Mitzi Gaynor

Performer


The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation Presents

02:26

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About
About this interview

In her two-hour-plus Archive interview, performer Mitzi Gaynor talks about her early interest in dance and music. She recalls joining the Los Angeles Civic Light Opera Company, getting signed by 20th Century Fox, and appearing in several hit films, including "My Blue Heaven" with Betty Grable, "Anything Goes" with Bing Crosby, and "Les Girls" with Gene Kelly. Gaynor also describes how she was cast as "Nellie Forbush" in the classic movie musical, "South Pacific." She recounts her memorable performances on several Academy Award show broadcasts, including singing "Georgy Girl" on The 1967 Academy Awards - the most heralded performance on an Oscar broadcast. She then details her many television specials, commenting on choreographers Peter Gennaro and Tony Charmoli, costume designer Bob Mackie and her husband/producer Jack Bean. She talks of her recent Emmy-winning PBS special, <i>Mitzi Gaynor: Razzle Dazzle! The Special Years</i> and speaks fondly of her current managers, Rene Reyes and Shane Rosamonda. She describes her current projects, what it's like to still be on tour and how show business and television have changed over the years. John Dalton conducted the interview on October 9, 2012 in Beverly Hills, CA.

"Show business is my life, darling. Don't you understand?"

Highlights
Mitzi Gaynor on "South Pacific"
04:00
Mitzi Gaynor on appearing on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1964, the same night The Beatles were on
05:47
Mitzi Gaynor on singing "Georgy Girl" on The 1967 Academy Awards - the most heralded performance on an Oscar broadcast
05:26
Mitzi Gaynor on performing "I Can Cook, Too" on her television special Mitzi ... A Tribute to an American Housewife
02:26
Mitzi Gaynor on becoming a journalist for The Hollywood Reporter
01:22
Full Interview

Chapter 1

On her early years and influences; on her interest in dance and music; on joining the Los Angeles Civic Light Opera Company
10:23
On getting signed by 20th Century Fox; on the film "My Blue Heaven" with Betty Grable
05:06
On her first time on television and her name change; on the 1954 Academy Awards; on co-starring with Ethel Merman and Marilyn Monroe in "There's No Business Like Show Business"
06:52
On her husband, Jack Bean; on working with Bing Crosby in "Anything Goes", with Gene Kelly in "Les Girls" and with Frank Sinatra on his variety show
06:36
On "South Pacific"; on appearing on The Jack Benny Hour; on singing "There's No Business Like Show Business" on the 1961 Academy Awards
06:59
On her show in Las Vegas; on appearing on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1964, the same night The Beatles were on
12:32
On appearing on The Danny Thomas Show and meeting costume designers Bob Mackie and Ray Aghayan; on appearing on the 1967 Christmas episode of The Kraft Music Hall
03:51
On singing "Georgy Girl" on The 1967 Academy Awards - the most heralded performance on an Oscar broadcast
06:34

Chapter 2

On her first television special, Mitzi, in 1968; on her character, "The Kid" and working with directors, choreographers, and costume designer Bob Mackie
20:15
On not doing a television series, only specials; on her yearly television specials
24:50
On traveling for performances; on her fans' favorite sketches; on why her television specials ended
03:27
On appearing on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson; on appearing in the stage version of "Anything Goes"; on becoming a journalist for The Hollywood Reporter; on her Emmy-winning PBS special, Mitzi Gaynor: Razzle Dazzle! The Special Years and her managers
06:30

Chapter 3

On her current projects and touring; on how show business and television have changed over the years
04:03
On celebrity, career highlights, advice to aspiring performers, and how she'd like to be remembered
05:10
Shows

Academy Awards, The

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Mitzi Gaynor on performing with Donald O'Connor on the 1954 Academy Awards
01:11
Mitzi Gaynor on singing "There's No Business Like Show Business" on the 1961 Academy Awards
00:59
Mitzi Gaynor on singing "Georgy Girl" on The 1967 Academy Awards - the most heralded performance on an Oscar broadcast
05:26
Mitzi Gaynor on how appearing on The Academy Awards changed over the years
01:08

