|Born||Frances Charlotte Greenwood
June 25, 1890
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
|Died||December 28, 1977
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
|Spouse(s)||Cyril Ring (1915–22; divorced)
Martin Broones (1924–71; his death)
Frances Charlotte Greenwood (June 25, 1890 – December 28, 1977) was an American actress and dancer. Born in Philadelphia, Greenwood started in vaudeville, and starred on Broadway, movies and radio. Standing around six feet tall, she was best known for her long legs and high kicks. She earned the unique praise of being, in her words, the "...only woman in the world who could kick a giraffe in the eye."
In 1913, Oliver Morosco cast her as Queen Ann Soforth of Oogaboo late in the run of L. Frank Baum and Louis F. Gottschalk's The Tik-Tok Man of Oz (better known in its novelization as Tik-Tok of Oz). In 1916, Morosco commissioned a successful star vehicle stage play titled So Long Letty. This role made her a star; she reprised it in the 1929 movie of the same name.
She appeared with such luminaries as Charles Ruggles, Betty Grable, Jimmy Durante, Eddie Cantor, Buster Keaton, and Carmen Miranda. Most of Greenwood's best work was done on the stage, and was lauded by such critics as James Agate, Alexander Woollcott, and Claudia Cassidy. One of her most successful roles was that of Juno in Cole Porter's Out of This World in which she introduced the Porter classic "I Sleep Easier Now". She had some discomforts with that play, as she had become a devout Christian Scientist and feared the play was too risqué. She also reportedly turned down a role as "Mother Superior" in Rodgers and Hammerstein's The Sound of Music partly because she felt she could not, in good conscience, play a nun because of her faith. One of her last movie roles was singing and dancing as the feisty matriarch, Aunt Eller, in Rodgers and Hammerstein's Oklahoma!.
Greenwood had her own program, The Charlotte Greenwood Show, a situation comedy. It was broadcast 1944-1946, first on ABC and later on NBC. She also was in "Home in Indiana" on Lux Radio Theatre October 2, 1944.
Charlotte Greenwood died in Los Angeles, California from undisclosed causes, aged 87.
She was married twice, first, to actor Cyril Ring, brother of actress Blanche Ring, and secondly to composer Martin Broones. The first union ended in divorce; the second with Broones' death. Both unions were childless.
- Jane (1915)
- Baby Mine (1928)
- So Long Letty (1929)
- Parlor, Bedroom and Bath (1931)
- Stepping Out (1931)
- The Man in Possession (1931)
- Palmy Days (1931)
- Flying High (1931)
- Cheaters at Play (1932)
- Orders Is Orders (1934)
- Star Dust (1940)
- Young People (1940)
- Down Argentine Way (1940)
- Tall, Dark and Handsome (1941)
- Moon Over Miami (1941)
- The Perfect Snob (1941)
- Springtime in the Rockies (1942)
- Dixie Dugan (1943)
- The Gang's All Here (1943)
- Up in Mabel's Room (1944)
- Home in Indiana (1944)
- Wake Up and Dream (1946)
- Driftwood (1947)
- The Great Dan Patch (1949)
- Oh, You Beautiful Doll (1949)
- Peggy (1950)
- Dangerous When Wet (1953)
- Oklahoma! (1955)
- Glory (1956)
- The Opposite Sex (1956)
- Slide, Anthony. The Encyclopedia of Vaudeville pg 214
- Hayter-Menzies, Grant, Charlotte Greenwood pgs 223 and 248
- Dunning, John. (1998). On the Air: The Encyclopedia of Old-Time Radio. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-507678-3. P. 150.
- "Greenwood, Charlotte". RadioGOLDINdex. Retrieved 17 April 2015.
- Hopper, Hedda (May 12, 1951). "Abbott Turns Producer, Then Signs Lou Costello". Chicago Daily Tribune. p. Part 1 - Page 16. Retrieved 16 April 2015.
- Hayter-Menzies, Grant. Charlotte Greenwood: The Life and Career of the Comic Star of Vaudeville, Radio and Film. McFarland & Company, Inc., Jefferson, North Carolina and London, 2007; ISBN 978-0-7864-2995-0.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Charlotte Greenwood.|
- Works by or about Charlotte Greenwood at Internet Archive
- Charlotte Greenwood at the Internet Movie Database
- Charlotte Greenwood at the Internet Broadway Database
- Charlotte Greenwood web site
- Victoria Times-Colonist, Adrian Chamberlain, May 26, 2007
- 1925 portrait of Charlotte Greenwood modeling fur and her hair coiffed taken by Benjamin Strauss and Homer Peyton
- Charlotte Greenwood at Find a Grave
- Charlotte Greenwood: Broadway Photographs(Univ. of South Carolina)