Jane Powell, ‘Seven Brides for Seven Brothers’ and ‘Royal Wedding’ star, dead at 92

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Actress MGM. was known for starring in several successful film musicals for

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Actress Jane Powell, who appeared in several film musicals, has died at the age of 92.

According to longtime friend Susan Grander, Powell died of natural causes Thursday at her Wilton, Conn., home.

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Her best-known films in the 1940s and 50s were the MGM musicals “Royal Wedding” and “Seven Brides for Seven Brothers”. She was known for her beautiful voice, which often surprised audiences considering her short stature and tendency to cast in soft roles.

According to Diversity, he easily grabbed a contract with MGM in 1943, starring for the first time in their 1944 musical “Song of the Open Road”. She took the name of the character she played – Jane Powell, a child actor who runs away – as her own.

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Powell would star alongside some of Hollywood’s most notable stars and musicians at the time, including Walter Pidgeon, Jose Iturbi, Javier Cugat, Janet McDonald, Wallace Berry, Carmen Miranda, and Elizabeth Taylor.

Many of their projects melted together in fans’ minds until “The Royal Wedding”, in which co-star Fred Astaire famously dances on the walls and ceiling of a room, and has Powell play one half of the siblings’ act. have seen. London in 1947. The story was similar to that of Astaire and his own sister, Adele.

Several years later, in 1954, she starred in Stanley Donnan’s Oscar-nominated “Seven Brides for Seven Brothers” and earned positive reviews for her performance.

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Later that year, she starred in another of Donnan’s film, “Athena,” a wild story about a family of weight-lifting vegetarians. She saw herself playing a woman involved in a star-crossed romance with a politician.

His third film of the same year was also directed by Donnan: “Deep in my Heart.”

In 1956, Powell’s recording of “True Love” did well on the Billboard charts, peaking at number 15. She also performed “I’ll Never Stop Loving You” at the Oscars that same year.

In his late ’50s, Powell saw his career decline somewhat, falling out of the youth roles he had played so famously in earlier years. Many of his films at that time were unsuccessful, although some met with moderate success.

She transitioned to television around the same time, appearing in compilations such as “Goodyear Theatre” and variety shows such as “The Red Skelton Hour”. She famously appeared in the made-for-TV version of “Meet Me in St. Louis”, starring Esther Smith, a role originally popularized by Judy Garland.

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She would also tour with popular musicals such as “Unsinkable Molly Brown,” “The Sound of Music,” “Oklahoma!,” “My Fair Lady,” “Carousel,” “Meet Me in St. Louis.” “Peter Pan.” In 1973, she appeared in the musical “Irene” on Broadway.

She guest-starred on several famous television shows in the ’80s such as “Fantasy Island,” “The Love Boat,” “Murder, She Wrote” and “Growing Pains.”

His final on-screen performance came during the 2002 episode of “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit”, although he continued to make special appearances in concerts, performing with Pink Martini at the Hollywood Bowl in 2010, according to Variety. .

The Portland-born artist got her big break during her 1943 vacation in Hollywood, during which she won the Janet Gaynor radio talent contest “Hollywood Showcase: Stars Over Hollywood,” which led to her MGM contract.

The star was married five times, including skater Gearhart “Gearry” Anthony Stephen. Taylor acted as a bridesmaid at the wedding. She married her fifth and final husband, former child star Dickie Moore, in 1988 – who passed away in 2015.

She is survived by her children, Gary Anthony Stephen III, Susan Stephen and Lindsay Cavalli, as well as two granddaughters, Skye Cavalli and Tia Cavalli, per Variety.


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