The red-letter anniversaries are coming thick and fast here in the Parallel Julieverse. No sooner have we finished toasting the 50th Anniversary of Thoroughly Modern Millie, than it’s time to charge the glasses for another milestone in the annals of Julie-history: the Diamond Jubilee of Cinderella. The celebrated tele-musical premiered 60 years ago on 31 March 1957.
It would be no exaggeration to call Cinderella a major cultural event of the late-1950s. The first television musical created by legendary composer-lyricist team Rodgers and Hammerstein, the show was seen by a record audience of over 100 million viewers, enough, it was pointed out, “to fill a Broadway theatre seven days a week for 165 years” (Messing, 61). Even today, Cinderalla remains one of the most widely seen programs in television history (Hischak, 152).
Julie was, at the time, riding high on the success of another Cinderella musical, My Fair Lady so she was the perfect fit to play the fairytale princess. As these production stills attest, she never looked lovelier and the critics were enraptured.
“Perhaps it’s the unassuming simplicity of Mis Andrews, or the crystal clear articulation, or yet again the perfect pitch, that transforms her performance (as in “My Fair Lady”) to the definitive characterization. No two ways about it, she was Cinderella” (Variety, 42).
“Miss Andrews was Miss Andrews, sweet, beautiful and lyrical. Her only minor problem was that she was fully as beautiful behind the broom and under the tiara” (Gould, 49).
“As Cinderella, Julie Andrews was the personification of innocence. Her face, her style, her talent added up to that rare quality that makes a performer a star” (Torre, 5).
So happy anniversary, Cinderella…thank you for sixty years of fol-de-rol and fiddle-dee-dee enchantment!
Gould, Jack. “TV: Broadway Musical.” The New York Times. 1 April 1957: 49.
Hischak, Thomas S. “Cinderella.” The Oxford Companion to the American Musical: Theatre, Film, and Television. New York: Oxford University Press, 2008.
Messing, Harold. CBS Television Production of ‘Cinderella‘. (Unpublished Masters thesis). Stanford University, 1957.
“Review: Cinderella.” Variety. 3 April 1957: 42.
Torre, Martha. “Cinderella.” The New York Herald Tribune. 1 April 1957: 5.
“I like to take a long time over things, and I believe that it’s the time spent away from the work that allows me to do the work itself. If you’re lurching from from one film set or one theater to the other, I’m not sure what your resources would be as a human being.”
60 years ago.. the Mexican IDOL, Pedro Infante die in a
Pedro Infante Cruz (18 November 1917 – 15 April 1957), better known as Pedro Infante, was a Mexican actor and singer. Hailed as one of the greatest actors of the Golden Age of Mexican cinema, he is considered an idol of the Latin American people, together with Jorge Negrete and Javier Solís, who were styled as the Tres Gallos Mexicanos (the Three Mexican Roosters).
Born Lucila Godoy y Alcayaga, she was a Chilean poet-diplomat, educator and humanist. In 1945 she became the first Latin American author to receive a Nobel Prize in Literature, “for her lyric poetry which, inspired by powerful emotions, has made her name a symbol of the idealistic aspirations of the entire Latin American world”. Some central themes in her poems are nature, betrayal, love, a mother’s love, sorrow and recovery, travel, and Latin American identity as formed from a mixture of Native American and European influences. Her portrait also appears on the 5,000 Chilean peso bank note. (Wikipedia)
From our stacks: 1. Frontispiece from Gabriela Mistral (1889 - 1957). Washington, D. C.: Pan American Union, 1958. 2. Cover from Antología. Gabriela Mistral. (3.a Edición) Santiago de Chile: Zig-Zag, 1953. 3.Frontispiece from Selected Poems of Gabriela Mistral. Translated and Edited by Doris Dana. Woodcuts by Antonio Frasconi. Published for the Library of Congress By the Johns Hopkins Press / Baltimore, 1971. 4. Front matter detail from Ternura. Gabriela Mistral. Buenos Aires - México: Espasa Calpe Argentina, S. A., 1945.