Gwen Verdon (1925–2000)


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Gwen Verdon was born to the theater. Her mother, Gertrude, was a vaudevillian and dancer. Her father, Joseph, was an MGM studio electrician. She had to wear corrective boots as a child to straighten out her legs, which were misshapen by childhood illness. Nonetheless, she first appeared as a tapper on stage at age 6. She got her break in Bob Fosse... See full bio »

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Nominated for 3 Primetime Emmys. Another 2 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

Known For

Cocoon Bess McCarthy
(1985)
(1958)
(1996)
Magnum, P.I. Katherine Peterson
(1985-1988)

Filmography

Hide Hide Show Show Actress (52 credits)
 2000 Bruno
Mrs. Drago
 1999 Walking Across Egypt
Alora
 1997-1999 Walker, Texas Ranger (TV Series)
Maisie Whitman
- Mind Games (1999) ... Maisie Whitman
- Forgotten People (1997) ... Maisie Whitman
 1998 Promised Land (TV Series)
Karen Hatcher
- Undercover Granny (1998) ... Karen Hatcher
 1998 Best Friends for Life (TV Movie)
Edith Cooper
 1997 Touched by an Angel (TV Series)
Lorraine McCully
- Missing in Action (1997) ... Lorraine McCully
 1996 Marvin's Room
Ruth
 1996 In Cold Blood (TV Mini-Series)
Sadie Truitt
- Episode #1.2 (1996) ... Sadie Truitt
- Episode #1.1 (1996) ... Sadie Truitt
 1994 The Cosby Mysteries (TV Series)
Yolanda
- Self Defense (1994) ... Yolanda
- Our Lady of Cement (1994) ... Yolanda
 1994 Oldest Living Confederate Widow Tells All (TV Mini-Series)
Etta Pell, Old Folks Home Resident
 1993 Key West (TV Series)
Sister Grace
- Gimme Shelter (1993) ... Sister Grace
 1993 Homicide: Life on the Street (TV Series)
Jessie Doohen
- Ghost of a Chance (1993) ... Jessie Doohen
 1992 Dream On (TV Series)
Kitty Brewer
- For Peter's Sake (1992) ... Kitty Brewer
 1990 Alice
Alice's Mother
 1989 Dear John (TV Series)
Yvonne
- The Second Time Around (1989) ... Yvonne
 1988 Cocoon: The Return
Bess McCarthy Selwyn
 1986-1988 Webster (TV Series)
Aunt Charlotte
- Take My Cousin, Please (1988) ... Aunt Charlotte
- There Goes the Bride (1986) ... Aunt Charlotte
- Hello, I Must Be Going (1986) ... Aunt Charlotte
 1985-1988 Magnum, P.I. (TV Series)
Katherine Peterson
- Resolutions: Part II (1988) ... Katherine Peterson
- Resolutions: Part I (1988) ... Katherine Peterson
- Infinity and Jelly Doughnuts (1987) ... Katherine Peterson
- Forty (1987) ... Katherine Peterson
- Going Home (1985) ... Katherine Peterson
 1987 Nadine
Vera
 1987 Hotel (TV Series)
Iris Lloyd
- Second Thoughts (1987) ... Iris Lloyd
 1986 All Is Forgiven (TV Series)
Bonita Harrell
- I Can't Say No (1986) ... Bonita Harrell
 1986 The Equalizer (TV Series)
Kelly Sterling
- Unnatural Causes (1986) ... Kelly Sterling
 1985 Kids Incorporated (TV Series)
Ruth
 1985 Cocoon
Bess McCarthy
 1985 Trapper John, M.D. (TV Series)
Ms. Taylor
- All the King's Horses... (1985) ... Ms. Taylor
 1984 The Cotton Club
Tish Dwyer
 1984 Gimme a Break! (TV Series)
Lily
- The Center (1984) ... Lily
 1984 The Jerk, Too (TV Movie)
Bag Lady (uncredited)
 1983 Legs (TV Movie)
Maureen Comly
 1982 Fame (TV Series)
Melinda MacNeil
- Come One, Come All (1982) ... Melinda MacNeil
 1981 M*A*S*H (TV Series)
Brandy Doyle
- That's Show Biz (1981) ... Brandy Doyle
 1978 Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band
Our Guests at Heartland
 1973 Deadly Visitor (TV Movie)
 1972 Love, American Style (TV Series)
Estelle Mayberry (segment "Love and the New Act")
 1970 NET Playhouse (TV Series) (segment "Actor's Choice")
- Foul!/Actor's Choice (1970) ... (segment "Actor's Choice")
 1970 All My Children (TV Series)
Judith Kingsley Sawyer (1982)
 1958 Damn Yankees
Lola
 1955 Gentlemen Marry Brunettes
Specialty Dancer (uncredited)
 1954 Once Upon an Eastertime (TV Movie)
Cathy
 1954 Goodyear Playhouse (TV Series)
Shirley Kochendorfer
- Native Dancer (1954) ... Shirley Kochendorfer
 1953 The Farmer Takes a Wife
Abigail (uncredited)
 1953 The I Don't Care Girl
Specialty Dancer - 'Beale Street Blues' (uncredited)
 1953 The Mississippi Gambler
Voodoo Dancer (uncredited)
 1952 The Merry Widow
Specialty Can-Can Dancer (uncredited)
 1952 Dreamboat
Girl in Television Commercial (uncredited)
 1951 Meet Me After the Show
Gwen Verdon / Sappho, Dancer in No Talent Joe (uncredited)
 1951 David and Bathsheba
Specialty Dancer (uncredited)
 1951 On the Riviera
Specialty Dancer (uncredited)
 1945 Blonde from Brooklyn
Girl in Nightclub (uncredited)
 1943 Hoosier Holiday
Cheerleader (as Gwyneth Verdon)
 1941 The Girl After My Heart (Short)
Ballerina (as Gwen Verdun)
 1936 The King Steps Out
Specialty Ballerina (uncredited)
Show Show Soundtrack (24 credits)
Show Show Miscellaneous Crew (3 credits)
Show Show Art department (1 credit)
Show Show Music department (1 credit)
Show Show Thanks (3 credits)
Show Show Self (58 credits)
Show Show Archive footage (17 credits)

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Personal Details

Other Works:

Gwen originated and immortalized, on the Broadway stage, the roles of some of the most popular musical theatre characters. Between the years of 1952 and 1975, Gwen brought to us: Lola in "Damn Yankees"; Anna Christie in "New Girl In Town"; Essie in "Redhead"; Charity Hope Valentine in "Sweet Charity"; Roxie Hart in "Chicago"; ... See more »

Publicity Listings:

1 Biographical Movie | 1 Interview | 1 Article | 1 Pictorial | See more »

Alternate Names:

Gwyneth Verdon | Gwen Verdun

Height:

5' 4" (1.63 m)
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Did You Know?

Personal Quote:

On second husband Bob Fosse: "Bob Fosse grew up around strip clubs. Women were his hobby. He'd even cheat on his mistress. Part of him felt guilty, another part was ecstatic. In the end, it helped lead him to an early death". See more »

Trivia:

For Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1953), Gwen coached stars Jane Russell and Marilyn Monroe in both their dance and walk -- Monroe with less sex, Russell with more. It's rumored that at one point in the film, Verdon dubs both Monroe's and Russell's swaying bottoms. See more »

Trademark:

Flaming red hair See more »

Nickname:

Gwennie See more »

Star Sign:

Capricorn

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