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Dolores Gray Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (2) | Mini Bio (1) | Spouse (1) | Trivia (10) | Personal Quotes (1)

Overview (2)

Date of Birth 7 June 1924Chicago, Illinois, USA
Date of Death 26 June 2002Manhattan, New York City, New York, USA  (heart attack)

Mini Bio (1)

Dabbling in practically every facet of the business during her over six-decade career -- nightclubs, cabaret, radio, recordings, TV, film and Broadway -- sultry, opulent, hard-looking singing star Dolores Gray, distinctive for her sharp, somewhat equine features, lived the high life for most of her time on earth. Born in Chicago in 1924, she began singing in Hollywood supper clubs at age 14 and eventually was discovered by Rudy Vallee, who made her a name on his radio show. From there the larger-than-life talent took to the stage, debuting on Broadway in 1944. In 1947, she gussied up London's post-war theater district when she starred as Annie Oakley in "Annie Get Your Gun." Lucky for her, Ethel Merman refused the tour and Dolores became the toast of the West End for over two years. She also attracted tabloid attention with her extravagant life style, outlandish clothes and 'Auntie Mame'-like joie de vivre. Broadway musicals beckoned following her success abroad and the dusky alto returned to New York, earning raves in the short-lived "Carnival in Flanders" with John Raitt, which won her the Tony award, and "Destry Rides Again" co-starring pre-TV star Andy Griffith, which earned her a Tony nomination. MGM wanted in on the action and signed her. Dolores managed a few scene-grabbing second leads in It's Always Fair Weather (1955) starring Gene Kelly, Kismet (1955) with Howard Keel and Ann Blyth, The Opposite Sex (1956), starring June Allyson and Joan Collins, which was a somewhat misguided musical version of the classic comedy "The Women," and the chic non-musical Designing Woman (1957) with Gregory Peck and Lauren Bacall. And then it was over for Dolores in movies. Hit by the decline of the musical film, she, trooper that she was, found work on TV variety, recorded for Capitol Records and remained a top-of-the-line cabaret act for decades to come. Despite her somewhat outré reputation, Dolores married only once -- to California businessman and race horse owner Andrew Crevolin in 1967. Although the marriage lasted approximately 9 years. they never divorced. In fact, the couple never even formally separated as she was a devout Catholic. She and Andrew would remain close friends until his death in 1992. Dolores passed away a decade later in her Manhattan apartment of a heart attack at age 78 in 2002.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Gary Brumburgh / gr-home@pacbell.net

Spouse (1)

Andrew Joseph Crevolin (24 September 1966 - 26 March 1992) (his death)

Trivia (10)

Dolores Gray sang Marilyn Monroe's parts on the Decca Records soundtrack release of There's No Business Like Show Business (1954). Monroe's recorded voice was under contract with RCA Victor who would not issue a release, so Gray's voice was used.
Understudy to Ethel Merman on Broadway.
Performed all her life with a bullet lodged in her left lung, an inoperable wound suffered as a child accidentally caught in a gang crossfire in Chiacgo.
She stayed with "Annie Get Your Gun" for nearly three years in London and played to over 2.5 million people, including the Royal Family.
Her signature song was "Here's That Rainy Day", which she introduced on Broadway in her Tony-winning "Carnival of Flanders" in 1954.
Won Broadway's 1954 Tony Award as Best Actress (Musical) for "Carnival in Flanders." She was also nominated in the same category in 1960 for "Destry Rides Again."
During a 1959 performance of the Broadway musical "Destry Rides Again", in which Gray starred opposite Andy Griffith, a fire broke out backstage at the Imperial Theater. Although it was put out within a few minutes time, without any major damage, just enough smoke drifted toward the stage that there could have been a panic had not Griffith and Gray continued on with the scene as though nothing was happening. For their bravery, they were rewarded by the audience that night with a standing ovation and by the New York City Fire Comissioner with citations for heroism.
Although the role of "Frenchy" in 1959's "Destry Rides Again" was one of Gray's greatest successes on Broadway, it was an experience she always recalled with mixed emotions. Always a total professional, she was constantly at odds with perfectionist director/choreographer Michael Kidd. This tumultuous relationship reached its peak when an angry Kidd called Gray a "slut" in front of the entire company. Gray, a life-long devout Catholic, slapped his face. When asked to step in, producer David Merrick said, "you couldn't buy this kind of publicity. Let them fight it out". As to co-star Andy Griffith, the most Gray would say was that he wasn't very pleasant to her.
She was a staunch Republican who gave much of her time and money towards various conservative political causes. She attended several Republican National Conventions, galas, and fund-raisers. She was active in the campaigns of Thomas E. Dewey, Dwight D. Eisenhower, Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, and George W. Bush.
Upon her death, she was cremated and her ashes are in the possession of her stepdaughter Joanne Kildare who lives in Alamo, California.

Personal Quotes (1)

My mother once said to me, 'It's not a very happy life unless you make it very big.'

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