The 1920's and 30's career of singer Helen Morgan is followed from her early days singing outdoors in a carnival, through her speak-easy and chorus-girl days, to her stardom on Broadway in Ziegfeld's "Show Boat". Her involvement with Larry Maddux, a gin-runner and con-man, and Russell Wade, a prominent, married New York lawyer, and her decline thanks to these failed romances and alcohol are punctuated by performances of many of the songs she made famous. Written by
Ron Kerrigan <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Her Real Story From Real Life!
Did You Know?
Although Ann Blyth
had done her own singing in her other movie musicals, her trained soprano voice was judged too operatic for the role of Helen Morgan
, and pop singer Gogi Grant
's voice was dubbed in. Ironically, the real Helen Morgan's light soprano voice was actually closer to Blyth's in quality than it was to Grant's. Ann Blyth
revealed to writer-producer John Fricke
that studio head Jack L. Warner
had insisted on an intense, belting, Judy Garland
-type sound for the film's Morgan. See more
Paul Newman's character, Larry Maddux, repeatedly refers to Florenz Ziegfeld as "Ziegfield." All the other characters say Ziegfeld's name correctly. See more
Do yourself a favor. Hire the kid.
I hope your hooch is better than your suggestion, Larry. What's the canary to you.
Nuthin'. I'm just a music lover. Besides, I don't go for that sad stuff she sings.
Referenced in Valley of the Dolls
Why Was I Born?
Music by Jerome Kern
Lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II
Performed by Ann Blyth
(dubbed by Gogi Grant
) at the Helen Morgan Club
Also played on the radio at the bar
Originally from the musical "Sweet Adeline" See more