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Virginia Gibson (born Virginia Gorski; April 9, 1925 – April 25, 2013) was an American dancer, singer and actress of film, television and musical theatre.[1]

Virginia Gibson
Virginia Gibson 1967.JPG
Gibson in 1967
Born
Virginia Gorski

(1925-04-09)April 9, 1925
DiedApril 25, 2013(2013-04-25) (aged 88)
OccupationActress, Dancer, Singer
Years active1943–1971

Early yearsEdit

Of Polish and Irish lineage,[2] Gibson was the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John S. Gorski, Gibson graduated from St. Alphonsus Parochial School.[3]

CareerEdit

Gibson, who was signed by Warner Bros. in 1950[4] and made her film debut in Tea for Two (1950),[5] started her career in musicals in her hometown of St. Louis, Missouri. In 1937, she was one of 35 girls chosen for ballet in St. Louis Opera Company productions.[6] She danced in the chorus of a production of The Student Prince there in 1940,[7] and in 1943 she was part of the dancing chorus of the summer season of the Muny Opera.[8] In the fall of 1943, she was one of three dancers from that group to sign contracts to perform in Roll Up Your Sleeves on Broadway.[9] She used her birth name on Broadway through 1949.[10] In 1947, she returned to perform at Muny Opera, this time as the star of No, No, Nanette.[3]

Billed as a starlet, she was part of the group of Hollywood actors who traveled across the country in 1951-1952 promoting the 50th Anniversary of movie theaters. With Roscoe Ates and Charles Starrett she toured eastern Oklahoma greeting the public. In Hollywood she played supporting or leading roles in a number of Warner Brothers musicals. Her most famous film role was Liza in Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (1954).[11] Reflecting on Warners' non-renewal of her option, Gibson said, "There are just so many musicals, and they had Doris Day. And who can shine in comparison to her vivacity?"[4]

 
Vincent Gardenia, Gibson, and Val Avery in "Sound of Violence", a 1959 episode of the anthology series Armstrong Circle Theatre

On television, Gibson was a regular on Captain Billy's Showboat (1948).[12] She also starred in So This Is Hollywood (1955).[12]:987 She was a regular performer on The Johnny Carson Show (1955–56),[12]:540 an earlier Carson series, not to be confused with The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson. In 1956 she returned to Broadway to play Ethel Merman's daughter in the musical Happy Hunting. She then became one of the stars of Your Hit Parade,[12]:1209 one of the most popular TV shows of the 1950s, for one season.[citation needed] She had a three-month stint as a jazz singer on the TV version of Young Doctor Malone. From 1962 to 1971 she co-hosted, with Frank Buxton[2] (and later, Bill Owen),[citation needed] the ABC-TV children's documentary program Discovery.[2]

Gibson also appeared in commercials for a cake mix, cameras, a candy bar, a detergent, a hair spray, paper towels, and a soap.[13]

When her performing career ended she spent many years[timeframe?] teaching at the HB Studio in New York.[10]

DeathEdit

On April 25, 2013, Gibson died in Newtown, Pennsylvania,[14] at the age of 88.

AwardsEdit

In 1957 she was nominated for a Tony Award Best Featured Actress in a Musical, for her portrayal of Beth Livingstone in Happy Hunting.[15]

Theatrical AppearancesEdit

FilmographyEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "VIRGINIA GIBSON Obituary". Legacy.com. Retrieved 2013-05-02. http://ibdb.com/person.php?id=90603
  2. ^ a b c Harris, Harry (July 7, 1963). "Virginia Gibson Profits From 'Sweet Young Thing' Image". The Philadelphia Inquirer. Pennsylvania, Philadelphia. p. Programs and Personalities p 2. Retrieved 22 February 2019 – via Newspapers.com.
  3. ^ a b "Chorus Girl In '43 Coming Back As Muny Opera Star". The St. Louis Star and Times. Missouri, St. Louis. May 13, 1947. p. 12. Retrieved 22 February 2019 – via Newspapers.com.
  4. ^ a b Standish, Myles (July 27, 1958). "Pert Gibson Girl -- Virgniia, That Is". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Missouri, St. Louis. p. 4 G. Retrieved 22 February 2019 – via Newspapers.com.
  5. ^ Kimbrough, Mary (January 8, 1952). "A Fan Letter From Joan Crawford". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Missouri, St. Louis. p. 3 C. Retrieved 22 February 2019 – via Newspapers.com.
  6. ^ "35 Ballet Girls Chosen for St. Louis Operas". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Missouri, St. Louis. October 11, 1937. p. 21. Retrieved 22 February 2019 – via Newspapers.com.
  7. ^ "Dancing Chorus in 'The Student Prince'". The St. Louis Star and Times. Missouri, St. Louis. October 21, 1940. p. 15. Retrieved 22 February 2019 – via Newspapers.com.
  8. ^ "These Complete the Dancing Chorus". The St. Louis Star and Times. Missouri, St. Louis. May 12, 1943. p. 17. Retrieved 22 February 2019 – via Newspapers.com.
  9. ^ "Kid Regan's Column". The St. Louis Star and Times. Missouri, St. Louis. October 13, 1943. p. 19. Retrieved 22 February 2019 – via Newspapers.com.
  10. ^ a b "Virginia Gibson". Internet Broadway Database. The Broadway League. Archived from the original on 22 February 2019. Retrieved 22 February 2019.
  11. ^ "Virginia Gibson: Singer, actress and dancer who starred in hit". The Independent. 2013-05-20. Retrieved 2019-02-24.
  12. ^ a b c d Terrace, Vincent (2011). Encyclopedia of Television Shows, 1925 through 2010 (2nd ed.). Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland & Company, Inc., Publishers. p. 159. ISBN 978-0-7864-6477-7.
  13. ^ "Virginia Gibson's Image". The Philadelphia Inquirer. Pennsylvania, Philadelphia. July 7, 1963. p. Programs and Personalities p 4. Retrieved 22 February 2019 – via Newspapers.com.
  14. ^ Lentz, Harris M., III (2014). Obituaries in the Performing Arts, 2013. McFarland. p. 133. ISBN 9780786476657. Retrieved 22 February 2019.
  15. ^ "("Virginia Gibson" search results)". Tony Awards. American Theatre Wing. Archived from the original on 22 February 2019. Retrieved 22 February 2019.

External linksEdit