Today's Birthday 7/11

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Broadway Legend
Broadway Legend
Today's Birthday 7/11#1
Posted: 7/10/08 at 11:33pm
Georgiana Drew Barrymore – 07/11/1854 - circa 1893 performer, daughter of John Drew, wife of Maurice Barrymore, mother of Ethel, John & Lionel

Howard Estabrook 07/11/1884 - Jul 16, 1978 performer, dir. prod. – J. Kern’s MISS INFORMATION (Irene Bordoni); LITTLE WOMEN (Alice Bradey as Meg); won an Oscar for 1931 Cimarron w/Irene Dunn & Richard Dix; the very entertaining film HEAVENLY DAYS w/Fibber McGee and Molly, Don Douglas, Barbara Hale, Eugene Pallette)

Thomas Mitchell 07/11/1892 - Dec 17, 1962 performer, prod. writer, dir. – 1 of the great character actors – replacement in orig prod. DEATH OF A SALESMAN; HAZEL FLAGG; great films like GONE W/THE WIND; MR. SMITH GOES TO WASH.; STAGECOACH; IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE

Yul Brynner 07/11/1915 - Oct 10, 1985 performer, dir.; Taidje Khan [Pseudonym], Yul Bryner [Birthname]; brother of Vera Brynerl husband of Virginia Gilmore (1944 - 1960) divorced – 1941 12th NIGHT (w/Hurd Hatfield, dir/prod Michael Chekov); LUTE SONG; KING & I; HOME SWEET HOMER (mus. Mitch Leigh (Joan Diener, Rus Thacker, Martin Vidnovic (Laura Benanti’s pop); tv's & film’s ANASTASIA; MAGNIFICENT 7, What's My Line (I was surprised to learn from a recent doc. on YB that he dir'd a lot of tv!); and a short-lived, non-musical 1970's sitcom called "Anna and the King."

Brett Somers 07/11/1924 - 9/15/2007 performer; Wife of Jack Klugman (1953 - 1974) separated - Maybe Tuesday

Peter Brandon 07/11/1926 performer – orig MAN FOR ALL SEASONS (Albert Dekker, Leo McKern; George Rose, Paul Scofield); 1982 MEDEA (Zoe Caldwell, Judith Anderson, dir. Robert Whitehead)

Tab Hunter (Arthur Gelien [Birthname]) 07/11/1931 perfomer; partner of Alan Glaser (? - present), Anthony Perkins (? - ?) – THE MILK TRAIN DOESN’T STOP HERE ANYMORE; film’s DAMN YANKEES

Peter Shawn 07/11/1942 performer – FRANK MERRIWELL (w/Walter Bobbie); DOONESBURY; SID CEASAR & CO.

Jack Wrangler (John Robert Stillman) 07/11/1946; attended Northwestern University; son of dir. Robert Stillman (asst. dir.); In 1992 he was the recipient of the Backstage Bistro Award for Outstanding Director; married to Margaret Whiting 1994 – DREAM; tv's & adult film's The Faith of Our Children; Boots & Saddles; Orange Hanky Left

Bruce McGill 07/11/1950 performer – 1975 HAMLET (w/Jane Alexander, Mandy Patinkin, Sam Waterston as Hamlet); tv's & film's Recount; CSI; Law & Order; The Legend of Bagger Vance; Indiana Jones and the Infernal Machine; MacGyver; My Cousin Vinny

Stephen Lang 07/11/1952 performer, writer – 1992 HAMLET (w/Kathleen Widdoes, Elizabeth McGovern & SL as Hamlet); 1984 DEATH OF A SALESMAN (Dustin Hoffman, Louis Zorich, John Malkovich, Linda Kozlowski); 1975 HAMLET (see above); Beyond Glory


1998 After playing 12 previews and 240 regular performances in William Luce's Broadway bio of John Barrymore at the Music Box Theatre, actor Christopher Plummer will kick off an eight-city tour of Barrymore tonight. The Broadway production closed Nov. 2, 1997, but Plummer took some time off to rest from the role which won him the 1997 Best Actor Tony Award, as well as a Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle Award.

2001 A Thousand Clowns with Tom Selleck, Robert LuPone

2002 Robin Williams: Live on Broadway

2005 Primo with the fabulous Antony Sher


1937 Composer George Gershwin, half of the songwriting team of George and Ira Gershwin, dies today of a brain tumor at Cedars of Lebanon Hospital in Los Angeles. Along with his lyricist brother, Gershwin wrote the musical masterpiece Porgy and Bess, as well as such Broadway and pop standards as "Fascinating Rhythm" and "Someone to Watch Over Me." Also the composer of the popular concert piece "Rhapsody in Blue," Gershwin was only 38 years old at the time of his death.

1989 Sir Laurence Olivier dies today. The celebrated actor of stage and film was 82 years old. Olivier appeared on Broadway and in the West End in a large array of roles, ranging from Shakespearean tragic heros Hamlet and Caesar to lighter fare like No Time For Comedy. As a stage director, Olivier staged the London bow of A Streetcar Named Desire, starring his wife, Vivien Leigh. Film credits include his Academy Award-winning version of "Hamlet," which Olivier also directed, and "Clash of the Titans."

(sources: IBDB, IMDB, NYT On This Day, &’s Those Were The Days,