Bob Hope Specials

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Mitzi Gaynor on appearing on a Bob Hope Special the night her own special aired
01:01

Danny Thomas Show, The aka Make Room for Daddy

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Mitzi Gaynor on appearing on The Danny Thomas Show and meeting Bob Mackie
02:14

Ed Sullivan Show, The aka Toast of the Town

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Mitzi Gaynor on appearing on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1964, the same night The Beatles were on
06:52
Mitzi Gaynor on later appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show
00:58

Jack Benny Hour, The

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Mitzi Gaynor on appearing on The Jack Benny Hour
01:18

Kraft Music Hall, The

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Mitzi Gaynor on appearing on the 1967 Christmas episode of The Kraft Music Hall
01:37

Mitzi Gaynor Specials

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Mitzi Gaynor on her first television special, Mitzi, in 1968
18:36
Mitzi Gaynor on singing the ballad "Blue" on her first television special
01:48
Mitzi Gaynor on her character, "The Kid"
01:37
Mitzi Gaynor on her persona on her television specials, selecting themes for her specials, and rehearsal
03:14
Mitzi Gaynor on producer/director Bob Henry
01:44
Mitzi Gaynor on her television special, Mitzi's 2nd Special
02:02
Mitzi Gaynor on her television special, Mitzi ... The First Time
01:44
Mitzi Gaynor on Mitzi ... A Tribute to an American Housewife with choreographer Tony Charmoli
05:10
Mitzi Gaynor on the audiences of her television specials
00:44
Mitzi Gaynor on her television special, Mitzi and a Hundred Guys
03:36
Mitzi Gaynor on her television special, Mitzi... Roarin' in the '20s
01:30
Mitzi Gaynor on her television special, Mitzi Zings Into Spring
00:52
Mitzi Gaynor on censor concerns over her television special, Mitzi's 2nd Special
01:28
Mitzi Gaynor on her final television special, Mitzi... What's Hot, What's Not and dealing with censors
01:32
Mitzi Gaynor on how her specials evolved over the years and the atmosphere and production on her specials
02:52
Mitzi Gaynor on dance moves that work for television and favorite sketches from her specials
02:07
Mitzi Gaynor on why her television specials ended
01:06

Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In

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Mitzi Gaynor on appearing on Rowan and Martin's Laugh-In the night her own special aired
00:22

Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, The

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Mitzi Gaynor on appearing on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson
01:01
Topics

Censorship / Standards & Practices

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Mitzi Gaynor on her final television special, Mitzi... What's Hot, What's Not and dealing with censors
01:32

Fame & Celebrity

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Mitzi Gaynor on how celebrity has affected her
01:07

Memorable Moments on Television

View Topic
Mitzi Gaynor on appearing on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1964, the same night The Beatles were on
06:52
Mitzi Gaynor on singing "Georgy Girl" on The 1967 Academy Awards - the most heralded performance on an Oscar broadcast
05:26
Mitzi Gaynor on performing "I Can Cook, Too" on her television special Mitzi ... A Tribute to an American Housewife
02:26

Pop Culture

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Mitzi Gaynor on appearing on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1964, the same night The Beatles were on
06:52

Rock 'n' Roll on TV (1950s & '60s)

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Mitzi Gaynor on appearing on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1964, the same night The Beatles were on
06:52

Television Industry

View Topic
Mitzi Gaynor on her final television special, Mitzi... What's Hot, What's Not and dealing with censors
01:32
Mitzi Gaynor on how show business and television have changed over the years
01:36
Mitzi Gaynor on how celebrity has affected her
01:07
Professions

Actress

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Mitzi Gaynor on joining the Los Angeles Civic Light Opera Company and her first show
00:33

Performers

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Mitzi Gaynor on joining the Los Angeles Civic Light Opera Company and her first show
00:33
Mitzi Gaynor on advice to aspiring television performers
00:37
Genres

Awards Shows

View Genre
Mitzi Gaynor on performing with Donald O'Connor on the 1954 Academy Awards
01:11
Mitzi Gaynor on singing "There's No Business Like Show Business" on the 1961 Academy Awards
00:59
Mitzi Gaynor on singing "Georgy Girl" on The 1967 Academy Awards - the most heralded performance on an Oscar broadcast
05:26

