Charlotte Greenwood

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Charlotte Greenwood
Charlotte Greenwood 001.jpg
Frances Charlotte Greenwood

(1890-06-25)June 25, 1890
DiedDecember 28, 1977(1977-12-28) (aged 87)
OccupationActress, dancer
Years active1915–61
Spouse(s)Cyril Ring (1915–22; divorced)
Martin Broones (1924–71; his death)
Charlotte Greenwood was known for being a very limber performer.
lithograph poster for Greenwood's follow up Letty play, Linger Longer Letty, 1919.
Charlotte Greenwood in Down Argentine Way (1940)

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. In 1919 Morosco brought her back in the sequel Linger Longer 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.[1][2]


Greenwood appeared in numerous moving pictures. Her last memorable role was singing and dancing as the feisty matriarch, Aunt Eller, in the 1955 film adaptation of Rodgers and Hammerstein's Oklahoma! (1955).


Greenwood had her own radio program, The Charlotte Greenwood Show, a situation comedy. It was broadcast 1944-1946, first on ABC and later on NBC.[3] She also was in "Home in Indiana" on Lux Radio Theatre October 2, 1944.[4]


Greenwood ventured into recorded music with an album of songs from Cole Porter's musical Out of This World and another from the musical comedy Oh, by Jingo.[5]

Personal life[edit]

Greenwood first married actor Cyril Ring, brother of actress Blanche Ring, whom she divorced. Second composer Martin Broones, whom she widowed. Both unions were childless.

Greenwood died in Los Angeles, California from undisclosed causes, aged 87.

Partial filmography[edit]


  1. ^ Slide, Anthony. The Encyclopedia of Vaudeville pg 214
  2. ^ Hayter-Menzies, Grant, Charlotte Greenwood pgs 223 and 248
  3. ^ Dunning, John (1998). On the Air: The Encyclopedia of Old-Time Radio (Revised ed.). New York, NY: Oxford University Press. p. 150. ISBN 978-0-19-507678-3. Retrieved 2019-09-13.
  4. ^ "Greenwood, Charlotte". RadioGOLDINdex. Retrieved 17 April 2015.
  5. ^ 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.

External links[edit]