and Hammerstein's "South Pacific" and for her performance she was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for best actress.

Following her career as a film performer, she went on to perform on stage in a number of concert appearances as well as a series of much loved televsion specials so much so that they gained her a total of 16 Emmy nominations.

This great lady even today continues to tour with her one one-woman show titled "Razzle Dazzle: My Life Behind the Sequins".

1 comment:

  1. Mitzi Gaynor, in "South Pacific", started my appreciation for legs like hers.