Music Shows & Variety Shows/Specials

View Genre
Mitzi Gaynor on appearing on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1964, the same night The Beatles were on
06:52
Mitzi Gaynor on her television specials
45:05
People

George Abbott

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Mitzi Gaynor on working with Bing Crosby in "Anything Goes"
01:49

Ray Aghayan

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Mitzi Gaynor on appearing on The Danny Thomas Show and meeting costume designers Bob Mackie and Ray Aghayan
02:14

Beatles, The

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Mitzi Gaynor on appearing on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1964, the same night The Beatles were on
06:52

Jack Benny

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Mitzi Gaynor on appearing on The Jack Benny Hour
01:18

Ken Berry

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Mitzi Gaynor on working with Ken Berry on her television special Mitzi ... The First Time
00:59

Carol Burnett

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Mitzi Gaynor on Bob Mackie's designs for Carol Burnett
00:39

Tony Charmoli

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Mitzi Gaynor on Mitzi: A Tribute to an American Housewife with choreographer Tony Charmoli
02:21
Mitzi Gaynor on performing "I Can Cook, Too" on her television special Mitzi ... A Tribute to an American Housewife
01:23
Mitzi Gaynor on her television special, Mitzi and a Hundred Guys
03:36

Roy Clark

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Mitzi Gaynor on her television special, Mitzi Zings Into Spring
03:52

Bing Crosby

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Mitzi Gaynor on working with Bing Crosby in "Anything Goes"
00:17

Ernest Flatt

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Mitzi Gaynor on Ernie Flatt replacing Tony Charmoli on Your Hit Parade
01:02

Peter Gennaro

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Mitzi Gaynor on working with choreographer Peter Gennaro on her television specials
01:38
Mitzi Gaynor on working with choreographer Peter Gennaro on her television specials; on shooting her dance numbers
02:42

Phil Harris

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Mitzi Gaynor on working with announcer Phil Harris on her first television special
01:19

Bob Henry

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Mitzi Gaynor on producer/director Bob Henry, who directed her first television special
01:44

Bob Hope

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Mitzi Gaynor on show business advice from Bob Hope
01:25
Mitzi Gaynor on Bob Hope hosting The 1967 Academy Awards ceremony on which she sang "Georgy Girl"
02:40
Mitzi Gaynor on dancing with Bob Hope on one of her television specials
00:44

Gene Kelly

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Mitzi Gaynor on working with Gene Kelly in "Les Girls"
01:58

Bob Mackie

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Mitzi Gaynor on appearing on The Danny Thomas Show and meeting costume designers Bob Mackie and Ray Aghayan
02:14
Mitzi Gaynor on working with costume designer Bob Mackie on her television specials
03:17
Mitzi Gaynor on working with costume designer Bob Mackie on her television specials
03:10
Mitzi Gaynor on wearing a see-through Bob Mackie gown on Mitzi's 2nd Special
00:27

Mary Martin

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Mitzi Gaynor on singing the songs for "South Pacific" in the same key as Mary Martin
00:26

Ross Martin

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Mitzi Gaynor on working with Ross Martin on Mitzi's 2nd Special
01:13

Ethel Merman

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Mitzi Gaynor on performing with Ethel Merman in "There's No Business Like Show Business"
00:41

Marilyn Monroe

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Mitzi Gaynor on co-starring with Marilyn Monroe in "There's No Business Like Show Business"
01:41

Donald O'Connor

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Mitzi Gaynor on performing with Donald O'Connor on the 1954 Academy Awards
01:11
Mitzi Gaynor on performing with Donald O'Connor on his television show
00:47

Carl Reiner

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Mitzi Gaynor on dancing and doing comedy sketches with Carl Reiner on her television special, Mitzi... Roarin' in the '20s
00:43

Frank Sinatra

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Mitzi Gaynor on appearing on Frank Sinatra's variety show
01:36

Darryl F. Zanuck

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Mitzi Gaynor on Darryl Zanuck grooming her to become a star
00:27

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